Football spoils homecoming vibe

Kansas cornerback Chris Harris throws his fist in frustration after the Jayhawks defense gives up a touchdown to Texas A&M receiver Jeff Fuller during the third quarter Saturday, Oct. 23, 2010 at Kivisto Field.

Kansas cornerback Chris Harris throws his fist in frustration after the Jayhawks defense gives up a touchdown to Texas A&M receiver Jeff Fuller during the third quarter Saturday, Oct. 23, 2010 at Kivisto Field.

October 24, 2010


Football highlights: KU vs. Texas A&M

KU lost its third straight game on Saturday against Texas A&M. The Jayhawks managed to score more than seven points for the first time in those three weeks. Enlarge video

A most pleasant evening. The smell of bratwursts riding the strong wind, crashing into the scent of fried doughnuts. Generations of pretty, smiling faces. Suds flowing. Old friends swapping old stories one more time. Nirvana in tailgate land for homecoming night.

And then the game started. I hate it when that happens.

Sure, it’s fun to visit the suites and inhale the sweets, but unless you happen to be one of the rare people who can drive by an accident without slowing down to take a long look, then it’s impossible not to gawk at what’s happening down below, on the football field.

Nothing good ever happens there anymore for the home team.

For the second week in a row, the majority of the paying customers at Memorial Stadium decided to walk out at halftime. That doesn’t happen at bad movies, so why does it at bad football games? Because you don’t always know the outcome of bad movies.

With reeling Texas A&M; in town Saturday night, for the first time in three weeks the Kansas offense reached double figures and the defense kept the opponent to less than 50 points. A case could be made that progress is being made on both sides of the ball, if, that is, the person making the case believed in moral victories out of 45-10 home losses.

The three-week tally: Baylor, Kansas State and Texas A&M; 159, Kansas 24.

OK, enough with comparing Kansas to its competition. No suspense in that. A better conversation, maybe one that could keep fans in their seats to argue the point for both halves: Which unit of the KU football team is worse, the offense or the defense?

Wait, enough with negativity. Let’s rephrase that question in a more positive way: Which unit is better?

Coming into the game, the scoring offense was ranked 112th out of 120 in the nation, the defense 99th. The defense allows 33.86 points per game, despite a stellar effort in a season-opening 6-3 loss to North Dakota State. The offense averages 16.14, despite pinning 42 points on New Mexico State.

Let’s start up front. Kansas quarterbacks have been sacked 21 times. KU’s defense has six sacks, but only one of those came from a defensive lineman. Jake Laptad earned his first Saturday. Defensive back Chris Harris leads the team with two sacks. Call the lines a tossup.

Now let’s examine turnovers, the plays that shift momentum in games. The defense has come up with four in seven games. The offense has given the ball away 13 times, not awful given the blocking inadequacies. Considering how little pressure is applied by the defensive line, it’s not too surprising the defense has come up with just four turnovers.

Give the nod to the offense at the speed positions because the KU secondary gets burned deep so often and receiver Daymond Patterson gets open fairly often, it’s just that the throws his way from Jordan Webb aren’t very accurate. Webb’s injured his shoulder, and backup Kale Pick suffered a concussion, which left third-string QB Quinn Mecham finishing the game.

Overall, with the shaky quarterback outlook and with potential impact player Toben Opurum playing on defense, the edge goes to the D by default.


JustNoticed 7 years, 7 months ago

KU should take this opportunity to get rid of football.

yellowbeakeddavid 7 years, 7 months ago

Maybe at the end of the season, God will see how much the KU Football team cares for their fellow football brethren (i.e. opposing teams), and be awarded the National Title of College Football!!!!

kujayhawk7476 7 years, 7 months ago

I'm a KU alum and have been a season ticket holder for many years. I can only imagine how low the attendance will be when the weather turns cold. This team reminds me of the worst of the Bob Valesente/Terry Allen years, unfortunately.

yankeevet 7 years, 7 months ago

During the fourth quarter there were more band members then fan members; sort of speaks for itself..............and when the game was over; several KU football players left the field with smiles on their faces; happy it was over....jayhawk feathers all over the field.......

Don Whiteley 7 years, 7 months ago

This is two years in a row, under two different coaches, that loyal Kansas fans have watched KU football disintegrate. I believe there's something deeper here than just bad coaching, but if Gill wants to keep his job, he's got to figure it out. Personally, I think we'd all rather see more helmets being slapped and more player feelings being hurt by the coach, than the brutal way in which opponents are murdering the team this year.

lionheart72661 7 years, 7 months ago

You people seem to forget how things work in the life of sports teams. Look at the Chiefs after they won the Super Bowl oh so many years ago. Under the same coach and players they crumbled. The 49ers, Cowboys, LA Lakers.....need I say more. In time KU will bounce back and so will you fair weather fans. On and off the band wagon. Support your team thru thick and thin. You're like horses with blinders. Mangino sucked his 1st year as head coach and I am sure the lynch mob was out that year too. Then he wins the Orange bowl and everyone thought he was such a great coach! Then he loses big and BOOM out he goes. Suck it up, support your team and deal with it. Or hey I have an idea. MOVE!!!

SnakeFist 7 years, 7 months ago

"Support your team thru thick and thin."

I would support effort, but I don't see any of that. The players and coaches are an embarassment to KU; if they can't respect themselves enough to make an effort (159 to 24!!!) then I don't respect them either.

pizzapete 7 years, 7 months ago

Yea, remember when KU was a football powerhouse? It doesn't seem that long ago that we won the Superdull.

yellowbeakeddavid 7 years, 7 months ago

The lynch mob was not gunning for Mangino in his first year (wasn't even a lynch mob) because the Kansas football team was on the bottom of the Big 12 looking up. We had been conditioned by Terry Allen to accept loosing. Kansas fans are upset now because they've seen what their team is capable of being (albeit a short glimpse), and can't understand how the bottom fell out so quickly. I can't blame them for being bandwagon fans, because what is there to root for when your team perennially sucks donkey schlong? We just want to have a winner out there because the football season can be so awesome when you do. We all love football as much as basketball, and we'd like to be competitive.

We're not fair weather fans, we just root for the winners at our school.

NoFitz 7 years, 7 months ago

I would support them, but the not-so-state-sponsored college atheletics have become something of an elite endeavor. A little pricy these days. Maybe they should have all their games at Arrowhead and spare the rest of us the traffic.

Tom Wilson 7 years, 7 months ago

So much for our last chance to win a game this season. Our schedule has virtually "0" opportunities to win even one more game this year. To think otherwise is to admit your emotions dominate your sense of reason.

Neomarxist123 7 years, 7 months ago

If it is 6:05 in Waco, what time is it in Lawrence? 55 to 7.

If it is 6:01 in Manhattan, what time is it in Lawrence? 59 to 7.

If it is 9:15 in College Station, what time is it in Lawrence? 45 to 10.

It is laugh or cry at this stage.

foppa 7 years, 7 months ago

The student fans at the stadium sucked last night. I was sitting at the student section and nobody was paying attention to the game. When we won against Georgia Tech the players were feeding off the energy of the fans and that helped them play better. The team should be able to play with or without fans but they don't. Fans sure aren't helping. I get that we lost terribly to K-state but if you don't care, why go to the game? why sit in the front and talk about movies? I don't get it.

Flap Doodle 7 years, 7 months ago

On Monday, KU will announce that Meow Mix is now the official breakfast food of the Jayhawks football team.

yellowbeakeddavid 7 years, 7 months ago

But, we're birds. And cats eat Meow mix, but we already played KState, and the Tigers aren't for a month. So that rules out the cat reference. I don't get it. Stop posting.

mikeisthename 7 years, 7 months ago

But the Jayhawk is a mythical bird. A mythical bird can eat anything it wants. Meow Mix fine. Ice cream fine. Bird food fine.
As far as snap_pop, not sure I get the reference.
Yellowbeak, simmer down. You are being too literal.

mikeisthename 7 years, 7 months ago

It's hard being a KU football fan after seeing the efforts of the last three weeks. I have seen worse (the Valasente/Mason era) when I went to KU. I still pulled for them through the dark times and I will in the future.
To me it seems that Jayhawk football nation wants to be back in the limelight after reaching dizzying heights three years ago. For a school with not a lot of football tradition, knowing where it's been and the desire to be back there, every movement is fragile. Every mistake magnified and every success glorified. The tradition rich schools absorb mistakes and every victory almost expected. KU nation won't be back anywhere near there unless they could take the hits and win like they are expected to.

jayhawklawrence 7 years, 7 months ago

Obviously, Mangino didn't leave enough players to make a team.

Without Todd Reesing, Mangino was a nobody.

He didn't even recognize that Todd was a special talent until he simply had to play him and then Reesing made Mangino look like the greatest coach on the planet which he wasn't.

Jim Williamson 7 years, 7 months ago

"Without Todd Reesing, Mangino was a nobody."

No more calls, please. We have a winner.

mr_right_wing 7 years, 7 months ago

Lotsa luck pushing season tickets for 2011!

Proposed slogan: "hey, it probably couldn't get worse, right?!"

Some possible marketing ideas...

Throw in free season passes to football with each season pass to basketball; ok; buy any single game ticket for basketball get all football season free!!

Buy a KU parking pass, get a season football pass for free!

Or, unlike KU women's basketball...forget tickets altogether (or parking fees) whoever comes to the game, charge.

If KU athletics still needs money though, open up a dunk tank with Coach Gill (the 'tank' has piranhas in it.)

Louis White 7 years, 7 months ago

I'mn surprised that for someone as fat as Tom Keegan, a football score would diminish the smells of bratwurst and fried donuts.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.