Archive for Thursday, February 3, 2011

5 names to keep in mind for KU football recruiting class

Kansas University football coach Turner Gill is seen in a camera man’s monitor during a news conference. Gill was announcing his recruiting class of 2011 on Wednesday, Feb. 2, 2011 at Mrkonic Auditorium.

Kansas University football coach Turner Gill is seen in a camera man’s monitor during a news conference. Gill was announcing his recruiting class of 2011 on Wednesday, Feb. 2, 2011 at Mrkonic Auditorium.

February 3, 2011


— The forecast called for the temperature, without the wind-chill factor, to drop below zero during the night and I’m beginning to wonder if they have the material here to de-ice wings on airplanes. The thought occurred that just when Kansas University recruited a class of football players with Texas Tech-type speed, I might have to wait until they come here to see them play.

Locked in Lubbock, while watching college basketball on TV with country music blaring and seeing my breath inside a frosty sports bar Wednesday night, the young men at the nearby table were talking football and one of them temporarily changed the subject: “Did Tech win last night?”

“No, they got killed,” another said. “When I turned the news on and they showed the score it was something like 48-12 (41-19, probably).”

“Oh, but Kansas is really good, right?”

It’s always football season in Texas, which is one factor that makes it so difficult for schools from the North to compete against those from the South. (A bigger hurdle: Student-athletes generally prefer to stay close to home.)

A native of Forth Worth, Texas, KU coach Turner Gill shared he used the example of his own career in an attempt to overcome the geographic concerns. Going to Nebraska, he told recruits, helped him broaden his contacts and opportunities. It’s not a bad pitch, especially since he believes it.

Even for assistant coaches who evaluate grainy film and get to know the families of recruits, trying to forecast how recruits will compete against the big, fast bodies of the Big 12 presents a challenge. Still, it’s fun to try to guess at which recruits will do the most.

The five athletes among the 27 recruits who signed Wednesday that I’m most eager to watch perform:

1. Brock Berglund, QB: He plays by far the most important position on the field. Look at the difference between how Kansas played when a healthy Todd Reesing played and how it faded when a strained groin hampered him. Berglund’s size, arm strength, above-average feet and strong self-confidence make him a lock to start as a freshman.

2. Tunde Bakare, LB: Highland Community College standout with a nose for the ball that calls to mind James Holt, compensates for lack of size — 5-foot-11, 215 pounds — with exceptional speed, which KU has lacked at linebacker since Holt’s departure.

3. Bryan Peters, OL: At 6-5, 305, he already has college size and he was ranked No. 65 in the nation among offensive line prospects. That might not sound great, but considering there are five O-line positions, do the math. It equates to being ranked No. 13 at running back.

4. Darrian Miller, RB: James Sims has the ability to change directions, a la Brandon McAnderson, but he also got caught from behind. Miller is to Jake Sharp as Sims is to McAnderson. A burner, Miller, from Blue Springs, Mo., rushed for 2,226 yards and 30 touchdowns as a senior.

5. Michael Reynolds, DE: KU hasn’t had a long, wiggly, speed rusher hunting quarterbacks since Charlton Keith in 2005. Reynolds, a 6-4, 220-pound baseball standout from Wichita, might be the guy. TCU and Oklahoma State pursued him.


cato_the_elder 6 years, 11 months ago

Tom, thanks for remembering Brandon McAnderson. The KUAD owes a lot more to Brandon than it's demonstrated to date. He'd make a great ambassador for KU football and the university as a whole.

Jayhawker111 6 years, 11 months ago

There is no freshman in the country who is ready to start in the Big 12......

This Berglund kid may never hit the field.....

High school is not college....

Lets wait and see him play before you annoint him the starter....

For some reason Colorado did not want lets see if he has the ability and the attitude it takes for college ball....

Kyle Reed 6 years, 11 months ago

"There is no freshman in the country who is ready to start in the Big 12"

This may be the dumbest statement I've ever read in print.

"For some reason Colorado did not want him"

Wrong again. Colorado most certainly did want him. They however fired their coach after we whipped their a** and as a result the new coach had a new offensive plan in mind that Berglund didn't feel fit with his style of play so he decommitted. The rest is history.

colreader 6 years, 11 months ago

Akreed is right. The new CU offensive coord. is Eric Bienemy, the former Buff running back and recent Vikings RB coach. EB and new Buffs coach Jon Embree said the team will be a run-first offense. So Berglund bolted to KU, a much better fit.
CU did want him. The local news kept the defection story alive for a week. They couldn't get over could anybody leave CU for KU? There is YouTube video of Berglund but it's not crystal clear or revealing, imho. Also you can search for articles.

Tom Wilson 6 years, 11 months ago

You would think that with all the sports writing Tom Keegan does, he would at least be able to spell Lubbock, Texas correctly. Lubbock has 2 "Bs", Tom, not one. My freshman English teacher at KU probably would have flunked me on this write-up for that error, especially in a day where we have spell check!

Ian Legler 6 years, 11 months ago

Also I am pretty sure that Tom is not in charge of writing down the location of where the article was written. It is pretty clearly stated right at the beginning of the second paragraph with the correct spelling of Lubbock... All this punctuation/grammar correcting I see on this site is pretty tiresome...

John McCoy 6 years, 11 months ago

Don't forget the name Jake Love, linebacker from Tonkawa, OK. Lots of speed. Big hitter. Tough. Leader.

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