Kansas football off to slow recruiting start

photo by: Carter Gaskins/Special to the Journal-World

Free State junior running back Jax Dineen tries to break a few tackles against Junction City on Friday, Nov. 3, 2017, at FSHS.

Sheahon Zenger, David Beaty’s last line of defense against a 3-33 record, is gone now, so coaches using negative recruiting against Kansas have even more credibility with their lame-duck portrayals of KU’s fourth-year coach.

It’s not going to be easy for the Kansas coaching staff to line up commitments when the recruits they’re pitching, even without it being pointed out by coaches from other schools, can conclude on their own that the identity of the Kansas football coach for 2019 and beyond is a mystery.

Given that, it makes sense for Kansas coaches to zero in on recruits who have grown up in families loyal to KU, high school students who will give it all they have for mom and/or dad’s alma mater, no matter the identity of the coach. Most who fit that profile are from the state of Kansas. Mix in some of Tony Hull’s Louisiana magic and it’s possible to salvage at least the semblance of a a halfway decent recruiting class.

So far, not so good.

Predictably, things are off to a slow start on the recruiting front for the Jayhawks. Lance Legendre, a four-star, dual-threat quarterback from New Orleans, is KU’s lone commitment, which means none of the 33 recruits from Texas and three from Kansas who have committed to Big 12 schools are heading to Kansas.

Two of the state of Kansas’ top five high school recruits, per Rivals, are undecided. Both — No. 3 Jayden Russell of Aquinas and No. 5 Jax Dineen of Lawrence Free State High — list Kansas among the schools they’re considering. Top recruit, defensive end Marcus Hicks of Wichita, committed to Oklahoma. No. 2, quarterback Graham Mertz from Blue Valley North in Overland Park, is headed to Wisconsin. No. 4, quarterback Easton Dean from Altamont, committed to Iowa State.

A look at how Big 12 schools are progressing in football recruiting:

Rivals Rank/School No.commitments Geographic breakdown Kansas recruits
1 – Oklahoma 13 Texas (8), Arizona, California, D.C.
Kansas, North Carolina
DE Marcus Hicks
13 – Texas 9 Texas (5), Arizona (2), California, Georgia None
22 – TCU 11 Texas (7), Florida, Iowa, Louisiana, Ohio None
31 – Iowa State 9 Iowa (3), Missouri (2), Arizona, Kansas,
South Dakota, Texas
QB Easton Dean
34 – Baylor 7 Texas (6), Mississippi None
45 – Oklahoma State 5 Texas (3), Oklahoma (2) None
49 – West Virginia 5 Georgia, North Carolina, Ohio,
Pennsylvania, West Virginia
63 – Texas Tech 3 Texas (2), California None
73 (tie) – Kansas 1 Louisiana None
73 (tie) – Kansas State 2 Kansas, Texas DT Cooper Beebe
(Kansas City, KS)
Source: Rivals.com


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