Entries from blogs tagged with “Kansas”

Baseline View: Azubuike and Jayhawks overpower Golden Grizzlies

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Injuries slow Khalil Herbert and his blockers

Kansas running back Khalil Herbert (10) charges up the field to set up a touchdown for the Jayhawks during the third quarter on Saturday, Oct. 7, 2017 at Memorial Stadium.

Kansas running back Khalil Herbert (10) charges up the field to set up a touchdown for the Jayhawks during the third quarter on Saturday, Oct. 7, 2017 at Memorial Stadium. by Nick Krug

Kansas rushed for 12 more yards in the first two games of the Big 12 schedule, vs. West Virginia and Texas Tech, than in the next six.

KU totaled just 467 rushing yards and two touchdowns, averaging 2.1 yards per carry, in games vs. Iowa State, TCU, Kansas State, Baylor, Texas and Oklahoma.

The Jayhawks (1-10, 0-8) opened Big 12 play with a 367-yard rushing game against West Virginia, Khalil Herbert leading the way with 291 yards. The next week, the Jayhawks rushed for 112 yards vs. Texas Tech.

Since that game, KU has averaged just 77.8 yards rushing per game.

What happened?

Back when Herbert had his huge day against West Virginia, he was healthy and so was the entire starting offensive line.

Herbert’s 10-carry, 65-yard effort vs. Texas Tech wrapped up a three-game stretch in which he rushed for 493 yards and four touchdowns and averaged 7.6 yards per carry.

In five games (he didn’t play against Iowa state) since, Herbert has rushed for 155 yards, a 3.1 average, and hasn’t scored a touchdown.

“Khalil’s just been kind of beat up,” KU offensive coordinator Doug Meacham said last week. “He had a couple of really good games, then he just hasn’t been the same physically. He’s had shoulder. He’s had hamstring. He’s had stuff.”

The same is true of Herbert's blockers.

KU hasn’t had its starting offensive line in tact since the Texas Tech game. That’s the last time that, from left to right, Hakeem Adeniji, Andru Tovi, Mesa Ribordy, Chris Hughes and Zach Hannon, formed the starting lineup.

Ribordy missed the Iowa State and TCU games. Hannon didn't play vs. Kansas State and Baylor. Chris Hughes was sidelined for much of the Texas game and all of the Oklahoma mismatch, replaced by Larry Hughes. Similarly, Tovi missed part of the Texas game and didn’t play at all vs. Oklahoma.

Adeniji is the only first-string offensive lineman who has not missed a game because of injury.

How much is Herbert’s performance dictated by the performance of the offensive line?

“That has a lot to do with it,” Meacham said. “And then in that West Virginia game we did some things a little different than we had shown and that kind of hurt them.”

Kansas has a good back in Herbert when he’s healthy and running behind a healthy line, so if those two factors twin up far more often in 2018, he could have a big junior season.

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Bill Self on guard for bad habits growing in blowouts

Kansas head coach Bill Self chews into his players during a timeout in the first half, Tuesday, Nov. 7, 2017 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Kansas head coach Bill Self chews into his players during a timeout in the first half, Tuesday, Nov. 7, 2017 at Allen Fieldhouse. by Nick Krug

It takes a lot to please 15th-year Kansas basketball coach Bill Self, but even he sounded impressed at the ease with which the Jayhawks handled Texas Southern, 114-71, Tuesday night in Allen Fieldhouse.

“They’ve got four legitimate guys, 1, 3, 4 and 5, those guys can all play,” Self said of the Tigers. “We just played so efficiently offensively. They had a chance to beat Ohio State. They had Syracuse down int he second half. They had Washington State down 23 in the second half. Really, Gonzaga’s the only one that’s handled them with ease, so certainly I was pleased with the outcome. I thought we played pretty well.”

Even so, Self remains on constant guard against bad habits developing in games against less talented teams than Kansas will face in the Big 12.

“I think our defensive rebounding’s a bad habit," Self said. "We haven’t rebounded very well in my opinion since the first half of Kentucky, (in) which we were great, but second half we didn’t rebound defensively and certainly we didn’t against South Dakota State like we should have and didn’t (vs. Texas Southern).”

He also pointed to defensive flaws.

"I think bad habits would be big guys going for blocked shots on guards outside their area," Self said. "Then all you have to do is throw the ball at the rim and catch it and dunk it. It’s not that complicated. We want people to do that to us. That’s something that Dok (Udoka Azubuike) and Mitch (Lightfoot) have to get better at. I also think that we play to the score too much defensively. I don’t think there was the same energy level midway through the second half as there was to start the game in most cases. Competition hopefully will keep that from happening as much.”

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KU Sports Extra: 3-Pointers For Everybody

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Lagerald Vick on his growing confidence, blowout of TSU

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Bill Self discusses KU’s 3-point shooting, Azubuike’s technical, pregame phone call

After KU's 114-71 win over Texas Southern on Tuesday, coach Bill Self was asked about a variety of topics in the postgame press conference.

One thing that came up was KU's record 3-point day. The Jayhawks hit 12 3s in the first half and 19 on the night, both of which were school records.

"I couldn't be happier," Self joked of the history. "I think we should celebrate for a week."

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Svi Mykhailiuk talks about record-setting night, Udoka Azubuike’s dunk

Moments after Kansas' 114-71 win over Texas Southern, senior guard Svi Mykhailiuk spoke to the media about the record-setting performance.

Mykhailiuk hit five 3-pointers in the win, helping the Jayhawks reach their final total of 19. That mark broke the school's 3-point record for a game, while the 12 3s they hit in the first half was also a school record.

"We did not miss a lot," Mykhailiuk said. "It's just great to make history."

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Baseline View: Kansas lights up Texas Southern with 19 three-pointers

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David Beaty discusses change in tone, discipline to players after OU game

After a toned-down reaction on Saturday, David Beaty opened his press conference by calling the handshake snub by the KU captains unacceptable.

Beaty announced the captains from the last game would be stepping down, noting they’d be replaced by the seniors for the final game of the season against Oklahoma State.

“We’re going to make mistakes from time to time, but our guys, they want to represent that bird on their chest with ultimate integrity,” Beaty said. "And they understand that and we’re going to demand that from them."

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KU football captains discuss handshake snub, discipline, fallout from Saturday

After snubbing Baker Mayfield of a handshake before Saturday’s 41-3 loss to Oklahoma, the KU football captains met with the media on Tuesday to address the incident and reaction.

The captains were stripped of their captaincy for the final game of the season against Oklahoma State. That role will instead be held by the seniors.

“Kind of an impulse decision,” said Daniel Wise. “That’s not who we are, really.”

“We weren’t thinking, at all,” added Jeremiah Booker, who stood next to Wise during the pregame festivities, but wasn’t noticed because he was in a hoodie.

Joe Dineen, the only captain to speak after the game, said he wasn’t frustrated by being the face of the incident. He said he took full responsibility for his actions and echoed the words of his coach earlier in the day.

“It was dumb,” said Dineen. "Obviously looking back it was a horrible idea."

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Nutty opinions abound that Kansas football job does not attract quality applicants

Charlie Weis, 55, waves to media members at the Lawrence Airport on Thursday night around 8:30 p.m. after arriving in town with Kansas athletic director Sheahon Zenger, at right. Weis has agreed to become the 37th head football coach in KU history.

Charlie Weis, 55, waves to media members at the Lawrence Airport on Thursday night around 8:30 p.m. after arriving in town with Kansas athletic director Sheahon Zenger, at right. Weis has agreed to become the 37th head football coach in KU history. by Mike Yoder

Far too often, athletic directors seeking head football coaches put “hot name” on the list of qualifications.

They do so because they place winning the press conference above building a winning football program on their list of priorities.

So if the hot name of the moment is the coordinator from a national powerhouse program, they like that. If Art Briles before his fall from grace happens to be the coach drawing the most praise at the moment and he used to be a high school football coach in Texas, then having high school football coach in Texas on your resume heats up your name.

Typically, “hot name” takes precedence over the three-word combination that should trump all else: good football coach.

Every time I write about good football coaches who wanted the Kansas job when the last three vacancies surfaced, I remember another, or someone reminds me of another.

Consider the blind resume of, we’ll call him John Doe before revealing his name later in the blog.

In his first assignment as a head coach, at the FCS level, his team’s went 4-7, 5-6, 11-1, 11-2. He stayed for one year at his next job, an FBS school, and then earned a promotion to an SEC program.

Coach Doe inherited an SEC program that made it to two bowl games in the previous eight seasons. He took that same school to bowl games in each of his first six seasons. His team played in three New Years’ Day bowls in a five-year period.

He coached two different schools to victories over LSU in Baton Rouge, once when LSU was ranked No. 1, the next time when the Tigers were No. 8. He moved to another SEC program, had two good seasons, two bad ones and was fired.

Houston Nutt, who played quarterback for Lou Holtz at Arkansas and was head coach for Murray State, Boise State, Arkansas and Ole Miss, wanted the Kansas job when it went to Charlie Weis and again when it went to David Beaty.

He’s working as a broadcaster now and turned 60 last month and last coached in 2011.

Nutt most recently made national news when he gained a settlement in his favor in court. He wasn’t suing Ole Miss for money. He was suing for an apology to restore his good reputation. Nutt alleged a smear campaign designed to pin the Rebels’ NCAA violations on him instead of successor Hugh Freeze.

Nutt won, receiving the following apology last month: “Certain statements made by university employees in January, 2016, appear to have contributed to misleading reports about Coach Nutt. To the extent any such statements harmed Coach Nutt’s reputation, the university apologizes, as this was not the intent.”

Good football coach.

Why do I continue to write about coaches who wanted the KU job in the past? Because I don’t believe the contention of many that the Kansas job is not an appealing one. Don’t buy that for a second. It's a very difficult one, but many good football coaches, Nutt included, would embrace the challenge.

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Oklahoma coach Lincoln Riley won’t start Baker Mayfield vs. West Virginia

The sixth-grade Hurricanes and Cougars shake hands before the coin toss. The Hurricanes got the ball first Oct. 9 at Youth Sports Inc.

The sixth-grade Hurricanes and Cougars shake hands before the coin toss. The Hurricanes got the ball first Oct. 9 at Youth Sports Inc. by natalie-flanzer

Baker Mayfield will not start and for a game not serve as team captain in Oklahoma’s regular-season finale vs. West Virginia on Saturday, Sooners coach Lincoln Riley announced at his Monday press conference.

The punishment stems from him twice grabbing his crotch and sending F-bombs across the field at the Kansas sideline.

Kyler Murray, who in a 41-3 victory over Kansas averaged 11 yards on three rushes and completed 3 of 5 passes for 55 yards, will start in place of Mayfield.

“This program has very high standards and when they’re met, there are going to be consequences,” Riley said.

When talking about the qualities he finds special in Mayfield and how proud he is to coach him, Riley grew teary-eyed and needed to take a 30-second break from talking to compose himself.

Kansas coach David Beaty holds his weekly presser on Tuesdays. It will be interesting to see how he answers questions about whether his three captains will be disciplined in any way for not shaking Mayfield’s extended right hand during the pre-game coin toss.

Beaty did not appear overly concerned about the snub after the game, but during Monday’s Big 12 conference call the third-year coach (3-32 overall, 1-31 vs FBS schools) apologized on behalf of his team and shared that he believes Dorance Armstrong, Joe Dineen and Daniel Wise “care deeply” about representing KU and the football program in a “classy” manner and that they’re “great men” who made a mistake.

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Numbers say Kansas weakest of 65 power-five football schools

Several Baylor players celebrate over Kansas quarterback Carter Stanley (9) after sacking him during the fourth quarter on Saturday, Sept. 4, 2017 at Memorial Stadium.

Several Baylor players celebrate over Kansas quarterback Carter Stanley (9) after sacking him during the fourth quarter on Saturday, Sept. 4, 2017 at Memorial Stadium. by Nick Krug

Now that Kansas routinely is referred to as the worst of the 65 power-five football conference schools (a designation that includes independent Notre Dame), it's time to see if the numbers support the label.

It boiled down to a two-school race with Kansas edging Oregon State, thanks to the Beavers having strong back-to-back weeks in the first two games under interim coach Cory Hall, who lost 36-33 to Colorado in his first game and 15-14 to Stanford in his second. Hall took over after one of the more stunning moves by a coach in recent memory. Gary Andersen quit with a 1-5 record and in doing so walked away from a guaranteed $12.6 million.

After checking the margin between points scored and points allowed for the 65 schools, I ranked the 10 worst in that category and also tracked how many times each school has been on the wrong end of a blowout, which we'll call any loss by 38 or more points.

Illinois checks in at No. 3 and Baylor, which defeated Kansas 38-9 two weeks ago in Lawrence, is No. 4.

Just those four schools had negative margins of more than 100 points. A look at the 10 worst programs, ranked in order of margin between points scored and allowed, with conference record breaking ties:

School
Rec/Conf PF PA Margin Blowouts
(38+L's)
Coach (Record)
1 - Kansas
(1-10, 0-8)
207 463 -256
4
David Beaty (3-32)
2 - Oregon State
(1-10, 0-8)
238 447 -209 0 Cory Hall (0-5) interim
3 - Illinois
(2-9, 0-8)
178 336 -158 1 Lovie Smith (5-18)
4 - Baylor
(1-10, 1-7)
270 386 -116 1
Matt Rhule (1-10)
5 - Vanderbilt
(4-7, 0-7)
253 352 -99 1 Derek Mason (17-31)
6 - Tennessee
(4-7, 0-7)
214 307 -93
2 Brady Hoke (0-1) interim
7 - Maryland
(4-7, 2-5)
286
379
-93
1
D.J. Durkin (10-14)
8 - Rutgers
(4-7, 3-5)
209 300 -91 2 Chris Ash (6-17)
9 - Arkansas
(4-7, 1-6)
300 386 -86 0 Bret Bielema (29-33)
10 - Nebraska
(4-7, 3-5)
295 381 -86 1 Mike Riley (19-18)
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KU Sports Extra: KU Sports Extra: Breaking down handshakes, chippy play and KU’s 41-3 loss

KUsports.com's Benton Smith and Tom Keegan discuss the handshake snub during the coin toss and post-game reactions from both teams.

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David Beaty talks about pregame antics, chippiness between KU and OU

The KU football team didn’t need to wait for kickoff for the fireworks to start.

As the captains stood at midfield, Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield extended his arm for a handshake. No KU players stepped forward, prompting the quarterback to clap a few times before heading back to the sideline.

Speaking after the game, KU coach David Beaty provided some clarity on the moment.

“I’m proud of our guys for getting to a point (where) we’re not going to take it any more,” Beaty said. "I’ve got to do a better job as their coach, maybe teaching them how to manage that a little bit better.”

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Hasan Defense, Joe Dineen talk about late hit on Baker Mayfield, handshake snub

KU linebacker Joe Dineen became a bit of a social media star on Saturday after snubbing Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield of a handshake before the game

Dineen clarified the gesture afterward, while Hasan Defense spoke about one play of his own, a late hit on Mayfield that drew a 15-yard penalty.

"It was just a bad mistake by me,” Defense said. “It won’t happen again."

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Oklahoma’s Lincoln Riley, Baker Mayfield discuss handshake snub and Mayfield’s gestures

Oklahoma coach Lincoln Riley and quarterback Baker Mayfield talk about Kansas players not giving Mayfield a handshake during the coin toss, how the game turned chippy and Mayfield's obscene gestures toward the KU sideline after a touchdown.

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KU Sports Extra: Walking on past the Jackrabbits

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Svi Mykhailiuk talks about career day, history made by Bill Self

After scoring 27 points against South Dakota State on Friday, Svi Mykhailiuk met with the media to discuss his performance, as well as a piece of history made by his coach.

With the win, Bill Self moved into second-place on the KU all-time wins list. Mykhailiuk called the chance to play for Self "once in a lifetime."

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Clay Young says he’s always prepared to play after practicing against KU’s bigs

After playing a career-high 18 minutes in Kansas' 98-64 win over South Dakota State, senior forward Clay Young talked about his unexpected minutes, practicing on the scout team and trending on Twitter.

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