Jayhawks’ beat down of Boston College a real attention grabber

photo by: Chris Evans

(Boston, MA, 09/13/19) Kansas Jayhawks fullback Hudson Hall (49) celebrates after scoring a touchdown against the Boston College Eagles during the first half of an NCAA football game at Boston College in Boston, Mass., on Friday, September 13, 2019.

OK, Kansas Jayhawks. You have our attention.

Now what?

For the first time in who knows how long — years if you’re going by the calendar, 1,000 lifetimes if you’re measuring in heartache — the Kansas football team stepped onto the field and thoroughly dominated an opponent to the tune of Friday night’s where-did-THAT-come from 48-24 road win at Boston College.

When is 2-1 a better record than 2-0? When the 2 comes in convincing fashion just six days after the 1 that nearly sent everybody running for the exits.

Maybe it’s appropriate that this is the first year of the no re-entry, beer sales experiment at David Booth Kansas Memorial Stadium. Maybe this will be the year that Kansas fans won’t care where the exits are.

Maybe.

That word is important right about now because, through three games of the Les Miles era, we’re not quite sure what to make of this KU football team.

We know they’re imperfect. Miles likes to use that word himself.

We know that they’re tough. You don’t respond to a brutal home loss to Coastal Carolina one week with a stellar effort like Friday night without being tough as hell.

And we know that, against all odds, they’re coming home, with an extra day of rest and preparation, for a chance to move to 3-1 with a home game next Saturday against West Virginia.

If there’s a disappointing part about Friday’s wild win back east it’s what it wasn’t. Had Kansas taken care of business against Coastal Carolina in Week 2, the win over BC would’ve made the Jayhawks 3-0. Heads really would’ve been spinning then.

Then again, had they taken care of business against Coastal Carolina, they may not have had the drive of disappointment, embarrassment and anger to carry them to Friday’s victory.

Imperfect.

But alive. And interesting. At least for now.

Big 12 play promises to bring new challenges, tougher opponents and even less room for mistakes and miscues. The Jayhawks know that. Miles certainly knows that. And things are only going to get harder from here.

So let’s hold off on the bowl talk and win predictions for a little while longer. After all, things have not changed enough yet for anyone to know for sure that more days like Friday are ahead for this football team.

It’s possible, of course. However improbable that may be. And the kind of confidence a team can take from handing out a beat down like the one the Jayhawks delivered on Friday can be significant. In many ways, it felt significant while the Jayhawks were running all over the Eagles, like a turning point of sorts or, at the very least, a game and date you might want to circle to come back to if things really do finally turn.

There is, of course, a long way still to go before any real declarations about a turnaround can be made. Years, perhaps. After all, if a team can flip the switch and transform so dramatically in a positive direction like KU did from Coastal Carolina to Boston College, can’t it bounce the other way just as easily?

Time will tell on that. And while we wait for the verdict, Miles and company will continue to work to do the one thing that hasn’t been done in a decade around here: find a way to sustain success.

Friday night provided a glimpse of what’s possible. The question now is: When will we see it again?

If the answer is next Saturday against West Virginia, people may really start to believe things are happening.

Points. Pride. Fight. These were all things the KU football fan base needed to see from their team on Friday night, and KU delivered with its strongest sign of real progress in who knows how long.

The Jayhawks have our attention again. How long can they keep it?

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