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Les Miles new head man at KU….Jayhawks still a bottom bird feeder…..

(First of ten Big Twelve football previews for 2019)

 

 

Kansas Jayhawks

 

 

 

Head Coach:  Les Miles  142-55 (18 years)  

 

Last year’s record: 3-9; 2-7 conference

 

Kansas broke through in 2019 with three victories, including a conference win (TCU at home), to highlight the final season of the David Beaty years.  With the hiring of former Oklahoma State and LSU head coach Les Miles, expectations in Lawrence might be higher ever since the Mark Mangino years a decade past.   The Jayhawks have a hired the 65 year old Miles, a reputable coach who has won a National title (LSU) to lead the lowly team of the conference.  The issue is not that Kansas will or will not be well coached under Miles and his staff, but if the work and effort will translate into wins, not only  this year but in the future.   I can see an improvement in the program if not in the win column for 2019.  Kansas has a long way to go but with better facilities promised, that will bring in better players.  Miles can recruit  some players that might not have thought about KU as of his name and past accomplishments.  Kansas fans might have hope, but what is new?  

 

 

 

Offense:  JC Transfer Thomas MacVittie (Mesa) has all the abilities of a fine pro-style quarterback that should give KU a boost to go along with Pooka Williams, the conference’s best young back.  Williams will serve a one game suspension (domestic incident).  The sophomore that averaged over 150 all-purpose yards in 2019 will have to do it on his own as the Jayhawks will have one of the worst offensive lines not only in the Big Twelve but in a Power Five league.  The pass protection for long yardage situations will again be a bug-a-boo for KU.  Look for Takulvie Williams to be the best receiver with the unproved group of pass catchers.  Kansas under Miles will be conservative on offense.  A horrendously bad o-Line will be the culprit of many three-and-outs.  Look for KU to go into the halftime break already a beaten team.  Grade D

 

 

Kansas running back Pooka Williams Jr. jumps over a teammate to gain more yards. Photo by: Mike Gunnoe

 

 

Defense:  An experienced secondary will not save this group from getting ass-kicked on any given Saturdays.  The defensive line and backers are mediocre at best.   A second best (nationally) turnover-margin will not be repeated and the Jayhawks will not be better on this side of the ball in 2019.   Give Miles a few years and the KU defense will improve exponentially.  Grade D

 

A contingent of Kansas football defensive players — from left, Elmore Hempstead Jr., Elijah Jones, Najee Stevens-McKenzie, Ricky Thomas, Mike Lee and Julian Chandler — pose on the sideline as the Jayhawks wrap up a road win at Central Michigan. Photo: kusports.com

 

 

Special Teams:  The Jayhawks will get plenty of punt practice and kickoff returns. They should be ok if Pooka is in the mix to return for them.  Otherwise, KU is like many teams.  Let us see what happens game to game and if anyone shines in any aspect of the kicking game.  Grade:  C

 

 

 

 

Game outlook:

 

Games KU could win:  Indiana State (H); Coastal Carolina (H); West Virginia (H); Kansas State (H)

 

Games KU should not win:  Boston College (A); TCU (A); Oklahoma (A); Texas (A); Texas Tech (H); Oklahoma State (A); Iowa State (A); Baylor (A)

 

 

Final Big Twelve Prediction:  3-9 and 1-8 in conference play-Last in the league

 

 

The future look of KU’s Memorial Stadium below:  

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About Fred Pahlke

Fred Pahlke, an Oklahoma native has viewed over 10,000 sporting events in his 65 years. A season ticket holder of the Oklahoma City Thunder, former season tickect holder for the Oklahoma Sooners, Oklahoma City University Chiefs/Stars, he is an expert in both professional and college basketball and football. A high school athlete at Classen High School in basketball and tennis, he played amateur tennis after high school in the Missouri Valley Tennis Association. A graduate of Oklahoma City University, he taught in the public schools for 6 years before becoming a building administrator in the Oklahoma City Public Schools for 31 years, 28 as the Principal of various schools in the district. He has guided various high school and college athletes in his time as an educator and coach. Fredsportsextra has recorded 101, 410 article views in its first ten months, from August 2015 through May 2016.

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