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Sunday, October 28, 2007

Jayhawks shut down Aggies, move to 8-0

Kansas receiver Dezmon Briscoe stetches for extra yardage after a reception against Texas A&M during the second half Saturday, Oct. 27, 2007 at Kyle Field in College Station, Texas.

Kansas receiver Dezmon Briscoe stetches for extra yardage after a reception against Texas A&M during the second half Saturday, Oct. 27, 2007 at Kyle Field in College Station, Texas.

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2007 KU-Texas A&M Football

Podcast episode

Spodcasters

Chewing up the turf

Ryan Greene, Ryan Wood and Tom Keegan discuss how KU was able to get the best of Texas A&M; the old-fashioned way - both stopping the run and moving the ball on the ground themselves.

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— It was a fight to the finish in a stadium that resembles a skyscraper of intimidation. But Kansas University's football team, at long last, was able to kick Texas A&M; off the ride.

And what a ride it's becoming.

Kansas knocked out Texas A&M; in its own ring, 19-11, on Saturday, hushing a mostly hostile crowd of 85,341 fans at Kyle Field. With the victory, the 12th-ranked Jayhawks improved to 8-0 and continued to excel in waters nobody thought they could even swim in.

"It seems like this is God's team," defensive tackle James McClinton said.

The spiritual McClinton spearheaded a defensive performance that knocked the Aggies into a world of uneasiness. Texas A&M; (6-3 overall, 3-2 Big 12 Conference) brought its heralded running attack into Saturday's showdown, but was humbled when it gained only 74 yards on 27 carries.

The bread and butter was toast.

"We knew we had to play the run well, and we did," KU coach Mark Mangino said. "We felt like in order for them to beat us, they had to throw the ball. That's not their comfort zone."

The Aggies did score late points thanks to their passing game. But by that point, Kansas was leading in the fourth quarter and only needed to deny a collapse to stay undefeated.

That's now two road victories in two weeks, with a national-television audience tuning in to both.

"We're just showing that we're hard workers," said linebacker James Holt, who had a team-high 10 tackles. "We're mentally strong, and we're ready to get down and play."

It's the first 8-0 start for KU since 1909, and the unbeaten run has turned questions of KU's legitimacy into questions about whether KU can sneak into the national-championship discussion.

Considering the losses that have plagued college football's top teams this season, the fact the Jayhawks are 8-0 overall, 4-0 in Big 12 Conference play and 3-0 on the road speaks volumes about just how clutch this group is.

Saturday's game was won with another second-half elevation for Kansas, after the game was a scoreless knot after one half.

Though KU missed two field-goal opportunities before halftime, Kansas still seemed sure of its chances as the final 30 minutes of football got going.

"We felt like our offense was moving the ball really well. We needed to just punch it in," KU coach Mark Mangino said. "Our defense was playing extremely well. We felt like it was a matter of time."

Kansas ended up getting two Scott Webb field goals and two rushing touchdowns from Brandon McAnderson, who had a sensational night with 183 yards on 21 carries. McAnderson's second score, with 11:29 left, put the Jayhawks up 19-0.

From there, it got somewhat interesting. Texas A&M; booted a field goal with 7:20 to play and scored its lone touchdown with 2:06 left on a nifty catch by Roger Holland. An onside kick was unsuccessful, but Texas A&M; got the ball back with 52 seconds left and 80 yards to travel.

The Aggies, down eight, actually had two Hail Mary shots at the end zone in the final 15 seconds. But a pass breakup on the first one and a hurry by Joe Mortensen on the second sealed another Kansas victory.

"We gotta make a couple of more plays at the end," cornerback Aqib Talib said, "so it won't even be that close."

At a road game with an environment as loud as a jet, that's really a case of nitpicking. The fact is, Kansas remains unbeaten as college football powers all around are licking the wounds of defeat on a weekly basis.

The Jayhawks play two of their next three at home, starting Saturday with a showdown against struggling Nebraska.

It seems, perhaps improbably, that the victories are turning businesslike for a program that hasn't started this strong in 98 years.

Kansas jogged of the field Saturday happy, but lacking the overwhelming elation that followed victories at Kansas State and Colorado earlier this month.

Even at 8-0, the Jayhawks are finding themselves even hungrier.

"We're just going to keep on going, keep on fighting every game," quarterback Todd Reesing said, "and hopefully things keep on working out for us."

Go figure

74

Rushing yards by Texas A&M; against Kansas

260.1

Rushing yards by A&M; coming in (the best average in the Big 12)

8.7

Yards per carry for KU's Brandon McAnderson (for 183 total)

3.4

Yards per carry for massive A&M; back Jorvorskie Lane (for 18 total)

1-13

Sacks-yards by Kansas University's defense

4-21

Sacks-yards by Texas A&M;'s defense

4-7

Red-zone scores-chances for KU

1-2

Red-zone scores-chances for A&M;

Comments

Bryan Summers 13 years, 4 months ago

I agree Actorman... but still...Go Jayhawks!!!

actorman 13 years, 4 months ago

"It seems like this is God's team."

Makes sense to me. I've always worshiped the almighty Jayhawk.

The only thing I couldn't understand was why KU felt the need to go to a prevent defense. Why wouldn't you stick with what was working so incredibly well? We could have had a shutout. But I guess I'm just being greedy.

Nutflush21 13 years, 4 months ago

Obviously, another great win for the Jayhawks. However, what concerns me is the amount of points we are leaving on the field. Getting into the red-zone twice in the first half and getting 0 points as well as Fine dropping the long 3rd down completion (also in the 1st) is just not going to cut it against Mizzou, OU and whoever we play in our bowl games. Solid teams will bury us if we continue to do so.

Having said that, it feels damn good to be 8-0 :)

JBurtin 13 years, 4 months ago

The announcer didn't know what the hell he was talking about. A prevent defense doesn't bring any pressure, we were still bringing blitzes.

We just gave them the underneath stuff in the middle of the field to make them run clock. They just did a good job of executing when the going got tough. That's exactly what they are known for and why they are tough to beat, especially at home.

They also got luckier than crap with that first touchdown pass. I don't know how we could have defended that any better, the ball just happened to get knocked into his hands.

Further, the stuff that was working all game long was running a run defense to blow up the option. Obviously you aren't going to stay in that when A&M starts needing to pass the ball. There is no question we would have to change strategies, it's just a matter of what strategy we would like to take. Since our defensive line was bringing great pressure all game long, it makes sense that we wouldn't need to bring more than about one blitzer at a time, and over-load the field with d-backs. We almost got an interception a couple of times in those last few minutes, it just didn't work out that way this time.

Larry Smith 13 years, 4 months ago

Great win Jayhawks! A tough hard fought game, and a gutty performance. It's great to be 8-0!

The one thing I didn't understand was, why didn't we run the ball more in the red zone? The two tds we scored, were pounding it in, smash mouth football. In the first quarter, we had 1st and goal from the 7. three passes in a row and a blocked field goal. 2nd quarter 1st and goal from the 10. 1 run, 1 incomplete, a sack and a missed fg. 3rd quarter, 1st and 10 at the 13. 1 run, a penalty, 2 incompletes and a missed fg.

I know this is nitpicking, but I really wanted to blow them out. And the way the line was playing, I think we could have beat them into submission on national television.

Oh well. its still great to be 8-0 and heading for a Big 12 title.

1977kufan 13 years, 4 months ago

JBurtin assessments are exactly correct. A prevent defense allows the opponent to run their plays to the middle of the field and not permit the touchdown strike or to throw short passes to the sideline. THAT WAS THE DEFENSE THAT WE WHERE IN AT CRUNCH TIME!!! How do you spell Texas A&M and touchdown pass in the same word? LUCKY! How do you characterize the Texas A&M running game? League-leading until they meet a super outstanding defensive unit -- then you can hand them chairs, because this is how far and fast they will be moving. TREMEMDOUS GAME FROM THE COACHING STAFF, THE D AND THE O. AGAIN, THE TREMENDOUS LINE PLAY ON BOTH SIDES OF THE JAYHAWK'S FOOTBALL TEAM IS NOTHING SHORT OF AWESOME. JAYHAWK FOOTBALL, LOVE IT,WATCH IT. SEE EVERYONE AT THE STADIUM NEXT SATURDAY!!!

justanotherfan 13 years, 4 months ago

I have to echo a lot of the above sentiments.

First, great win for this year's team and the program in general. That's one more step to respectability. This team does what it needs to do every Saturday, which is more than can be said for (insert typical national powerhouse here).

Second, we left a ton of points on the field yesterday. By my count, we left no fewer than 9, possibly as much as 21. This game easily could have been over midway through the third quarter. We are letting people hang around, which is the way that USC got beat by Stanford, Michigan got beat by App State, Florida got beat by Auburn, OU got beat by Colorado, etc. All of those games were won in the final minute (3 of them on the last play) after the underdog hung around for so long that they convinced themselves that they not only could win the game, but that they should win the game. We can't have that next weekend against Nebraska (like Texas almost did yesterday) or the following two weeks against inferior opponents Iowa State and Oklahoma State. We need to finish teams off when the game is close.

Still, 8-0 feels good. Real good.

ku98 13 years, 4 months ago

Take that, Lee Corso! Once again, he dissed the Jayhawks by predicting that, out of the last few remaining unbeaten teams, we would be the one to lose. Herbstreit told him "well, you said that last week and they won at CU", and Corso said something like "well, if I keep saying it, I am going to be right at some point"... Well, not this week, you old fart!

Jonathan Allison 13 years, 4 months ago

KU 19-11 over Texas A&M in College Station Colorado 31-26 over Texas Tech in Lubbock K-State 51-13 over Baylor and Nebraska 25-28 loss to Texas in Austin

Come on Huskers, you let the whole division down.

bmcmich1 13 years, 4 months ago

First of all, let's take a moment to reflect on what we are witnessing:

1) FIRST WIN EVER AT KYLE FIELD. I'll repeat: FIRST WIN EVER AT KYLE FIELD. EVER.

2) 8-0 for the first time since 1909, and a pretty darn favorable schedule until Nov. 24

3) A year in college football where the usual suspects such as USC and Florida are already out of the National Title hunt and WE ARE IN IT.

4) Brent Musberger, College Football's favorite nerd, uttering the words "rock chalk jayhawk" followed by praise of our FOOTBALL TEAM during a national broadcast of Ohio St. - Penn St. (some may not agree, but I thought that was pretty damn cool)

Wow. Folks, sit back and reflect. Everyone posting on this message board ( and even Bill Mayer ) wasn't alive the last time 'Hawk Football was 8-0. We are all witnessing something SPECIAL.

I don't even really want to give Lee Corso the time of day, but he's such an idiot that I want him to KEEP PICKING AGAINST US!! As long as Lee Corso thinks we'll lose, I'm comfortable because that means we'll probably win!!

This is almost surreal. Someone's gonna have to pinch me. I sat through Bob Valesente and Terry Allen, so it's almost like I don't believe that the 'Hawks are 8-0. I am beyond happy or ecstatic; I can't even find a word to describe how I feel right now. Let's keep enjoying the ride, ROCK CHALK JAYHAWK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

sevenyearhawk 13 years, 4 months ago

We've won in Manhattan, we've won in Boulder ... and now a win in College Station!

This experience was just incredible!

The Aggies are a very hospitable and gracious group of fans!

fabio, Jimmy_Dean and I are just about to hit the road for the return trip ...

We'll be talking to you later this week!!!

Beak 'em!

Kevin Long 13 years, 4 months ago

That was not a prevent defense at all. All KU did was drop the safties back about 20 yards, everone else was up on them.

Screw Lee Corso, Herbstreit makes him look like an idiot every week.

I know we should have scored more in the red zone, but on the road you do what ever it takes.

I love every minute of this! 8-0

Mangino_Maniac 13 years, 4 months ago

8-0!!! I'm loving every minute of this too... RCJH!!!

Christian Hinton 13 years, 4 months ago

This is the article that validates the morning-after victory hangover.

"We're 8-0! We beat A&M at home!"

Teapot9 13 years, 4 months ago

I love the fact that the Jayhawk and the team aren't displayed prominently on ESPN.com or any of the other major sports sites (BESIDES KUSports.com). I hope the Hawks get NO national love for the rest of the season. Keep them under the radar. Vegas has to be scratching it's head when KU might be a double digit favorite over Nebraska.

Greg Woolen 13 years, 4 months ago

I was at the game last night and I have to say that it was great watching fans start pouring out of Kyle Field when we went up 19-0. The Jayhawks played great in a very loud stadium. I have to admit that I never expected our team to be sending fans home early in this sport, but it was great.

Michael Auchard 13 years, 4 months ago

Was it just me or were they calling B-Mac "Brian" McAnderson a few times last night?

Robert Brock 13 years, 4 months ago

I went to the game at Kyle Field. The Aggie fans that I talked to before the game were friendly and absolutely certain that the Ags would "BTHO" the Jayhawks on the ground. Their fans were sick - and the stadium unusually quiet - when it became obvious that KU wasn't going to allow that to happen. I'm pleased.

Brock

tdub 13 years, 4 months ago

The best hit of them all: Kendrick Harper on that poor receiver! As seen on the intro to Sportscenter!

RckChalkJeff 13 years, 4 months ago

Why not have every KU fan wear red? Then we would neutralize the Nebraska morons.....wouldn't even be able to tell where they were...

Go Hawks!

Brian Skelly 13 years, 4 months ago

I agree with bcmich1. Soak this in folks. Enjoy the ride.

If we lose a game this year, its going to be because some team really "beats" us. I just dont think we are going to beat ourselves.

How rare is that? Lets face it... since Mangino has been here, he's started to recruit decent players. We'd always shoot ourselves in the foot though. Even that 4-7 season a few ago, we could have easily won a few more games and been bowl eligible.

This team just doesnt seem phased by anything. Both Mangino and Reesing seem to embody that to the hilt.

Enjoy it folks. Soak it in. Lets see if we cant end up playing on New Years Day.

actorman 13 years, 4 months ago

Okay, I will take my mea culpa with a smile on my face. Shows how much of an expert I am (and the announcers are) that I thought it was a prevent defense.

I still feel like we let up a little when we had the big lead, but the main thing is that KU is 8-0. It really is unfathomable, and as soon as one game ends I can't stand having to wait a week to see another one. It's going to be great to look forward to a stomping of the (former) Evil Empire. I hope I'm not taking it for granted, and I CERTAINLY hope the players and coaches aren't thinking as much about the OSU game as I am.

Go 'Hawks! Keep the magic going!

Larry Smith 13 years, 4 months ago

8th in both polls. Just can't seem to get into that top 5(yet!).

rtjayhawk 13 years, 4 months ago

Great game played by our team. What a great team we have this year!

100 13 years, 4 months ago

It's great to see the KU players, fans and coaches still very hungry. We have a whole lot to prove this year. Let's pack the stadium next Saturday -- louder than ever! Nebraska is a very good team -- we have to prepare hard all week and respect them! Rock Chalk Jayhawk!

OklahomaJayhawk5 13 years, 4 months ago

Did anyone notice how terrible Bob Davie was last night? He went into a minute long story about an Aggie player was selfish and said he didnt care because he was going to the league after they LOST to Nebraska. They didnt lose to Nebraska you idiot, get your facts straight! I muted the TV in the 3rd quarter and turned on the computer and listened to a real announcer... Bob Davis!

Jonathan Allison 13 years, 4 months ago

somebody's gona have to lose for us to keep moving up in the polls. It's pretty ridiculous that the computer polls rank us higher than the human polls. Obviously the human polls are penalizing us for both strength of schedule and name of program, but we're in the home stretch now and if things keep going the way they are giong we will get the opportunity to play three straight top 10 teams to end the season. Then we'll see if we still get penalized for being the Kansas Jayhawks and not the OU Sooners, OSU Buckeyes, Florida Gators, Michigan Wolverines, USC Trojans, Texas Longhorns, etc.

Jim Pendleton 13 years, 4 months ago

Another unbelievable road win!! Shouldn't have been as close at the end, but the defense definitely closed the door again, just like in Manhattan & Boulder. I do agree that we need to do a better job of finishing offensive series. When we are running it down their throats late in games, don't pass the ball, make them stop you and have to use their t/o's. Had we done that a couple times, converteda kick or two, they would have been out of time outs, we would have been up at least two scores, and they may not even have seen the field for that last drive.

Let's keep it going against the Huskers, and by the way fans, if you haven't done so already - DO NOT SELL YOUR TICKETS TO HUSKER FANS THIS WEEK!!

sayers48 13 years, 4 months ago

Anyone know when the tickets for the MU game will be mailed?

seattlehawk_78 13 years, 4 months ago

I find Corso's mentality unbelievable. How does one not respect an 8 0 record? And this coming from a former coach.

Here's something about Lee that is also a bit amazing. In ten years at Indiana he compiled a record of 41-68-2 and one of his current business ventures is motivational speaking. He commands a $10,000 to $20,000 fee. I don't know who would pay that kind of money but if I could find those people I'd like to talk to them because I have a bridge I'd like to sell them.

troutsee 13 years, 4 months ago

KU will beat the Huskers by 3 touchdowns. We need to run up the score on these guys. Take no prisoners. Give them a dose of their own medicine.

kujayhawk 13 years, 4 months ago

Let's enjoy being the hunter. Who cares what the so called "experts" think of us.

Kevin Long 13 years, 4 months ago

I agree troutsee. We lost to them bad for over 30 years, lets let them know how it feels!

Dale Koch 13 years, 4 months ago

Hey Nutflush21, KU leads the Nation in red zone scoring at 91%. I know we missed a couple of chances the other night but that was the only game we have done so. I agree, Fine has dropped several passes this year and needs to be holding on to them better. Go Hawks!!!! Pound the Corn Cobs.

CaramelMacchMan 13 years, 4 months ago

I wish we had the HILL. It would have been half way filled as well...haha

Michael Leiker 13 years, 4 months ago

I already know of about 10 friends who will be sitting on the hill saturday. Should have 65k there I would think.

droberts1116 13 years, 4 months ago

Everyone, if you are going to the Nebraska game on Saturday and know other people who are, remember to WEAR BLUE!!! Leave your red KU stuff at home this week!

Displayhawk 13 years, 4 months ago

I agree with droberts1116, everybody wear KU Blue, ......not the mineshaft blue, and not that pansy north carolina blue, .......but that great KU BLUE! KU Blue rules on Saturday!

Dr_Hawkenstein 13 years, 4 months ago

Why are we going for 2pt conversions when we are ahead by 19 points? Nothing good can come of this, especially because we usually don't get it. If we kick the extra point and go up by 20, TA&M still must score three TDs to win. When we miss the 2pt conversion and are only up 19, TA&M only needs two TDs (two 2pt conversions) and a field goal to tie. NEVER, NEVER, NEVER go for the 2pt conversion when you are ahead by more than one TD and there is more than 5 minutes to go in the game. Mangino is tempting the football gods and sooner or later it will catch up to him.

GO HAWKS! Beat the Huskers!

shelleysue 13 years, 4 months ago

I agreed with the 2 pt conversion attempt under that circumstance. One point does nothing for you because 3 touchdowns and PATs would win the game for A&M. We were no worse off with 19 points, but making the 2 pt would mean A&M will only get a tie. Very doubtful that they would get 2 TDs, both with 2 pt conversions.

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