Sunday, September 2, 2007


Keegan: Reesing strikes a pose


Heisman campaigns must start somewhere. Why not right here in your hands?

The life-size posters, the wallet cards, the glossy literature : all that will arrive in voters' mailboxes later. For now, this must do.

Todd "Sparky" Reesing was that impressive Saturday evening against a bad defense in a 52-7 blowout victory against Central Michigan.

The Heisman Trophy isn't won against the Chippewas, and it's not won in Week 1, but it's a nice time to launch a campaign.

And what an opening speech Reesing gave in the first start of his college career. He threw long passes with stunning accuracy, short ones into small spots, medium ones with the right touch.

By the time Willie Pless, the greatest linebacker in the history of the Canadian Football League and KU was being honored at halftime, Reesing already had thrown for 217 yards and four touchdowns.

Pless, who called Doug Flutie the greatest quarterback he played against, also fought the too-small rap Flutie and Reesing share.

"I love this guy, man," Pless said of Reesing at halftime. "If I was a pro football team, I'd put him on my radar screen, that's for sure. Size doesn't matter to me. If a guy can play, it doesn't matter how tall, how short, how fast. This guy's a player, and not only that, he's a smart player."

KU thrashes UCM, 52-7

The star of the night was Todd Reesing in his very first start in a Kansas uniform.

So far, so brilliant.

It's early, but not too early to compare Reesing to another quarterback considered a Heisman candidate. Reesing's team is 1-0. He completed 20 of 29 for four touchdowns and 261 yards and did not turn it over. Michigan's Chad Henne is 0-1, having lost to Appalachian State. Henne completed 19 of 37 passes for 233 yards, one touchdown and one interception. Until proven otherwise, Reesing is a better Heisman candidate than Henne. It's a single-season award. Nothing that happened before 2007 counts.

Toss Reesing's name into the pool with 50 or so other college players who had great opening weeks.

Open the campaign video with Reesing's 49-yard touchdown pass to Aqib Talib. It traveled 51 yards through the air.

"I think he can throw the ball the best in the country," said Marcus Henry, who had 103 receiving yards and a touchdown. "He can put the ball on any spot he wants, as we saw when Aqib scored. He put it right on the money. I think he has a really strong arm, and he can move it anywhere he wants."

Best in the country. Interesting choice of words. Since Henry used them, why not ask him the question: Can Reesing contend for the Heisman?

"I think he can," Henry said. "I think he can. With this offense, I think he can."

Sixth-year KU coach Mark Mangino praised Reesing's poise.

"You'd think he did this for 10 years the way he approached the game, the way he warmed up on the sidelines," Mangino said. "Courage is a good thing to have. He has it. : I can't say I'm totally shocked by (his starting debut). He has this competitive spirit about him that's hard to describe. The kids feel it. The coaches feel it. He's confident. He makes people around him confident."

He made 46,815 spectators confident Saturday that this won't be another mediocre Kansas football season.


sevenyearhawk 13 years, 7 months ago

Nearly 47,000, on a holiday weekend, against a non-BCS squad?


(and while you're at it, make it look like a Beak)

Nutflush21 13 years, 7 months ago

The Heisman?!? Christ Keegan, could we be a little more realistic.

JBurtin 13 years, 7 months ago

He is just making a point that the Heisman is really just a popularity contest.

Michigan will blow out it's next few opponents and Henne will still be in contention for the award based more on the school that he goes to than the numbers he puts up.

Reesing on the other hand may very well put up better numbers than many of the candidates, yet he will be ignored due to "strength of schedule", according to the pundits. In reality, USC for instance plays some tough non-conference opponents, but are most of the schools in the Pac 10 really any better than the Big Twelve North that we play in?

I think that most of the Pac 10 teams are no better than our north opponents, and teams like Nebraska, A&M, and Oklahoma State on our schedule give us a schedule that is not far off of the "big time programs".

In the end, I could care less, the Heisman seems to be a death sentence for your career. Very few winners have gone on to pro football success.

KURUSH1530 13 years, 7 months ago

The Pac-10 is WAY more competitive than the big 12 north. Let's not take the road Keegan took and throw out ridiculous statements. I didn't see Henne on any Heisman watch list. I've only heard of three or four contenders actually. I will agree that it is a popularity contest. Any big time conference team that sweeps through there schedule will get high consideration. But your team can't lose more than 1 or 2 games. If it wasn't all popularity, Colt Brennan would have won it last year and he should get A LOT of consideration this year. Him, Booty, McFadden, Slaton, Jackson are the ones I'm looking at right now.

seattlehawk_78 13 years, 7 months ago

If Reesing gets on the Heisman watch list it will be for his junior or even more likely his senior year. There are too many players ahead of him who are not even on the list. I don't think you can come out of no where and be in contention. Kind of like the rankings, it's based on last year's performance. Seems awfully premature to even be discussing it.

rockchalkblock 13 years, 7 months ago

Ya'll forgetting Ressing put up Heisman numbers, and also a QB at Hawaii who is in the Heisman running, by the name of Colt Brennan. Plus hes just trying to get KU fans heads racing about what could be this year.

William James 13 years, 7 months ago

I like the optimism here but lets wait until we see how Reesing does against a conference opponent before we start talking about the Heisman. If we beat the Cats and Reesing has a good game, the Heisman talk could be founded.

troutsee 13 years, 7 months ago

Hey, guys, Keegen is just trying to be optimistic, something the LJW writers need a lot of practice in. Let us optimists dream, will ya. I agree, unrealistic for a sophomore at a school without a winning tradition. But, guess what? That tradition is beginning. The Jayhulks are on the rise!!!!

Kyle Crenshaw 13 years, 7 months ago

isnt this the point of editorials??? for the writer to voice their opinion and entertain the readers. i guarentee you keegan knows there is no way reesing will win the heisman. he even talked about how henne will still be higher on the watch list even though he had a horrible week (wat about mike hart? he had an awesome game and most of his yards came in the 2nd half!). but still, there is no way anyone would disagree that it would be SWEET if reesing or any ku player was in serious contention for the most prestigious individual award in sports

seattlehawk_78 13 years, 7 months ago

I don't think there are any sane Jayhawk fans entertaining the notion of winning a national title but a Heisman is not out of the realm of possibilities some time in the near future. It would be sweet indeed.

The last Jayhawk I remember receiving any Heisman mention was David Jaynes.

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