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Saturday, November 26, 2011

Keegan

KU’s next move must be bold one

Kansas head coach Turner Gill leaves the field after KU's loss to Missouri in the Border War on Saturday, Nov. 26, 2011 at Arrowhead Stadium.

Kansas head coach Turner Gill leaves the field after KU's loss to Missouri in the Border War on Saturday, Nov. 26, 2011 at Arrowhead Stadium.

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Press Conferences & Post-Game Interviews

KU coach Turner Gill

Kansas coach Turner Gill talks to reporters following the Jayhawks' 24-10 loss to Missouri on Nov. 26, 2011.

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KU coach Turner Gill press conference

KU coach Turner Gill talks to reporters following the Jayhawks' 24-10 loss to Missouri on Nov. 26, 2011.

— Two years ago, after Mark Mangino had just coached his final game for Kansas University with a loss to Missouri and a seven-game losing streak, he spoke into a microphone on the table in front of him. His last words after eight years on the job: “I will tell you that I may be one of the more pleasant people to deal with in college football. Trust me.”

Turner Gill sat in the same seat Saturday in Arrowhead Stadium after his team battled the same opponent and extended its losing streak to nine games. His final words, like his two-year reign, weren’t as interesting as Mangino’s.

“I think we can be competitive next year,” Gill said after Saturday’s fall-from-ahead 24-10 loss to Missouri. “I think we have some players in here. We’ve got to put together good things and continue to recruit, and we’ll be ready to roll next year.”

Surely, he had to know that it’s over, but what’s he supposed to say? “It’s not my problem anymore. I’m out of here, and within 90 days I’ll be $6 million richer.” No way he would even think that, much less say it. Gill will learn officially, possibly as soon as Sunday, that he’s not coming back. And it won’t be the end of the world for him.

It cost Kansas $3 million to buy out Mangino, and Gill has $6 million coming to him. Those figures don’t include the assistant coaches’ guarantees. The temptation is to stand atop the mountain and scream, “This must stop. Settle on a coach, and leave it at that.”

Ideally, of course, the next coach will not do anything to inspire anyone to make an issue of his treatment of the players, will win and won’t want to coach anywhere but in Lawrence. Ideally.

Now let’s talk reality. This can’t be a defensive hire, a safe hire. This situation calls for an aggressive, bold if necessary, move, one that awakens a fan base lulled into apathy. After two years of going 1-16 in Big 12 play, getting blown out by the upper-division schools, leading at halftime only to get owned in the second half against some others, this won’t be an easy fix.

Mike Leach has multiple lawsuits in play, including one against Texas Tech, a Big 12 member and his former employer. He’s also suing ESPN, which some believe is the reason Maryland didn’t hire him. Maryland’s failure or unwillingness to work through those issues doesn’t have to apply to Kansas. Clearly, Leach has an uncanny knack for identifying quarterback prospects and developing them. He’s a proven winner. His name alone would energize ticket sales.

Even so, if things can’t be worked out with Leach, Kansas athletic director Sheahon Zenger can’t cave to the pressure of having to name a big name and shouldn’t necessarily restrict himself to someone with experience as a head coach. Mark Stoops, the youngest of four brothers from Youngstown, Ohio, is Florida State’s defensive coordinator. No. 1 LSU and No. 2 Alabama are the only BCS schools with defenses that have given up fewer points per game than Florida State’s 15.2. Stoops didn’t make the transition from coordinator to boss at Arizona, you say? Bob Stoops did, I say. Each brother deserves to be judged individually.

Either hire gives Kansas a better football coach than it had the past two seasons.

Comments

justinryman 2 years, 4 months ago

Bold? No!

Bold is for short term headlines. Sure it will get you on Sportscenter for a night or two, but will it breed success on the field or just the papers?

Good? Yes!

Kansas needs to make a good hire. Sure it may not bring the overnight headlines on Sportscenter right away, but it will bring the headlines for the long term when you are winning long term and not just the flavor of the month.

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BPSkelly 2 years, 4 months ago

I dont understand those whom think firing Gill is difficult. He's gift wrapped this firing for the administration. He managed to smash through the bottom and keep going. KU's obscenely modest expectations (im being polite -- KU folks dont care about football -- unless we're the worst team amongst the BCS schools... which we are) werent even remotely approached. Which would seem like a damn near impossibility. Yet, give credit to Gill... he's done it.

I dont think we're going to get anyone of significance. I cant see why any coach of significance would want the job (other than money of course). I dont agree with Mellinger's take about the quality of this job. I'd love to see a name coach on their second (or third) go around -- I would have loved a shot at Rich Rod -- I just dont think we're going to see it. Some up and coming assistant or coordinator with Midwest ties quite frankly strikes me as the best shot we have and someone.

We'll see what happens. But people need to get real. There's nothing tough about firing Gill at all. Forget the $$$ issues. I have it on 3rd, 2nd, and 1st hand authority that the movement to raise money for the buyout has been going on in earnest since September. Regardless of the cost, its a sunk cost. Cut the check and move on.

Id agree that finding the replacement could be tough. Because lets face it... what happens with this next hire essentially will define Zengers tenure here. And likely limit it if he screws it up. Firing Gill will be the easiest decision he ever makes here though.

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142466 2 years, 4 months ago

KU's all time FB record has been gradually drifting downwards toward the .500 mark. Until Gill's tenure, during which we changed into a precipitous declining mode. Thanks to Gill the .500 mark is now in sight. That "coveted .500 mark" as KC Royals early years' broadcaster Buddy Blatner was fond of saying. Whenever people here in California attempt to disparage KU football I've always retorted, "KU's all-time FB record is above .500, and the Jayhawks are long-time members of the FB strong Big 6-7-8-12 Conference." Might not be able to use that rejoinder much longer.

In just two years Gill did more to contribute to that slide than most all his predecessors did in much longer tenures. The Huskers could not have given KU a greater departing insult than to have sent Huckster Gill our way.

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Randy Bombardier 2 years, 4 months ago

I think Gill and Co. should get at least one more year. But I doubt that is going to happen. I am done preaching. That being said, I like the idea of Cromwell as he was the BMOC during his KU years. I also like Houston Nutt or even Mike Leach. I like the Coach at NIU. I say give it to the one who is not afraid to go on a year to year contract. Period. If our young AD wants to gamble with a young, up and comer, this is the way. It would be a no-lose situation for him. I would rather pay more for year to year than to have to have a buyout. If the new coach is really confident of himself he would take that offer. That being said, Leach would never take it. Cromwell might, but I believe only an unknown would take such a deal.

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kureignman 2 years, 4 months ago

I think it's a waste if we just fire Gill with a $6 mil going away gift. Can't he work in some other capacity at the University? If he's not willing to do that then maybe he'd be willing to buy out his contract at a lower price.

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142466 2 years, 4 months ago

I floated Cromwell a while back on one of these blogs. I didn't know what he is doing now. Thanks for the update. I was unaware that he had did any college coaching. Does anybody know the reason why he went to TexA&M, what years he was there, why he departed, and whether his 2 years at A&M were considered successful?

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FreddyinLA 2 years, 4 months ago

Nolan Cromwell Kansas High School Athlete of the Decade Big 8 Offensive Player of the Year at QB NFL All-Decade Team as a DB Played in 1 Super Bowl, coached in 3. Special Teams coach in NFL for Super Bowl winning Packers. Offensive Coordinator at A&M for 2 years.

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Gary McCullough 2 years, 4 months ago

If KU gets on this coaching merry-go-round the program goes into the trash, again. The program's brief success under Mangino was an opportunity to move to the next level. What was his favorite thing to say after a game? "Keep sawing wood." But now the fans want the program to return to looking for a quick fix instead of patiently building and enduring less than satisfying seasons. This is the hallmark of a basketball school where a few highly regarded players can turn a program around in a few seasons (e.g., Kentucky's reliance on one-and-done players.)

The problem, my fellow alumni, is not in our coaches, but in ourselves.

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Kevin Randell 2 years, 4 months ago

I think the majority of us would be in agreement that IF Coach Gill would have made a marginal degree of improvement then I can see giving this guy another year. But "facts" only support that this program is going in the wrong direction. You can only bail water out of a sinking ship so long before it goes under. Look, I like the guy and truly had hoped he could have turn it around, but this game of college football is all about winning and 5-19 shortens a coaches career. But whether he is let go tomorrow or next year he will be a millionaire and I truly wish him the best.

Now as far as all the negativity I have read about how KU sucks and our history of losing, etc all I have to say is would you all please pack your bags and move to the SEC with Mizzou and A&M. I don't give a crap about our history and where we came from. All I care about is where we go from here. We need to rally around our University and give whatever support we can and send a clear message that we want KU to have a winning program. Even if we go 0-12 next year, I will still buy my season tickets, I will make my 3.5 hour drive, and enjoy what I feel in my heart is the greatest sport there is...football.

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BarkingHawk 2 years, 4 months ago

The only way this can be about race is if our Chancellor would make it about race by requiring retention of a coach with the same profile as Turner Gill who is not black. The one good thing about hiring Turner Gill is that it showed we would not allow race to be a factor in not hiring. Neither should it be a factor in firing. When it is not - both ways - we will know we have overcome the racial component and come a long way in doing so.

Any firing, a well-earned one, should be based on the merits. And anyone who has spent their hard cash on this program the last two years - and sat out in the wind, the damp and the cold of Arrowhead yesterday - knows exactly what I'm talking about.

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pcutjayhawk 2 years, 4 months ago

Can't hurt to ask Mason. What about Tommy Bowden? Or Skip Holtz? I agree we need someone with a little more fire in the belly. I was against the Mangino fire. Personally, some of the players gave up on him. Remember CU's old coach, "It's division one football!" Time to find a fighter, whether it's a no name or a proven name, we need a change.

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BillSelf4Prez 2 years, 4 months ago

Next year we need to start Mathews at QB or some good recruit. Webb is not going to get us W's. He is awful and we will be doomed the next two years with him. With Mathews he can run, looks like he can find running lanes, and looks like he can throw better than Webb. Every time Mathews was in the game yesterday a got 5-10 yards and then we would bring Webb back in and he would killl the drive and lose yards. Next year i wouldn't mind seeing Mathews in there and us run an offense like Georgia Tech or Navy. I mean the guy can run, finds holes, and we have 4 above average running backs. I think it would be a pretty good fit but that is just my opinion.

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justinryman 2 years, 4 months ago

Leach is NOT the answer. Ron Zook just got fired from Illinois, not the answer.

Look there has to be a coach that is a good person, and a great coach that will take this KU job. Phillip Fulmer has been out of coaching a few years,, you just never know.

But it doesn't have to be a big name head coach that has been there and done that. There are a few assistants listed above that would be nice to have in the KU colors. What about NFL assistants or Coordinators???

I jsut do't want to have Mike Leach on our sidelines. His frivolous lawsuits his antics and his behavior are not what KU is about.

Then again what do I know? Just like all the other KU fans its guess and see, guess and see.

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hihawk 2 years, 4 months ago

I have been saying the same thing about Snyder compared to gill. Both coaches has players left over from a previous coach and look how they compare now. This copout that gill doesn't have his players, but, there has to be improvement with what you have, and KU hasn't seen anything that shows improvement here. Bill Snyder-- National Coach Of The Year, again, again, again, and again.

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Jack Wilson 2 years, 4 months ago

Bold move. Read Mellinger's column in the KC Star. Mike Leach.

And I will be surprised if BGL permits Zenger to can Gill after two seasons. Common discussions are that 2 years is not enough to give a coach to develop a program.

It can go unspoken, or avoided, or ignored. But the racial element is clearly there ... will BGL permit the firing of a black man whom she so clearly advocated hiring? More precisely, will she permit it after just two seasons?

Year after year we hear about blacks not getting enough chances, and the constant whining and complaining about that garbage. So it will be at least interesting to see. I doubt if the racial side of this will be overcome to permit the firing.

The fact is, as JayDocMD said right above, "Gill has lost the support of the vast majority of fans and boosters." This football program is a joke with Gill at the helm. As Mellinger said in his column, pretty much everyone that is around college football sees what Snyder is doing right now at K-State with roughly the same talent.

A master in Manhattan; a laughing stock in Lawrence.

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Robert Brown 2 years, 4 months ago

If Gill stays this will be reasons we will hear: 1) 2 years isn't enough time to determine if he can build a competitive program. 2) This year's roster was the youngest in a Big 12. 3) This year's team played one of the toughest schedules in the nation. 4) DC leaving before season for medical reasons created problems with the defense, but saw some improvement toward the end of the year (MU, Baylor, Iowa State).

Firing Gill is easy. Finding a replacement is hard. There are alot people in crimson colored glasses that think this is great job. There will be alot of other jobs where the school:

1) Only gave the previous football coach 2 years before firing him 2) Are in stable conferences 3) Has a better recruiting base (I can't think of a BCS school with a worse recruiting base than KU's- small state, better in-state rival, etc.

I'm not thrilled with the direction of the program, but I am concerned that whoever replaces Gill will not be any better which will further set back the program.

Those of you who say that hiring one of the Muppets would be better than Gill don't know what you are talking about. I have followed KU football since the late 60s and I can't say any coach has ever achieved sustained success. The closest were Mangino and Mason. I don't know if that speaks to how badly we hire of how difficult the job is:

  • Pepper Rodgers moved to UCLA and was probably considered a good coach -Fambrough never left KU -Whatever happened to Bud Moore (who was coach while I was in school) -Gottfried left for Pitt, but became more successful in the broadcast booth -Valesente- what happened to him- he is compared to Gill -Mason- was decent at Minnesota -Allen is back in the MVC, not all that successful
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JayDocMD 2 years, 4 months ago

Gill has lost the support of the vast majority of fans and boosters. Even looking through the rosiest of rose-tinted glasses, there is no indication that this ship is going anywhere but down. I used to think only a change in coordinator(s) was a possibility, but now I see that's the equivalent of rearranging a sinking ship's deck chairs.

I liked the Gill hire and was willing to give him 3-4 years to implement his plan. However, another year of these weekly humiliations would effect the schools reputation, relationship with fans/boosters and ultimately KU's bottom line by so much more than the ~6 million owed to Gill. The buyout will be big and certainly a hard pill to swallow, but big picture: KU simply cannot afford another season like this one.

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bville_hawk 2 years, 4 months ago

How about Frank Solich? I never see his name mentioned when head coaching positions open up.

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Maracas 2 years, 4 months ago

Why is Gill not fired yet? Zenger has had plenty of time to evaluate him. Should take all of 30 minutes or less.

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Remember_Osceola 2 years, 4 months ago

Keep Gill so I can enjoy you losers languishing at the bottom of the BigTX even longer! Maybe you'd pick up a few wins in the MVC!

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patkindle 2 years, 4 months ago

turner gill would be stupider than i think if he turns down the 6 mill. hardly anyone is that stupid except the ones that suggest it bow out gracefully , what a crock

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kubballgal 2 years, 4 months ago

If Turner Gill takes the 6 million he has no integrity at all. He will be fired because he is a BAD COACH. He should bow out gracefully and leave the money for the next coaches hire.

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mutt627 2 years, 4 months ago

After all the scandals at Ohio State, Jim Tressel will have a hard time finding another BCS school taking a chance on him immediately. He will need to restore his name someplace and has said that he wants to coach now. Kansas is the perfect place for him. He brings a business mentality to the program and has won a national title everywhere he has been (Youngstown State and Ohio State).

Some people say that we can't afford to fire Gill. That is non-sense as we can't afford to keep him. The lost revenue of ticket sales, merchandise and bowl games easily makes it worth it to fire Turner Gill. Coaches don't get paid $2 mil a year because they are coach, they get paid $2 mil a year because they bring in more than $2 mil in revenue for the program. Jim Tressel would bring KU Football a ton of money and that can't be ignored.

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rockchalkjjjhawk 2 years, 4 months ago

I find it sort of pathetic that in this day and age no one has to own up to anything. Just pass the buck and move on. It seems to me that if Lew was the one who made the bad hire, he should have been on the hook for a percentage of any buyout. As it is, Lew left with a pile of cash given to him basically from the pockets of a bunch of hard working alumni/businessmen/businesswomen all the while not having any consequence in his departure when he knowingly hired a suspect coach who had had an average track record at best. As it is, it isn't someone like Lew who now has to once again dig deep in his own pockets to help out the university. Instead it's the donors who were already ponying up and will now have to do so even more because of their love for KU. And the money for Gill's buyout, if it occurs, will also go to the entities (lawyers, etc) who set up such a high-rate-of-return deal. It's to their advantage now for Gill to be fired. The payout-to-investment ratio vs time is what the keen eyes will be on. Besides, it's not out of their pockets that the money has to come from.

What I've always found interesting to watch are the leeches who have come in from out of the area who didn't pay a dime to the university either through tuition, fees, dues, funds but who are successful in wringing what ever they can out of the system not because of the success of some over-the-top talent they have but instead because of the success of KU. One could go down the line: From directors all the way down to book authors, etc. Tom Brokaw's reports not that long ago on "the fleecing of America" could easily have been renamed "the fleecing of universities".

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kchuskerfan 2 years, 4 months ago

Gill can certainly be held to recruiting, and coach selection. Play calling also drove me nuts, but that's Chuck Long deciding personnel groups and several plays actually had holes blocked but they are just too slow and indecisive to hit the holes created. That's youth. The blocking schemes being coached are pretty good it appears. Also, they are thin at most positions so depth is a problem, why they wear down. I think the first half of games is more telling and with some time and depth, they can take that to the 2nd half too. I even saw the ole option into the short side for 5 yards... LOL. Have to ask Iowaboy to defend Chuck Long and I sincerely hope they can successfully recruit some defensive talent. But most know, people start by focus on the Offensive side because offense puts butts in the seats first.

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squawkhawk 2 years, 4 months ago

Yesterday should have been a blow out like most other games this year. MU tried giving the game away. Franklin threw 3 picks that were awful throws and should not have been thrown. MU acted like they didn't even want to be there in the first half. That changed in the second half though when MU decided to show up. Even with 3 turnovers KU could only muster field goal on offense. KU was lucky MU only played half a game.

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patkindle 2 years, 4 months ago

I figure zengler has two options,

Wait until after church today to fire gill. Or let gill work off another 2 mill, And keep him for a year to see what happens

As far as the next mu/ku game, it wont be important Until ku decides they need a million bucks To feed the kitty

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kchuskerfan 2 years, 4 months ago

Few teams have 70% freshman and sophomores. his best returning rb was converted to LB. A qb was made a wr. If you look closely you'd probably see duct tape on the uniforms as KU tried to put it's best talent on the field, which wasn't as much as others. Still, they made young mistakes. Yesterday was not bad coaching that had the qb have a tipped ball or the punter muffing a snap. But honestly, Pinkel's been there several years. He's got his program in place. didn't people expect MU to win? I'll stop making excuses for Gill. I'd feel the same about any coach actually. 2 years>? only one full recruiting year, and he had great success getting guys off a 3-8 season. Go back and look at what he signed last year. Better than anything Mangino had. Shoot, wasn't this supposed to be the massive talent year that was gleaned from the Orange Bowl season? That some want to bring Mangino back is pretty funny, actually. Can we just bring Reising back? That's really what most of you are really saying and miss. Gill did fail to get a QB. Still has. I really wasn't expecting much out of this year. Surprised to see that so many of you did. I do agree that coaches can step in and win quickly. If they step into certain programs like Auburn, Oklahoma, USC. But look around.. Tennessee, Florida, UCLA, AZ all more attractive than KU for a football coach and they have similar issues. In fact, look hard at Tenn as they have been through 2 coaches as KU is about to be. Even their name and legacy can't recruit a name coach. Bill Self? C'mon. He was a final four coach with Illinois when we offered him. It's not even close to the same. And KU is a destination Basketball Job. You cannot compare KU basketball and it's prominant place in it's sport, vs KU football and it's place. Exactly to the point of the expectations being a bit too high.

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Jayhawk1958 2 years, 4 months ago

Why blast Keegan? The writing has been on the wall for how long now? He was hired and paid to write editorials and not report news.

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lawrencekansassucks 2 years, 4 months ago

Not looking great for basketball season either! Hahaha KU is going down the toilet

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kchuskerfan 2 years, 4 months ago

Just curious Iowaboy. Was Chizik a failure at Iowa St and only learn to coach by going to Auburn? He was viewed as making good progress at Iowa St. After how many years there? 2? ummmm. no. And at Auburn, the cupboard was hardly bare and he had a much bigger budget to buy players, or players dad's that shopped them around. Ironic as Gill was a finalist for that job, too. I do not think Chizik is more or less coach than Gill. Gill was offered the Offensive coordinator job for OU when Stoops got there, Btw. Insiders do not feel he's a bad coach. One other point, I'll use the Washington Redskins to make the point. They had Scottenheimer as a coach. Smashmouth, run the ball guy. They fired him, got Steve Spurrier to replace him. Spurrier threw it all over the place. Took two years to get the line, rb's and decent wr's in and then after yr 3 they fired him. Replaced him with?? Joe Gibbs. took three years to go back to getting the guys to again focus on running the ball. A decade of bad. At KU, you had Mangino with Todd Reising throwing all over. Gill prefers to run it, needed to get different type of talent in here vs what little was here. Takes a few years for freshman 3 and 4 star O-line guys to bulk up and get experience. Not a lot of dominant freshman off lineman. And now you hope to go to Leach? Bet he gets more than 2 years, but he will need it and probably get beat badly for a while. Or where you getting Leach for his defensive focus on things? As to the Nebraska thing. Wish we'd of hired Gill or kept Pellini when we could have vs chasing the name, Callahan nearly destroyed us and did long lasting harm. We may never again be what we were. I can be fans of both. And KU wishes they had Nebraska's issues. But chasing off Solich and Pellini because they weren't TOM and unreasonable expectations is where it started.

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Ashwin Rao 2 years, 4 months ago

What I expected from Zenger after the mid-season comment by him: 1) Develop a good understanding of what the stakeholders (fans, donors, staff, students etc (Did I mention KUSports staff?)) of his program expect… no, not an outcome (“Fire Gil”), but the “real” need (e.g. better communication from the program, current expectations about competition within the conference (no, not win it all, but be competitive, show some spark, show some improvement) etc) 2) Evaluate current situation… a. Contract with Gill & his asst. b. Available coaching options (new HCs (both folks looking for jobs, or those that can be lured away from a job), upgrading of Asst, etc) c. Available funding options to align with the best coaching option 3) Work with the coach(s) to come up with a better, more measurable contract. a. Granted, Gill will be a fool to walk away from this cool deal, but can we not restructure it to make it less cool now and cooler (much cooler) at the end once progress is shown? Gill would love to be given a chance to prove himself, and we will be taking a smaller risk. b. Look at alternatives if the (a) does not materialize. 4) Keep the stakeholders updated on progress… but at this point in time you don’t want to alienate them in the process… He needs to get the stakeholders to buy into what he is doing so there is less of this negativity in the process. I believe the time is NOW to start with (4) as it has not been done before.

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DallasJayhawk1 2 years, 4 months ago

What about bringing back Glen Mason ? When I was at KU he started to put KU on the football map and was a good coach.

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kureignman 2 years, 4 months ago

I said this yesterday, but I find it incredibly sad that we are so desperate for a coach that we actually want Leach. He is flat out a nutjob!

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Ralster Jayhawk 2 years, 4 months ago

It might be a two-edged sword to bring up Bill Self's hire, but I feel it was no way the stretch it was to hire Gill. He proved himself at Tulsa (Elite8, 30win squad with no McDAA's), then went to Illinois where he recruited better guys, who ultimately played Roy's UNC for the Natl Championship in a UNC-ref'd game. Bruce Weber has not matched up in the 8yrs he has had, has he? I played basketball with an Illini alum a couple of mos ago--the illini still are upset with ku for stealing Self. We did not pay Self 'big money' when he was hired. He was paid elite $$$ once he gave us the big result Roy couldnt. Granted there were uneasy grumblings about Bucknell+Bradley, but you could see the talented guys we had even when we lost in Maui and to UCLA in '07. It was clear what he was building. And we rarely ever saw or see a coaching bad-play-call game-after-game-after-game. That is not what good/great coaches do. Why cant Gill/Long stop doing that?


Here's the other 2 edged sword: it seems to me Mangino was ax'ed over small potatoes. So, with hindsight, was Reesing's senior year team's final lackluster games enough reason to fire Mangino? I never heard any "player abuse" stories that I felt warranted a firing over it. Football is not for the weak. If some "soft" players couldnt handle getting a finger in their chest (whatever linebacker that was...), and the KUAD took the side of the "softies", then we ended up with a "soft" coach, and a "soft" team--didnt we?

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blackhawkjayhawk 2 years, 4 months ago

As many of us have told our kids, the right choice isn't always the popular choice. Big names mean nothing. Hiring the right guy for the KU job is paramount. Gary Pinkel was not a big name, neither was Bill Snyder, neither was Roy Williams and neither were many other successful coaches. We need someone who is hungry, experienced and competent. Flash is just that...flash. We need substance.

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namder 2 years, 4 months ago

If you were watching a "well coached team" then you were certainly not watching our crimson and blue. I beleive in separation of church and state. That dialogue has no place here, this is football not Sunday school.

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Jack Hoover 2 years, 4 months ago

It does NOT take two years to build a program. Gene Chizik failed at ISU and won a National championship the very next year at Auburn. That mindset is pure BS. A coach can make a difference the very 1st year....... See ISU. PLUS, we are paying our coach 800,000 less than your guy. You could of hired Gill for much less as he was only making 400,000. Lew stuck it in your gullet its as simple as that. This is gonna be a tough road for you hiring a new Coach. You are 6,000,000 upside down minimal and where is the money coming from to get a guy like Leach? You have a real mess brothers. Get out the pail and start mopping.

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lawrencekansassucks 2 years, 4 months ago

I don't know what all of y'all Jayhawk fans want. I know Gill sucks but who would be able to turn that program around? Its all about recruiting which is near impossible to do in Lawrence, KS. Nobody wants to play in that freezing cold weather y'all have there. They try to recruit out of Texas but you get the left overs after UT, A&M, Tech, TCU, OU, OK St, Baylor, UofH, SMU and in any other D1 school here in Texas. That makes it tough to compete. Those kids don't want to move from the big city of Dallas or Houston to live in Lawrence, KS. They would rather go to Waco than Lawrence just because they can be closer to their families and friends. Sorry, KU is in a terrible location for football.

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jmsuther 2 years, 4 months ago

Anyone who thinks Gill should stay either doesn't watch the games or doesn't care about the outcomes. I don't understand why we aren't pushing for jim levitt he is the best coach for us to get out there

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kchuskerfan 2 years, 4 months ago

Wow. And I used to think KU people were only insane in basketball season. KU is not even close to a "destination job". You get a Stoops in here and he'll be gone at the first sign of success. Gill got in here late, recruited O-Line when he knew cupboard was bare. Tough sell post Mangino mess, but he got some. Then redshirt and take lumps. The next year he gets a full recruiting season, builds relationships, gets some good talent. Several 3 stars. REDSHIRTS them and plays this year. Then the Big 12 is a conference/isn't a conference BS plus rumor of Gill's firing has all but killed this years recruiting and somehow it's Gills fault that a team comprised 70% freshman and sophomores can't keep up yet? He probably thought he was building a program. Had no idea that KU people and sportswriters had an agenda for Mike Leach or so little foresight. You may as well fire him now. Without a committment, he can't get recruits. Good luck getting a coach or players in this environment when you've run two good coaches in a row out of here for non football reasons. 2 years? NO ONE could've done better in 2 years. Even with losing the def coordinator, the Colorado kid at qb having to leave? One thing is certain, KU fans are a consideration for a potential candidate coming here and the lack of reasonable expectation will be an issue. I watched a well coached team with marginal and thin talent that looked young and undersized. It wasn't going to stay that way. Pinkel, Snyder, Mangino, Gundy, Pellini. Give them only two years and where were they? Heck, that list would be huge. No one only gets 2. KU fans need to wake up. You've never won anything. Never won the big XII North even. You stole an orange bowl due to the acts of the same AD you apparently now villify? Even the proudest moment in the last 50 years of your program isn't much to be proud of. Its too bad we have a Christian man of ethics and morals that takes away the cell phones and stresses academics and being a man of responsibility that doesn't embarrass that team or school. You're right, Keegan. He's clearly gotta go now. Two more years and we may have never been able to get rid of him.

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Ralster Jayhawk 2 years, 4 months ago

Agree that next coach needs to be a "name" coach who arrives with (proven!!!) track record in recruiting+winning success. The total azz-backwards logic by Perkins in paying an unproven guy (Gill) $2mil/yr has backfired on us all. So if we alumni are really ready to come up with $6mil to show Mr.Gill the door, then stand by the lesson of actually paying someone top dollar who has the respected credentials to deserve it! Recruiting, recruiting, recruiting. Wasnt it like hearing a sideways-slam when the TV announcers said the KU team started of with "fire&emotion and are playing 'above' their talent level...". We know we dont have the depth, and we keep seeing bonehead coaching decisions/play-calling...

My problem with a non-name, small school ftball coach is the recruiting side of things. Doeren at SIU. Well, remember whatever coach comes here will face the Big12 football powerhouses, not whatever they faced in their lesser league. This is partly what swallowed up Gill. Get a proven, name coach who more impact recruits might want to play for--hire the right guy, and that brings some degree of instant credibility. Lew maybe paid Gill 'serious money' to show KU was serious-->but out of respect for that investment, we need results. So we need to send the msg again that we are a BCS school who is serious enough about 'ftball credibility' to make the coaching change & go after a respected coach. Just my rant...

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question4u 2 years, 4 months ago

It will be interesting to see who might want to take the risk at KU. Pressure to make significant improvement in two years is one thing, but the possibility of another round of conference realignments that leaves KU in the Mountain West is another. Only a short time ago that was a real possibility. Maybe enough money can make any head coaching job attractive, but how many big-name coaches would jump at the chance to come to KU? Even up-and-coming assistant coaches may think long and hard about making that career move. Leach might be desperate enough to take the job, but will a school that fired Mangino want to look hypocritical by hiring another coach with the same kind of baggage?

Maybe KU will pull off a miracle hire, but it seems more likely that another Turner Gill is in the works – just one with greater promise for a winning record. Both KU and anyone who is hired as head coach will have to take a risk.

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bville_hawk 2 years, 4 months ago

The football coach Zenger hired at SIU in 2008(?) has had reasonable success...

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namder 2 years, 4 months ago

I get so tired of reading some of these starving journalists posts criticizing Keegan. The Jayhawk nation does extend outside Lawrence. Anyone that doesn't realize that sticking with Gill means empty stands and apathy next year has their head in the sand. I think it will be a tough hire but we must move on. The means to do so has been secured and the unwillingness to fire Gill will only alienate the deep pockets from which the funds were secured. It's time to move now.

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babyjay1 2 years, 4 months ago

Totally off subject but just looking at Gill wearing black (ummm... isn't that a little close to looking like Missery coach?) makes me crazy!! Wear all blue and red for goodness sakes!! Fire him today!

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Jack McEnaney 2 years, 4 months ago

KU really does need to make a splash hire. If you were a talented recruit what would make you want to pick kansas over any other school in the conferencerence? What would bring a good recruit is a great coach. Unfortunately ku does not have the respect in football that it does in basketball. So to get a top coach, kansas needs to accept a little baggage. After firing gil, KU should announce the new coach at halftime of the december tenth game against the ohio state university on natuonal tv espn. The new coach of your jayhawks... JIM TRESSEL!!! How appropriate. With this new big name coach will come major media coverage, relevance, recruiting, and money. How many people believe the jayhawks led by the sweater vest will be disciplined, smart, and play good football? He knows how to win and will save this program.

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WilburNether 2 years, 4 months ago

Just one little problem with Leach: He's suing ESPN. And ESPN is the de facto owner of the KU Athletic Department.

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blackhawkjayhawk 2 years, 4 months ago

Doeren probably will be the next coach. Just read up on him on Wiki. Former DC at Wisconsin, coached at USC, successful this year at UNI and a small-school guy - just like our current AD. Defensive pedigree will help him. Coached here previously. From the area. Exposure at USC and Wisconsin to successful programs.

Seems sort of obvious when you look at it.

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jayhawkinATL 2 years, 4 months ago

Gill isn't going anywhere...just watch. If we don't make significant improvement next year (e.g., winning at least 5 games), then he's gone.

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vd 2 years, 4 months ago

Dave Doeren? Lost to TG coached team.

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Dyrk Dugan 2 years, 4 months ago

top guys (if we do show Gill the door).

Mark Stoops. a great coaching family, plenty of recruiting base knowledge...probably ready to be a head coach.

Brent Venables. would we embrace a KSU player and alum? would he embrace us? his alma mater turned him down twice....why give them a 3rd chance? or does he want to be a career asst. all of his life?

Dave Doeren. Bishop Miege High school....MM's first recruiting coordinator...led UNI to the MAC title game in his first year. knows the area, can recruit probably about anywhere.

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VaJay 2 years, 4 months ago

  1. Urban Meyer (sure its a reach, but why not?)
  2. Leach
  3. Stoops
  4. Anyone, just someone new.
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greenworld 2 years, 4 months ago

I heard Mangino is back in town.

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NebraskaJayhawk 2 years, 4 months ago

While we're at the task of hiring a new coach (assuming this is the case), let's also spend some money on Memorial Stadium. Get rid of that stupid track and lower the field so that we can increase the number of fans and get them closer to the field. There's no reason to build a new stadium. People out of state that visit the campus and the football field in particular think the layout is cool..it's location & the nostalgia. So don't rennovate it...just put more people in the dang place!

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Eybea Opiner 2 years, 4 months ago

Who in their right mind would want the KU job? We hire a guy to fix a disaster, he does, we fire him. We hire a guy to come in and start filling an empty cupboard and give him, essentially, one recruiting class to work with, then fire him.

Only a pariah like Mike Leach, or an unproven assistant would take the job. On the other hand, we have set the bar at $2 million per year with a 5 year "hellandhighwater" contract.

Hmm, maybe I'll take that job.

And while we're shaking things up, I think it's time Dolph bit the bullet and canned that hack, Keegan. Get someone who can consistently write a coherent sentence.

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Janet Scott 2 years, 4 months ago

Zenger has scheduled a teleconference this morning with Lew and Dr. Tommy O of Nebraska to ask them what to do. Both Lew Dr. O are expected to say nothing during the call because they will laughing so hard they can't speak.

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Knoff 2 years, 4 months ago

Firing Turner Gill will be one of Dr. Z's easiest decisions and finding the right guy to replace him probably the toughest he'll make at KU. Our fanbase is ready for a coach who will make us competitive and no longer the laughingstock of the Big 12. We don't expect Big 12 championships every year - just a team that will fight hard and go to bowl games more often than not. The KU job is much better than some seem to think, thankfully Dr. Z understands that and is the right guy to find our next coach. Rock Chalk!!

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MinnesotaJay 2 years, 4 months ago

This isn't even about Turner Gill anymore. Zenger has no choice but to show him the door; otherwise, it's his own job that'll he'll be placing in jeopardy.

Gill. Gone. Good!

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minipman 2 years, 4 months ago

ok.. heres the thing.. some of you have it right and some of you dont. turner is not a proven winner and never was. the only reason he got this job was because he was friends with lew perkins. turners daughter worked in the athletic department before turner was hired here. how do u think she got that job? because of turner and lews friendship. the second thing. the only coaches that should stay are mitchell(rb) and beaty(wr). mainly because they are amazing recruiters. we desperatley need a new strength coach as well. i dont care how good of a guy turner is. he's paid to win football games not be a good person. and he's not winning. i guess they could keep him around to be the team preacher or something. thirdly, there has been no seen improvement this entire year until this last game. and really it wasnt much. horrible play calling and no adjustments. sure they put mathews at Qb but then they took him out after he got a couple first downs. thats just idiot coaching. turner will not be around next year and hopefully neither will most of this staff. if KU wants to get fans back in the seats and keep donors happy then they MUST get a big name coach. even an assistant for a winning SEC program.

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alphajay 2 years, 4 months ago

No new coach is going to give us six wins next year. The current coaching staff won't either without more talented young men coming to KU to play football. Our starters are just about as good as any other team's (top 15 teams being excluded). Our game plans are, too. That's why we've been competitive in first halves. Maybe the trouble is that our depth chart talent is low, compared to the top teams we've played, so that in second halves our best players are gassed from having to play long minutes and their substitutes can't maintain the effort because of the big talent drop that is apparent when its their time to play.

I'm no football expert - I just like to watch and enjoy seeing my team play with success. If we hitch our wagon to a quick fix-next year bowl-big name coach dream, it'll turn into a nightmare. Whomever coaches our Jayhawks next year-be prepared to still be patient.

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Joe Ross 2 years, 4 months ago

He was specific. He was talking about Mark Stoops, and saying that even though Mark wasn't promoted to the HC job at Arizona (in which case he would have succeeded his brother), he could be promoted from DC at FSU to head coach here. Just as Bob Stoops did. Mentioning Mike is not necessary to make his point.

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Ethan Berger 2 years, 4 months ago

What scares me about Leach is defense and recruiting. You don't hire guys so soon after allegations like his. We have a great group of running backs. We need to find a guy who will run a balanced offense. If we go strait for the crazy spread, it might be two more years before we find success. I don't trust these receivers.

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kusportsdotcom 2 years, 4 months ago

" Mark Stoops, the youngest of four brothers from Youngstown, Ohio, is Florida State’s defensive coordinator. No. 1 LSU and No. 2 Alabama are the only BCS schools with defenses that have given up fewer points per game than Florida State’s 15.2. Stoops didn’t make the transition from coordinator to boss at Arizona, you say? Bob Stoops did, I say. Each brother deserves to be judged individually."

I dislike Keegan simply because he is a poor writer. Nowhere in this does he mention Mike Stoops, the guy who got fired at Arizona. Keegan never mentions Mike's name, and when there are 4 Stoops to talk about, you kind of need to be specific. Shoddy.

And, I can't believe there are some people still sticking up for Gill. 1-16 in conference over 2 years deserves an instant fire. Think about it, Gill made $1 million for every game he won this year. That's ludicrous. $6 million to buy him out is not a lot in the grand scheme of things.

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Gregor Southard 2 years, 4 months ago

People on here have been begging LJW to ask the hard questions for 2 months now and now that they're stepping out they're irresponsible journalists? I like the fact that Keegan isn't afraid to call it like he sees it. Doesn't mean he's right all the time, although he is exactly right on this one. Time to show the fan base KU cares about football and hire a proven winner.

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phogphan2000 2 years, 4 months ago

I wonder if Charlie Weis would be a possible hire?

I'm actually pretty happy with Vic Shealy and would have had no problems with Gill being fired a few games ago and Shealy given an opportunity to prove himself as interim coach

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Joe Ross 2 years, 4 months ago

Ridiculous posts, both of them. Keegan has it right on. Gill needs to go, and while everyone realizes it sucks to give Gill more money that he didn't earn (on top of two seasons spent frittering away any shred of respectability in the program), NOT doing so to keep him around would be the greater evil.

Get a clue! Duh.

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blackhawkjayhawk 2 years, 4 months ago

Gill will lose his job primarily because he allowed Chuck Long to lose it for him. Not burning clock in the Baylor game, not trying a back-up or alternative quarterback virtually all season, going away from Matthews today when he clearly was superior in moving the offense, etc., etc. These are really bad coaching decisions. Will they improve next year? Shouldn't the coach be making better decisions than this?

A loss to NDSU, all-time record losses over the past two seasons, coaching ineptitude in key parts of games this season.....those are the things that will require a coaching change.

In answer to Keegan, Stoops wouldn't touch this job with a 10-foot pole. June Jones is the best choice - he's shown that he'll take a risk and he's proven that he can turn programs around. Give him some of the offensive talent we now have, and we might go to a bowl next year.

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jlw53 2 years, 4 months ago

No kidding. Classless pushing for this coaching change for months.

Just report the news, NOT TRY TO CREATE it for your own selfish reasons.

May be time to cancel subscription if this continues

Maybe Dolph needs to reconsider your contract for irresponsible (non)journalism

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pepper_bar 2 years, 4 months ago

Mr. Keegan must think KU's athletic department is printing money. Dude, KU is canceling its Border War series for emotional reasons, leaving seven figures on the table every year. The incompetent suits at KUAC are the problem, and no experienced coach with other options will come anywhere close to taking this job and the unrealistic expectations that come with it.

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