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Thursday, October 13, 2011

Keegan

Athletes need support

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Saturday’s game between Oklahoma and Kansas involves a suspense factor. It’s located in the stands. KU students who hold season tickets can bring another student free of charge for the 8:15 p.m. kickoff televised on ESPN2.

How many students will take advantage? If the answer is not many, the empty seats will add to the negative vibe of this football season. If it’s plenty, one day after Late Night, count that as a loud statement the students want their school to be known as more than a basketball powerhouse.

Senior tight end Tim Biere, the team’s most experienced player and its best, has started for four years.

“You never really know what the students are going to do around here, but, I mean, hopefully, they’ll show up and be loud,” Biere said. “When they’re into the game, it does make a difference. So hopefully, they show up and yell really loud on Saturday.”

Sophomore cornerback Tyler Patmon, an Academic All-Big 12 selection a year ago, also didn’t know what to expect.

“It’s prime time on ESPN. I expect people to come out and support us,” he said. “But I really haven’t played an 8 o’clock game, so I don’t know if that’s better than an 11 o’clock game or a 2 o’clock game.”

From the outside, it seems a shame that KU’s rare chance at this sort of national exposure comes in a game that on paper looks so lopsided.

“We don’t go into it looking at it like that at all,” Biere said. “We look at it as an opportunity to play the best team in the nation and compete with them. We’re going into it trying to win. We expect to win. Playing a game like that on ESPN will be great. There are a lot of young guys who haven’t gotten to be on ESPN yet. It’ll be a fun atmosphere Saturday night.”

Said Patmon: “I’m glad it’s this one. It’s a challenge. It’s one of the top three teams in the nation coming to play us at our home.”

It takes a freshman student body to change a fan culture at a university. If a freshman class is wooed into making attending each football game as automatic as ambling ever-so-slowly on campus crosswalks to keep cars waiting for an extra long time, it then passes that culture down to the next freshman class, which in turn does the same to the next one.

Kansas plays more freshmen than most schools, so this would seem a decent year for the freshman student body to begin to establish a serious football culture.

Running backs Tony Pierson, Darrian Miller and Brandon Bourbon are in the first of four years of eligibility, as is receiver JaCorey Shepherd. Defensive end Javonte Daniel needs to pack on some pounds, but has the makings of a speed rusher. Outside linebacker Michael Reynolds has speed built for blitzing and for dropping into pass coverage. Speedy safety Victor Simmons will get more time Saturday.

“We have a great freshman class,” Reynolds said. “Hopefully, the students will come out to the game. We’ll need their fan support. I just hope they can stay with us through the year.”

If freshmen students turn out in big numbers Saturday, nobody ever can accuse them of front-running.

Comments

HawkNVegas 2 years, 6 months ago

Beg some more it's such a positive way to write a useless article.

I heard "If You Beg, They won't Come"

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Bill Shaw 2 years, 6 months ago

Support? They already have scholarships.
Who wants to watch a bunch of students fail?
Support the students who make the Dean's list instead.

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jayhawkintx1973 2 years, 6 months ago

33 hours, and counting until 89-0.

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squawkhawk 2 years, 6 months ago

It is pretty pathetic that the local media and the KU AD department have to beg KU fans to attend a football game. It says a lot about the direction this program is headed.

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Fred Whitehead Jr. 2 years, 6 months ago

This guy who calls himself "Oklalhoma Sooner" just may not even know what a "Sooner" is in a historical perspective. He sounds like my Aunt Edna (In Oklahoma)who has perfected melodious prose like "That don't make me no never mind".

Yeah, we (Sooner Fans) have a lot of blowhards, jerks, and goofy people who profess to support our teams. When your team demonstrates great skill and accomplishment, you tend to attract two sorts of obnoxious people. Folks who would not have given a plugged nickle for your team's game tickets back in the Gomer Jones era or the Howard Schnellenbarger era. People forget that there have been bad times too.

And those who are lacking much in the way of any civility and polish will stand up in a ball game and scream "rip his (obscene adjective deleated) head off". I think there are a few of those in the KU crowd on occasion.

I am a life long Oklahoma fan, I have been so since way back in the Bud Wilkinson era, and have cheered for my Sooners for many years through thick and thin. Loosing 5 games in a row has only happened rarely, but it does not cause you to become highly critical of your team, you just have to learn to shrug it off and hope for better times.

At this time, OU has achieved great success with it's football program and hopefully will continue on to a national championship. But we all know the pitfalls that await us, we have to go play in Stoolwater, also, later this year.

There are all sorts of fans. Some are fair-weather fans (time of night notwithstanding), some are obnoxious, some are dedicated, belong to the Sooner network and the Soooner kids club for their younguns. I just hope that those of my home state fans that come to Lawrence to see the late night with Bobby Stoops presentation behave themselves and make the University of Oklahoma look gracious and civil.

Boomer Sooner from me too!!!

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d_park 2 years, 6 months ago

you moos sure know how to party

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d_park 2 years, 6 months ago

you moos sure know how to party

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eastcoasthawk 2 years, 6 months ago

I just don't get it. Yesterday Keegan was saying to the world, while the team and coach still say believe, there is nothing left to believe in. Today, he tells the students to come out and support the team.

Many moons ago when I was in school, our team was pretty much the bottom of the Big 8 yet we always gave OU a scare when they came to town. We had a 1-10 season in 78' yet OU had to pull the win out 17-16. Not sure what it was but we always battled OU more than other Big 8 teams when they came to town. I just hope we see that kind of fight in the Jayhawks this Saturday.

RCJHKU!

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manginorh00lz 2 years, 6 months ago

The most powerful message that we can send as fans is to NOT attend a nationally televised game. An empty stadium on national TV will show more clearly than anything else that Gill has to go now.

And don't start with the "but we're broke" nonsense. KUAC can cover his buyout and still have plenty leftover to get a new coach.

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90sHawk 2 years, 6 months ago

I'd like to see some support on Saturday night. A televised game, so let's create a great atmosphere. It'd also be nice if people would stick around longer, regardless of how the game is going. Drinking and partying can wait, and IT WILL wait. That booze isn't going anywhere folks, so let's all support the football team on Saturday!

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KGphoto 2 years, 6 months ago

Absolutely they need support. It wouldn't hurt to support the coaches as well. It's not as if they aren't trying. Turner Gill has done everything in his power to create a winning environment for KU football. He said he doesn't want to settle for winning either. He wants to build a dynasty! Whether he does or not, that kind of statement shows his commitment to KU.

Even if all the complaining and cursing and sarcasm were actually enough to get him removed, it's still disrespectful to a guy who has totally committed himself to representing our school and it's fans.

Rebuilding is frustrating, and there are plenty of reasons to be angry. I just don't think it should be directed at any individual like it has been here. Lew Perkins, for Gill haters, would be a logical choice if one simply cannot stop pointing fingers. He hired Gill, after all. But don't forget he also hired Skip Holtz and later Randy Edsall, and literally put UConn football on the map.

Randy Edsall had never been a head coach at any level when he took over UConn football's head coaching duties, and they were switching to 1-A. His first season he went 4-7. The second year he was 3-8. He finally dipped to 2-10 and was blown out 52-10 by the only ranked team they faced, VTech, and lost to Temple in the final game of the year 56-7

It wasn't until Edsall's fourth year that things started to come together and the Huskies posted a 6-6 record. In 2003 they went 9-3. In 2004 they blew out Toledo in the Motor City Bowl, and in 2007 they were the co-Big East champs.

I'm sure a lot of people were disrespectful to Edsall during those first few years, but it just shows how ignorant some fans and sports writers can be. In addition, Edsall's success shows that maybe Lew knows a little more about hiring coaches, than they care to believe.

So get out there and support that players AND the coaches. In a couple of years you'll be one of the few that can say "I told you so".

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ardy682 2 years, 6 months ago

Does anybody here play the game " I am gonno guess the writer based on the title of the article". I always win with Keegan, the king of terrible articles and lame titles.

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KUbsee69 2 years, 6 months ago

On the free ticket subject:

Unfortunately, this is not a new idea. I remember about 20 year ago, a Kansas City area grocery store was giving away one free OU-KU FB game ticket for each eight-pack of Charmin toilet paper purchased. No joke.

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jayhawkintx1973 2 years, 6 months ago

Will KU be able to give tickets away? This is not a good sign for this program. If they have to give away tickets.

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jayhawkintx1973 2 years, 6 months ago

So, students can take another student free of charge. Does this not demonstrate that revenues are down because of getting beat by margins of 50 or more points on a regular basis?

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danmoore 2 years, 6 months ago

Read the story about Isaac Wright and how he has struggled to get where he is. All we have to do is show up at Memorial 6 times a year. How hard is that?

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ChicagoJHawk 2 years, 6 months ago

I remember some of the few football games I went to when I was going to KU. Most of the time it was early in the season and 100+ degrees and humid as hell. Our team was getting completely destroyed. We weren't even remotely close by any means. Guess what? I left the game almost every time.

If we were just down a touchdown or 2 or even 3 then I'd stay but why would I stay & suffer in the 100+ degree heat & humidity to watch my team continue to get destroyed?? Blaming the fan support is weak! This team needs to step up their game and people will start showing up. They have improved a lot from last year, although our record doesn't show it. It might take another season or 2 but I think Turner Gill will turn things around and we will be a respectable football team.

As for that d-bag OklahomaSooners fan, get a life. We know we're going to beat you guys in basketball every year but do we go on your message boards and talk sh*t before each game?

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AlexTJ 2 years, 6 months ago

Mr. Keegan - The complementary ticket offered to the students for the game will work for ANYONE. Not just students!!

That's right guys as a student I'm bringing my parents in for FREE (with my gf's comp ticket as well of course) That means you football fans have no excuse not to come with plenty of cheap tickets floating around from students! If you know a student remind them to pick up their ticket at the fieldhouse so you can snag it from them!

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jaymar74 2 years, 6 months ago

Keegan and a majority of the posters on this site need to understand you can't be critical of everything this team of 18-20 year olds does and then also be critical of the support when it drops. This is not a professional team, it is my (our?) university. Support it and the student players through good and bad times or go be critical of a pro team somewhere. Give these student atheletes a break and stop ripping everything they do or making up scenerios where they hate the coaching staff.

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jgkojak 2 years, 6 months ago

So what Keegan is saying by the headline is...

Let's all get out there and be a bunch of athletic supporters!

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Robert Brock 2 years, 6 months ago

I hope that Kaleb Tarczewski leaves before the OU-KU game; it would be a shame to show him how fair-weather the students are.

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milwaukeeJAYHAWK 2 years, 6 months ago

guys...don't respond to OU, Mizzou or other school trolls. That's a #1 rule of internet message boards...don't feed the trolls.

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MDHawk 2 years, 6 months ago

Just go to the game, and stay the whole time. It's really not that hard...there isn't a single game I've gone to in the last 20 years where I've left early. Is it somewhat sad they're giving away a free ticket to season ticket holders? Perhaps, if you perceive it as a hint that no one wants to go. However, a true fan would see it as an opportunity to bring a friend and pack the house. One thing KU fans know is how awesome it is to fill a venue...recall Allen Fieldhouse every frickin' game. You want an Allen Fieldhouse type experience for football? Show up every time, no questions asked. No matter how you feel about TG, SZ, or any other set of initials, it takes fans to build a program. Players want to play in a full stadium, coaches want an environment that sells itself. For those who think our stadium needs a facelift, what's the best way to get recruits to see past that? A packed house, every time. Anybody can build a fancy locker room, weight room...you know you've arrived at a program when the fans start pouring in the doors.

We fill Allen for so many more games...how much easier would it be so fill Memorial for only half a dozen games a year? All our belly-aching on here accomplishes zilch...the people who really have clout at this university aren't likely wasting time posting on a message board. What can the rest of us do to help build our program?

Show up. Be loud. I'll be there, and so will my friend with his free ticket. I freakin' love KU, whether we're good or bad. Rock Chalk!

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tis4tim 2 years, 6 months ago

When people choose where they want to spend their hard-earned money, they choose to go to an event that they believe is going to be fun and that will help them forget the grind for a few hours. Watching your favorite team get humiliated is not the recipe for a good time in most people's books. A good product sells itself and until KU puts a better product on the field, no amount of cajoling or coercion is going to improve fan turnout.

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Keith Richards 2 years, 6 months ago

I received an email yesterday with 2 for 1 tickets. So 2 tickets for $40 each. That isn't bad to see this game. The funny thing is the the email said they were OU's returned allotment of tickets. If true that shows how bad OU fans are.

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jhox 2 years, 6 months ago

8:15 start times don't help attendance, especially for a game that looks to be as lopsided as this one. If we were a competitive team, an 8:15 game may have more appeal, but who wants to stay up until midnight to watch what is sure to be a blowout?

I'll be there to support the team, but I can honestly say I'm not looking forward to it. Because it is OU, and because they travel well, we may have a decent crowd for the start of the game, but don't look for KU fans to stay long if it gets out of hand early. It pains me to write this, but the situation is what it is.

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Andy Tweedy 2 years, 6 months ago

The people who think boycotting the team until they win are seriously disillusioned! I'm not usually on board with Keegan, but he's right about this. Ahpersay wants a big-time coach or somebody with more experience, but who in their right mind is going to come to Kansas when it's clear that our students don't care about football? It is truly a culture, and Lawrence just doesn't have it. When I came to Lawrence in 1986, from Nebraska, I just for the life of me couldn't understand why more people weren't at the games. Sure, we sucked, but empty seats weren't going to change that. I routinely make half the home games from 200 miles away, and that's about the same as a lot of students who are coming from across campus. Pretty lame!

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johnnyhrdwd 2 years, 6 months ago

Wait till the media has it's field day with the free ticket thing. Highlights of Oklahoma scoring their 9th TD of the with the commentary off "KU is begging for their fans to watch this, they were giving away free tickets." We're in trouble if a ticket to see the #1 team in the country who travels well ain't worth 50 bucks.

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manginorh00lz 2 years, 6 months ago

Boycott football until Gill is gone.

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Ferd Magellan 2 years, 6 months ago

This is an eerily positive call to arms from Keegan. We all may want a new staff, but the players deserve our support. A packed house for another drumming would send a clear message to Zenger and BGL that we will be there for games and expect a team that can win. By not showing up little effort will be made to buy out his contract.

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texashawk10 2 years, 6 months ago

As for the article itself, this is actually one the best articles Keegan has written in a long time. Keegan is right that in order to change the culture among the students of not giving a damn about football, it needs to start with incoming freshmen. There are two schools that have good ideas about bringing in students for football games to look at and maybe some combination of the two ideas would work. The two schools to look at are Baylor and Duke. Baylor has the Freshmen Line which is the group of Baylor students you see in the gold/yellow jerseys on TV. They form the path for the football team out of the tunnel at Floyd Casey and are the ones who create the energy in the student section and most of them are still there at the end of games. I know a few people who have gone to Baylor and were part of the Line and it's something that gets students involved with the football team from the their first year on campus and for the most part, carries through until they graduate and beyond. At Duke, it is a requirement of any student who wishes to buy basketball season tickets to also have to purchase football tickets for Duke football. I don't know how many of those students actually go to the football games, but some combination of these two ideas at KU would be a start to actually making change happen and fostering a culture of caring about football at KU regardless of how good or bad the football team is.

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texashawk10 2 years, 6 months ago

You "Jayhawk" fans who are cheering for OU to hang 100 on KU, what happens then if OU does do that? Will that make you happy because Gill isn't going anywhere unless you Jayhawk "fans" pony up the money to make it happen. All you people who have talked about no longer donating to the athletic department or attending games until changes are made, how do you think KU is going to pay for any of the changes you people want without the money to do so?

Right now, I'm actually ashamed to be a KU fan and alum and it has absolutely nothing to do with KU's on-field performance and everything to do with the way this "fanbase" has behaved over the past year and how poisonous and stupid this "fanbase" has become in regards to realignment and football. You don't like the coach, go to the game and hold up signs stating your displeasure with the way the coach is performing. You want KU to look attractive to other conferences for realignment, fill up Memorial Stadium every weekend and show other conferences that fans at KU care about football. All refusing to go the games and selling tickets to visiting fans does is continue to show the administration and other conferences that KU football "fans" don't care about the football program and have no interest in its fate. All refusing to show up for football games does is continue the status quo for KU football.

If you want to see true change and to have a real impact on KU football, money talks. Spend your money at Memorial Stadium going to KU football games so the school will have to money to make improvements that many of you have complained about and to pay a big named coach the $3-4 million dollar salary you want to see happen. Donate money to the athletic department and earmark for a specific use whether it be for the olympic village (that has to be done before there is any consideration of removing the track at Memorial Stadium), or for a buyout of Gill's contract, or to help pay Perkins or Mangino's settlements which are still being paid. Donate money so that KU can afford to offer a $3-4 million per year contract to Jim Tressel or Butch Davis or any other name that has been tossed out there. If all you are going to do is complain about SZ, BGL, and TG without doing anything about it (donating money), then you are just as guilty of fostering a environment of failure at KU as those who turn a blind eye to it. I've got a new slogan for the KU "fans" wanting change: Put up or shut up. Put up the money to make changes happen or shut the hell up about it.

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ahpersecoachingexperience 2 years, 6 months ago

And just you wait for this weeks version of the gridiron. It's seriously about winning the second half. That's right! Our starters vs Osu's third string.

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chalkitup1811 2 years, 6 months ago

Oklahoma Sooners: your an idiot and an embarrasment to OU fans get off of here. I live in OKC and all my friends go to ou and they think you're an idiot talkin sh*t on kansas' program and fans like you know what you're talking about. We have just as good of fans and support as oklahoma does. the difference is you guys have a rich football tradition and we have a rich basketball tradition.not to mention it's all about recruiting yeah we might need a d coordinator but if you get the right kids in the system you are gonna win ball games and if kansas can't even keep thier best highschool players in the state,thats a problem for recruiting everywhere. it's not the fans makes a team good it's the players that make a team good. the fans aren't playing the players are. so don't be dumb and act like ou's success has come off of fans because the success is coming from who is being recruited. and you can thank Bob and his staff for that When you win fans come out to see you when you lose they don't. remember OU football in the 90's ?

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iluvdbskxjayhawks 2 years, 6 months ago

Give them your support jayhawks! Fill the stands and don't leave until the game ends. It'll probably be a blowout but be there for the players. They need our moral support. why are we the only school that allowed our game to be televised on longhorn network? wth? i'm upset over our AD for making that decision. Other big 12 schools should make their own big 12 network. I rather support that then the Longhorn network. Make it happen, Big 12 network!!!!

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Dillon Davis 2 years, 6 months ago

I don't think it's fair to put the generalization on all of us students that we only care about being a basketball school, when in fact many of us want a very competitive football team. After the 07-08 year, I think football really got the attention of this university and after experiencing some success we don't want to go back. I think that's obvious by looking at all of our comments on here after the last few games. We care and we want them to be successful. But we can't help it if the freshmen don't feel the same. A lot of them didn't have the chance to experience what some of us did a few years ago. All they've known so far is a team that gets records set on them.

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OklahomaSooners 2 years, 6 months ago

Yeah buddy. Hopefully y'all can drum up some student interest, lol. We got 50,000 that R comin to fill up your box. Got my DVR set to see what Kirk thinks about Big Snoop Dog laying down 135 points at your fine stadium. No offense, but he dosnt like that Bevo network at all yall signed with. He's keepin his finger on the gearshifter until the final gun of the 4th. Stoops'll bury that bone 18 times 4 good measure 4 a cool stroll into the NCAA record book.

Roll sportscenter roll!

Lookin 4ward to Saturday!

Boomer Sooner!

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DSommersby 2 years, 6 months ago

Should be a beautiful night in Lawrence. The football team is struggling, but they need our support and what a great way to spend a fall night.

OU brings in an incredible team, but I am confident the fans and alumni will fill the stands and give the team great support. Rock Chalk Jayhawks!

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