Thursday, December 20, 2012

KU’s annual spring football game set for April 13

Kansas receiver D.J. Beshears takes off for a touchdown on a reverse during the first half of the Spring Game on Saturday, April 28, 2012 at Kivisto Field.

Kansas receiver D.J. Beshears takes off for a touchdown on a reverse during the first half of the Spring Game on Saturday, April 28, 2012 at Kivisto Field.


Kansas University football coach Charlie Weis announced Thursday that this offseason’s annual spring game will take place April 13, 2013.

Weis did not reveal a kickoff time but said the game was moved up a couple of weeks in order to avoid interfering with the Kansas Relays (April 17-20) and to allow his coaching staff more time to recruit.

Spring football will begin March 5, and the Jayhawks will squeeze 14 practices and the spring game into a six-week period, with the players getting the week of spring break to themselves.

Calling all leaders

With 23 seniors leaving the program and many of the returning upperclassmen lacking meaningful playing time, a new group of leaders seems to be emerging inside the KU football complex.

From transfer quarterback Jake Heaps, who sat out 2012 after coming to KU from BYU, to sophomore linebacker Ben Heeney, who led the team and finished third in the Big 12 in tackles last season, and all kinds of guys in between, Weis said he made it very clear that the need for leadership was there.

“They’re gone now,” said Weis of KU’s former field generals. “So there’s a natural opportunity for (guys) to step up. If you have it in you, now’s the time to go ahead and show it. And it’s not just Jake, and it’s not just Ben, but there’s a bunch of guys that are kind of moved into that type of category.”

Asked if the number of potential leaders was greater than he expected, Weis was honest about his uncertainty.

“I didn’t know how many to expect,” he said. “But one thing, you can’t fake leadership; either you have it or you don’t have it. And when coaches try to make guys into leaders that aren’t leaders, guess what, it doesn’t work out very well. I’m hoping that some of the leaders on our team aren’t even here yet.”

Staff to return intact

After any 1-11 season, questions arise about whether all of a programs coaches will return the following season, but Weis made it clear Thursday that he expected his entire coaching staff to return for 2013.

“I told everyone there’s no one getting thrown under the bus,” Weis said.

The possibility exists, of course, that any one of Weis’ assistants could explore the idea of taking a job elsewhere, but KU’s second-year head coach did not seem to think that would be a problem.

“I said, ‘If I hear you’re looking for another job, I’m looking for another coach,’” Weis said. “It’s a very simple system. So I think you should expect us to be back intact.”

Grimes hired by Auburn

Former KU offensive line coach, J.B. Grimes, who worked under Turner Gill at KU in 2010 and 2011, has been hired by Gus Malzahn for the same role at Auburn.

Grimes, a native of Clarendon, Ark., coached under Malzahn at Arkansas State during 2012 and elected to follow the former Auburn offensive coordinator back to the SEC shortly after Malzahn was introduced as the Tigers’ new head coach earlier this month.

“J.B. is a tremendous coach who is one of the nation’s top teachers at the offensive line position,” Malzahn said in a statement released Wednesday night. “He played a vital role in our team’s success this past season.”

Grimes will coach Arkansas State in the Bowl and will join Auburn shortly thereafter.


hawkdds 1 year, 3 months ago

For those of us who can no longer walk the hills and can't donate 10,000 a year to the williams fund to park at the door, parking is the #1 reason we stay at home even though we'd love to be there in person. The atmosphere and scenery are second to none but I don't have an answer, fortunately most of the games are now televised.


Darius80 1 year, 3 months ago

I'll wait until the season starts. No kool-aid this time around. I'll believe it when I see it.


rtwngr 1 year, 3 months ago

Grimes might be a pretty good coach. It's too bad that he hitched his wagon to a loser like Gill. That kind of thing can stick with a coach a long time and doesn't wash off at all. The head coaches failures look like the assistant's failures after a while. That reasoning doesn't necessarily hold with Romeo Crenell. He's just a bad coach, period.


jayhawkintx1973 1 year, 3 months ago

I'm not afraid of being optimistic. The world isn't going to end if we're disappointed.


Here are the wins.

Texas Tech Baylor Iowa State Rice Louisiana Tech South Dakota TCU


Adam Gerval 1 year, 3 months ago

I'm glad you brought up the question of renovations, sybesma. There should be a statue of this man somewhere around Memorial Stadium...

He was a KU student and was the first American casualty in WWI. The thing about Memorial Stadium is that there is so much that can be done with it. It is after all a war memorial. But anyways. We all know the main points, get rid of the track, fence, etc. But there are also small things that can be done that would make it so cool. Anyways, that's just my thought.


texashawk10 1 year, 3 months ago

The defensive coordinator returning, first time since 2009, and running the same scheme as the year before, first time since 2008, will equal the defense being significantly better next year. The defense can actually focus on getting better this offseason instead of learning a new defensive scheme. That will make a huge difference next season and result in better play from the defense.


Jayhawk470 1 year, 3 months ago

Hard to get excited about the football season. For one thing, we're in the thick of basketball season right now; and for another thing, I don't see us winning more than 1 game in 2013.


Kyle Sybesma 1 year, 3 months ago

This offseason I'd like to hear some chatter about renovations of Memorial Stadium. Something's gotta get done.


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