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Originally published January 19, 2012 at 09:59a.m., updated January 20, 2012 at 12:00a.m.

Charlie Weis names DeMontie Cross as new KU linebackers coach

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Kansas University football coach Charlie Weis on Thursday named DeMontie Cross as KU’s linebackers coach, the final piece to Weis’ coaching-staff puzzle.

Cross, who recently finished his first season as special-teams coordinator and safeties coach at the University of Wisconsin, arrives at Kansas with college and NFL experience.

Prior to his one season at Wisconsin, Cross spent the previous five seasons in various positions with the Buffalo Bills. He joined the Bills as a defensive/special-teams assistant in 2006 and was promoted to assistant linebackers coach/special teams for three seasons. In 2010 Cross was promoted again, coaching the Bills’ inside linebackers.

Cross made the jump to the NFL after spending the 2001-05 seasons as Iowa State’s outside-linebackers coach and special-teams coordinator.

While at Iowa State, Cross’ unit made major contributions to the Cyclones’ record-setting defenses during his stint. He helped develop Jeremy Loyd into an All-Big 12 performer; Loyd went on to play for the St. Louis Rams.

Cross, a St. Louis native, began his coaching career as the outside-linebackers coach at his alma mater, Missouri (1998-99).

A 1997 Missouri graduate with a bachelor’s degree in business management, Cross made 415 career tackles at free safety for the Tigers from 1994-96. He led Missouri in tackles as a junior and senior and earned second-team all-conference honors from the Big Eight in 1995 and the Big 12 in 1996.

With the hiring of Cross, Weis’ Kansas football coaching staff is complete: Jeff Blasko (assistant special-teams coordinator/tight ends), Clint Bowen (special-teams coordinator/defensive backs), Dave Campo (defensive coordinator/defensive backs), Tim Grunhard (offensive line), Rob Ianello (recruiting coordinator/wide receivers), Reggie Mitchell (running backs), Ron Powlus (quarterbacks) and Buddy Wyatt (defensive line).

Berglund issues statement

Former KU quarterback Brock Berglund, who was dismissed from the team Monday for missing Sunday’s mandatory team meeting, issued a statement through his attorney Thursday which explained that KU still had not released Berglund to transfer to another school.

Berglund’s request for release was made in an email to various members of the KU athletic department a couple of hours before the team meeting and is currently being reviewed by KU’s Student-Athlete Appeals Board.

“The SAAB inquiry will focus on whether the decision was fair and just given the circumstances,” wrote Berglund’s attorney, Vince Linden. “Any objective observer, shown all the facts, will know that the decision was not only unfair, but was arbitrary and capricious, and should be overturned. It will be very interesting to hear KU’s explanation, particularly in light of the fact that it so gleefully courted players who were granted releases from their own respective programs, and wished the best of luck by their former coaches.”

A KU spokesperson said university officials had no comment because the matter is pending an appeal. A decision is expected in the next week or so.

The press release also revealed a couple of things about KU’s quarterback plans, past and present: For starters, Berglund claims that he was told by the previous coaching staff that he would compete for the starting job immediately. What’s more, the release indicates that Powlus, the current KU quarterbacks coach, told Berglund that Notre Dame transfer Dayne Crist would start in 2012.

Crawley visit ongoing?

Washington, D.C., cornerback Kenneth Crawley, a four-star prospect out of H.D. Woodson High who recently backed out of his commitment to Tennessee, announced Thursday on Twitter that he was on a flight bound for Kansas.

Crawley, 6-foot-1, 170 pounds, is teammates with former KU commitment De’Jon Wilson, who had pledged to join the Jayhawks but backed out after the firing of Turner Gill and now is orally committed to Colorado.

According to Rivals.com, Crawley is the No. 2-ranked cornerback in Maryland and the 21st-ranked player at his position overall.

With just two weekends remaining before signing day (Feb. 1), KU, which has oral commitments from a dozen players in the Class of 2012 — plus three already on campus — figures to turn things up a notch in an attempt to fill out Weis’ first recruiting class.

Some recruiting analysts have said that KU could have as many as 10 visitors in town this weekend. Included among them are: Crawley, Florida linebacker Schyler Miles and East Los Angeles CC cornerback Nasir Moore.

Comments

55jayhawk 2 years, 3 months ago

You guys who keep bad mouthing our players, coaches, and anything else that comes from your s@#t for brains head, need to go somewhere else to vent your dumb out of place remarks. I have followed your comments from time to time and am sick of all of you that keep beating certain folks down and the schools they came from. You may think it's in good fun but I'm telling you it's not! Until you have worn the uniform like some of us have at KU, keep your GD mouths shut because that will tear our atheletic family apart faster than anything!

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missouricat 2 years, 3 months ago

DeMontie Cross, ah, yea, I remember him. He is a very good coach.Graduated from Missouri in 1997, as a 3 year letterwinner as a free safety. Led Missoujri in tackles his junior and senier year. Looks like you got a very good one there.

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hawk4evr2 2 years, 3 months ago

Perkins was one of the worst things to ever happen to KU athletics. We are just now starting to crawl out of the mess that he created for us. It's foolish at best to think Perkins was the best AD in KU's history. He did much more harm than good.

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Greg Ledom 2 years, 3 months ago

Drew Jennings hired HCBS. He was post Bohl and pre Perkins.

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Greg Ledom 2 years, 3 months ago

Bowen was an excellent position coach for us. Only when he was named DC did he struggle.

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orbiter 2 years, 3 months ago

"He hired Bill Self too" --no he didn't

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Calijhawk 2 years, 3 months ago

For all the bashing we do of Lew Perkins, and there is plenty that he deserves, one thing we need to thank him for -- the football complex. Without the upgrade in facilities, there is no way HCCW even takes Sheahon Zenger's call.

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beebe1 2 years, 3 months ago

Back during M's stay, there appeared to be a VERY worthy SS Coordinator at Iowa State. Maybe it was Cross. For example, when IS did an onsides kickoff, every man on the kickoff team knew exactly where the ball was going, and they knew their assignments -- block out KU 'receptors', and the key guy knew he was to get inside his team and make the catch! They did it to perfection.

That was remarkable coaching! It was not the only play they made that was well coached.

Bowen worries me. He isn't really qualified to coach defense, but he is the SS Coordinator.

Whoever that coach was -- he would be a goldmine of a hire. If it was Cross, and he has some influence, maybe Bowen could get wised up. He is a local guy, and seems to have some personality. He just had the world's worst coordinator when he played at KU.

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hawk4evr2 2 years, 3 months ago

Sasha was from Russia and that worked out pretty good for us. Lets not worry about where they are from, just be glad they want to work for and wear Kansas across their chest.

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Ben Kliewer 2 years, 3 months ago

Are some of you really bitching and moaning about hiring a Missouri grad? It's Missouri, not the USSR.

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Tony Bandle 2 years, 3 months ago

As far as I am concerned, as long as he kept Reggie Mitchell...the rest is gravy!!

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april28 2 years, 3 months ago

Staff Theme: Tons of NFL experience - we'll get you to the league.

Recruiting Strategy: Grunhard - KC, Cross - Stl, Wyatt and Campo - TX Reggie and Ianello - everywhere else

If we win Kansas every year in recruiting, if we win KC and begin winning in MO - then add some key Texas or National recruits, then we can compete year-in and year-out.

I respect what Weis has done, but don't underestimate Zenger. He knows his football. I'm sure that he has had some say in the overall staffing strategy.

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d_park 2 years, 3 months ago

I could see KU getting Macaulay Culkin'd for this coaching staff move. Oh, brother!

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Robert Brock 2 years, 3 months ago

Missouri...didn't they used to be in the Big 12 or something?

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Geekinout 2 years, 3 months ago

Welcome to the good (non-slavery) side DeMontie...

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eddiesuttonschoolofdriving 2 years, 3 months ago

In general this staff is tremendous. It needs to be mentioned though that Wisconsin fans will tell you that their special teams play was the weak link all year. The Badgers gave up a huge number of long kick returns and had field goals or punts blocked in crucial games. Cross was not well regarded by Badger fans. Of course its not all his fault but still needs to be said amongst all the adulation.

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Micah Mandy Haase 2 years, 3 months ago

Kenneth Crawley is on his way to Kansas per his tweet...

By tonight we going to see if it's official we're on the flight to kansas

Now that we have a full staff with all those rings we can start pulling them in.

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orbiter 2 years, 3 months ago

Was all this no-MU grads happening when everyone was begging for Jim Leavitt to be our DC?

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jay381 2 years, 3 months ago

My congratulations to HCCW. This group of coaches would be impressive to any university including the traditional football powerhouses. Time will tell if these men are able to eradicate the low points of KU football. However, with that said I think this gives KU the absolute best opportunity to succeed I can ever remember for KU football. I will admit when I first heard the hiring of HCCW I was somewhat surprised (not in a negative or positive way, just surprised). However every move the man has made since he became HC is absolutely impressive. This could be one heck of a solid foundation for the future. I also totally congratulate AD Zenger for the totally professional way he conducted the search. I really based on what I see to this point do not see how anyone could not be absolutely enthusiastic about spring football and next season (although lets not get too carried away he has a lot of holes to fill next season). I think win or lose we will have a team that will be well coached and a team to be proud of both on and off the field. I would think everyone would and should be proud of the actions taken to set the tone for behavior and the type of environment he wants to recruit to in the future. AN ABSOLUTELY GREAT START AND CONGRATULATIONS TO THE NEW STAFF.

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2 years, 3 months ago

A friend of mine, who is a leader in the KU Alumni Association, went to MU for undergrad and KU for law school. He is one of most devout Jayhawk fans you will ever meet, so it is possible to convert them :^)

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kugrad93 2 years, 3 months ago

The people who are complaining about him being a Mizzou grad need to grow up. That was 15 years ago. He spent five years at Iowa State, so he obviously has no problem working at another Big 12 school.

You might remember that Bill Self spent more than 10 years as Oklahoma State as a player and assistant. His first staff at KU included an assistant (Jankovich) who played and coached at KSU and also had been an assistant at Texas, Baylor and OSU before coming here.

Mangino worked at OU and KSU before he came to KU.

Zenger has degrees from KSU and KU.

The point is, coaches and ADs give their loyalty to whoever signs their checks. The guy has been successful in the college ranks and has NFL experience. He's a KU guy now. Let Misery fans worry about whether or not they like him working for us.

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amatxjayhawk 2 years, 3 months ago

I'm OK with his undergraduate school. He's been around long enough and had enough experience to live that down. And besides, they are but a figment. They no longer exist. They do not anger or rile me one way or the other. They are like an ex- girlfriend. Of whom were you speaking?

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Jayhawk444 2 years, 3 months ago

So Weis is the Offensive Coordinator, right? I thought I saw where he wanted to have an assistant OC as part of his staff to groom/mentor into a full-time OC position. Anybody know what's going on there?

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jhawkrulz 2 years, 3 months ago

You had me, until you said MU...than I decided to puke a little.

I'm not a fan at all of adding a Tigger to the mix...

HCCW was making me feel so good, coordinators, recruits (not to mention 5 Star recruits), position coaches, great interviews, appearances at other sporting events, everything was perfect...than he throws a tiger into the mix. It's going to take me a few days to get over this one...if ever.

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jayhawkintx1973 2 years, 3 months ago

Super strong staff. I also found that 4 recruits from ESPNU150 have added Kansas to their list. 12 days until national signing day. Rock Chalk.

Dave Campo, and he do this? I think so. He did at Miami, and he did with the Cowboys(very difficult league there where everyone is a five star).

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Sayers44 2 years, 3 months ago

Cross has the experience.

He has paid his dues.

Welcome to Kansas.

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KGphoto 2 years, 3 months ago

"During my time as head coach I have tried to hire DeMontie a number of times and the timing was finally right. He will be heavily involved in special teams as well as with our defensive staff. He is a tremendous addition and will help our recruiting efforts in the St. Louis area. DeMontie's hiring strengthens our staff and will help us continue to improve as a football team."

-Wisconsin head coach Bret Bielema

Now go get DGB, DeMontie!!

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Andy Hess 2 years, 3 months ago

A former Mizzou player at LB coach? Coach Fambrough is turning over in his grave, and I don't like it.

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Kyle Rohde 2 years, 3 months ago

Wow. Interesting to see another coach left Wisconsin so fast - they've lost a tremendous amount of coaches this off-season.

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Brandon Pope 2 years, 3 months ago

Not too shabby. Now lets get to work and get this thing turned around. KU football has NEVER been in the kind of position for success it is in right now. These guys have to get it done.

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Bud Stagg 2 years, 3 months ago

they gotta have one guy on staff to get the coffee and donuts.

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justinryman 2 years, 3 months ago

A tiger? Wow so let down by that. It was looking good, and then Whamo!

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Kevin Long 2 years, 3 months ago

Overall I'm very happy with the staff here! If you would have told me a year ago that this would be our new staff I would have said your crazy. Now is the hard part of putting all together and going out and winning. Time will tell, but i'm very excited for next season!

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