Wednesday, May 30, 2012


Charlie Weis shows national scope

Kansas head coach Charlie Weis calls a play during the first half of the Spring Game on Saturday, April 28, 2012 at Kivisto Field.

Kansas head coach Charlie Weis calls a play during the first half of the Spring Game on Saturday, April 28, 2012 at Kivisto Field.


It’s early to draw any concrete conclusions on where, other than in the home state and neighboring Missouri, the new Kansas University football staff will concentrate its recruiting efforts.

But it’s not too early to get a hint. Thus far, it looks as if the Charlie Weis recruiting net will more closely resemble Glen Mason’s than Mark Mangino’s.

Mason, who played at Ohio State and came to KU from the head-coaching position at Kent State, had a national/Big Ten flavor to his recruiting. He started at home with Kansas and Missouri, then took a national recruiting approach, drawing equally from California, Florida, Michigan, Ohio and Texas.

Mangino, who had worked at Kansas State and Oklahoma, concentrated his efforts in Big 12 country, heavy with Texas players first, then Kansas, Oklahoma and Missouri.

Weis spent five years coaching at Notre Dame, the ultimate national football program. He built a national name in the NFL, so it stands to reason he would have national appeal as a recruiter. lists 34 players from the next recruiting class who have received scholarship offers from KU, three of whom have made oral commitments. The geographic breakdown: five from California and Missouri, four apiece from Florida, Ohio and Texas, three from Kansas and Washington, D.C., one apiece from six different states.

Compare that to Mason’s and Mangino’s final rosters, and remember many Kansas natives were walk-ons.

Mason listed 99 players on his 1996 roster: Kansas 21, Missouri 14, California and Ohio nine, Florida and Texas eight, Michigan seven, Illinois four, Colorado and Pennsylvania three apiece were the most common home states.

Mangino had 102 names on his 2009 roster, including 33 from Texas, Kansas 24, Oklahoma 11, Missouri nine, Florida four, California, Illinois and Ohio three apiece.

Not counting the six transfers from Division I schools, Weis is bringing in 20 new players in 2012, and Texas leads the way with six.

So far, the new staff has not brought in any players from Oklahoma, a fertile recruiting state for Mangino, but not for Mason.

On the surface, the fact that just four of the 34 players listed by Rivals as having received offers from Kansas come from the state of Texas seems like a cause for concern, but without football staffs showing their cards in recruiting, it’s tough to read too much into that.

Sometimes coaches like to wait until the end to make offers so those recruits can’t use that leverage with schools closer to home, trying to draw offers.

Weis’ name is a national recruiting plus, but one that could be nullified if KU doesn’t maintain a strong pipeline to Texas, where Big 12 exposure helps every conference member.


Randy Bombardier 1 year, 10 months ago

I don't know about state to state so much. This is of course a very general article. It seems to me that just like in college it is about school to school or coach to coach. Recently there was an article, ESPN I think, that talked about a particular high school turning out NFL talent. We don't often think about high schools turning out NFL players, but that is a good way to look at it.

We need to develop relationships with great high school coaches (while also evaluating them for coaching capabilities at the D-1 level), ask them for leads of under-rated players, have camps with them and some of their best recruits and so forth. It is about building relationships and fortunately Weiss has a pleasant personality for that. His NFL experience is more likely to attract the interest of those coaches. I think this is the main thing: close working relationships with high school and juco coaching staffs. I wonder though if we do not hit Texas as heavy will we see those same relationships slide?

I'd focus on QBs, WRs, DBs, RBs, and all the rest in that order. With those first four groups I would scour the country and even overseas. With the remainder I might take a different approach.


Robert Brock 1 year, 10 months ago

KU has gone to Texas for the treasure trove of two-star players that the state makes available. The Hawks have learned how to beat Louisiana Tech and Navy for some of them.

I hope that Weis will not bother with Texas unless he intends to succeed in beating UT, OU, OSU, TCU, Baylor, or Texas Tech for a few players.


Robert Brown 1 year, 10 months ago

I think one gauge of whether or not we are being successful recruiting is by comparing the other schools who had interest in a particular athlete. If you look at KU's roster, you'll see alot of MAC, Conference-USA and Mountain West schools on the short list for recruits.

We will know recruiting is successful when, instead of picking KU over Tulsa or Colorado State, recruits are picking KU over Missouri, Illinois and Texas Tech, and Arkansas. It really doesn't matter what the state the recruit is from.


JayHok 1 year, 10 months ago

Alden taking one more shot at the big 12. We already knew Beebe sucked Alden, but golly, I wonder if Alden and Mizzou putting out national headlines a couple years ago might have had anything to do with the big 12 conference feeling a little insecure and 'in the moment' as he says with Nebraska and Colorado suddenly deciding to depart while Mizzou continued to put out more headlines about going to the Big 10. Amazing the stupidity. Amazing the SEC doesn't have more control of Alden's vocal chords already. Wow. Alden's quote below. Wow.

"“These [SEC] schools, they don’t talk about just living in the moment; they talk about what’s good for the league a decade from now, 20 years from now, 30 years from now,” Alden said, shortly after his meeting with the other SEC athletic directors ended Tuesday. “I’m not used to that [with big 12 schools].”

Instead, Alden said, he’s used to attending these meetings [in the big 12] and watching everyone be in reactive mode instead of proactive mode [as it is in the SEC meetings]."


JayHok 1 year, 10 months ago

One more thing. Something Kansas basketball, Kentucky basketball and North Carolina basketball all have in common. They don't worry about other teams obsessively which is what a hated team can do to even the most rational fanbases. Everyone wants to play KU, UK, UNC in basketball to gain the all important exposure and a chance for a huge upset. These healthy basketball fanbases focus on getting better. Their fans focus on getting better. Complete respect for an upcoming an opponent.

The talk is about the team. Our team.

Mizzou leaving could be one of the best things to ever happen to the University of Kansas. Quantril's body is buried. Time to focus on our team, our strategy, our players, our coaching staff which I believe has 7 super bowl rings and 2 NCAA championship rings --Campo with Miami and Grunhard with ND. Weis with the Giants. Weis with the Patriots 3 times. Campo with the Cowboys 3 times.


april28 1 year, 10 months ago

More fun facts.....

NFL Players by State:

  1. California
  2. Texas
  3. Florida
  4. Ohio

State Populations:

  1. California - 37.2million
  2. Texas - 25.1 million
  3. New York - 19.4 million
  4. Florida - 19.0 million
  5. Illinois - 12.8 million
  6. Penn. - 12.7 million
  7. Ohio - 11.5 million

So.....New York is dominated by NYC which tends to nullify it as fertile recruiting ground. Philadelphia and Chicago have similar, but less dramatic impacts on their states as football hotbeds.

In short, the states with the most people - and some football culture - create the most players. However, "all wells can run dry", and the earlier comments of overrating kids just because they are from one of the top four "football" states seems to be rampant.

Bottom line: CW and KU will always have an uphill battle in recruiting until we are consistently good, consistently well-coached and develop a reputation in some key recruiting area as a good place to go play ball. And will still be tough. This isn't a job for wimps. KSU hired the perfect guy. Hopefully, so have we.


JayHok 1 year, 10 months ago

Last I checked there were 50 states in the US. For two years Kansas fans have been brainwashed into believing without talent from Texas, Kansas football will look terrible on the field. This article is ironic especially considering Gill's connections in Texas. I must have been watching the wrong team when a roster loaded with Texas talent---the U of K--- would get beat 50-9 on a regular basis the last two seasons.


april28 1 year, 10 months ago

Agreed that Mason had a bigger job to do - far worse facilities and a mess of a program.

Keegan's concern on Texas seems misplaced: 5 California, 5 Missouri, 4 Florida, 4 Ohio and 4 Texas. CA, FL, OH and TX are the four most heavily recruited states in the country and CW seems to be recruiting all of them about equally. For KU, Missouri is a natural recruiting ground so Weis's approach seems to be simply to go where the players are. As mentioned by an earlier poster, in-state kids will be asked to walk-on unless they are big-time recruits.

What bothers me a little is that the Purple Plague seems to offer just about everyone that we do. I think that this is how they keep their recruiting budget under control. The AD said: just find out who KU offers and then offer them, too. Saves time on recruiting visits and money on the Greyhound tickets to go visit kids.

With Missouri gone, I am quickly starting to hate the Plague even more......


KGphoto 1 year, 10 months ago

Here's a nice piece by Bedore... in 1988.,6629214

I think Mason had a steeper hill to climb than Weis does today. Those Valesente years were rough man. The guy dug a complete void of talent in just two years.

Lots of people say Turner's teams were the worst in KU history, but I don't think they were around in '86-'87. We were outscored 398-133 (3-1) against a much softer schedule in '87, compared to 525-268 (2-1) last year, against a murderer's row of Big 12 bowl teams. I couldn't name you one player from '87, but Weis is inheriting some legitimate talent at a few key positions.

By the way, it took Mason 4 years to post a winning season. He went 8-24 his first 3 years. 1-10 in '88. Just sayin'.


Pork_Ribs 1 year, 10 months ago

I don't care where you get them. I am simply sick of being the laughing stock of college football. No matter how big of homers we all are, it doesn't change the fact that our football program is a joke and will continue to be unless we win. I know to talk football in May means talking about this stuff but I'm sick of talk. All I ask is that we have more wins than losses....consistently.


CWGOKU 1 year, 10 months ago

What we get out of Texas is left overs


Andy Tweedy 1 year, 10 months ago

This could just as easily be an article about basketball. We were awfully successful with Coach Williams' plan to recruit pretty much everywhere except places not named California, but then Coach Self had this whacky idea to recruit more nationally. I think we'll be fine!


jhox 1 year, 10 months ago

You can't limit yourself to mostly Texas recruits, but it would be foolish to overlook that state. Texas is pretty well picked over by top programs and KU often gets the state's marginal high D1 players. We can't just assume because they're from Texas they are better. Instead we need to do a better job of weeding out the marginal players and finding those gems who have been overlooked. Think of all the D2 guys who play in the NFL. Look at all of the NFL guys who came out of Pitt State and NW Missouri over the years. We cant let local and regional guys like those drop to the D2 schools. They are out there but they need to be found.

You cant always trust what the recruiting services have to say about a kid. Those services are often manned by journalist types, not guys who actually played or coached the game, yet coaches let those guys tell them who to look at. Often their recommendations are based on a 3 minute highlight tape. Most players could put together 3 minutes of highlights, even if they stink most of the time. There are no shortcuts in recruiting if you are a KU. You have to scout more than the other guys.

We need to work hard to find guys who are high D1 talents but who have been overlooked. When you are where KU is at in the food chain, you have to work a little harder and a lot smarter than everyone else.


Martin Rosenblum 1 year, 10 months ago

Going to bowl games does a lot for recruiting. Let's show we can be a team above 500 and quailify for a bowl game and it will be easier to go to places where the better recruits tend to come from. Weis's name and resume has gotten him a good crop this year. But, success/wins will be the "walk the walk" factor for next year's class of newbies.


JHWKDW 1 year, 10 months ago

Well it sounds like he has the right Idea getting players from everywhere not just Texas!Hey if this conference implodes, it is good to recruit from other places!You know the place they ought to try and recruit is that American Samoa Island did anyone see that 60 Minutes show about the guys there?Alot of NFL guys came from that Island!The U.S.C. and Steeler guy came from there Polamalu!Hey the KU baseball coach Price guy gets guys from Hawaii!Be great if we could get guys from there!

Lets give Weis a shot!I think the Notre Dame stint he had was a fluke!I think he can do well!Well good luck to you Weis!


rastameta 1 year, 10 months ago

Mason put more guys in the NFL than Mangino. Mason and his staff were much better recruiters.


GregStang 1 year, 10 months ago

Mangino vs. Mason: Aloha Bowl vs. Orange Bowl. I could be wrong on that Aloha Bowl, I wasn't a KU fan in '96, before I was a KU fan/student/alum. I'm not knocking the "national" approach, but Todd Reesing is from Texas.


ukanjhox 1 year, 10 months ago

People get hung up on "oh he's from Texas, he must be good." I'll take Weis' evaluation of talent over the Texas allure any day.


manginorh00lz 1 year, 10 months ago

Texas recruiting is overrated. Weis is exactly what we needed.


ahpersecoachingexperience 1 year, 10 months ago

For the first time ever TK is sooooooooo right. Texas is the place to be for amazing high school athletes. All you have to do is look at the Big 12 Texas school and see how they finished last year. Watching Baylor hang the Alamo Bowl banner is going to bring a tear to my eye. And aTm not becoming bowl eligible until their second to last game against a Turner Gill coached KU team, TT being the other non bowl eligable Big 12 team other than us, UT being so irrelevant that I can't even remember what they played in, heck even throw in OU's Texas sized amount of players from texas (see what I did there) had to be because of the few out of state recruits on their team, not the Texas kids fault!

I'm not saying there aren't good kids in Texas. I am saying that some get elevated just because they played high school ball in Texas.


Commenting has been disabled for this item.