Advertisement

Advertisement

Originally published November 13, 2012 at 03:02p.m., updated November 13, 2012 at 11:47p.m.

Weis hopes packed house will honor KU football seniors Saturday night

Kansas University football coach Charlie Weis holds a news conference at KU on Wednesday, August 1, 2012, the day before the Jayhawks’ fall camp starts. Weis spoke about the team’s depth chart and his eagerness for the season to start, saying, “I’m more motivated than I’ve ever been.”

Kansas University football coach Charlie Weis holds a news conference at KU on Wednesday, August 1, 2012, the day before the Jayhawks’ fall camp starts. Weis spoke about the team’s depth chart and his eagerness for the season to start, saying, “I’m more motivated than I’ve ever been.”

Advertisement

Saturday is Senior Night for Kansas University’s football team.

But as far as KU coach Charlie Weis is concerned, that’s not enough.

For nearly one third of his 32-minute meeting with the media on Tuesday Weis talked passionately about his first senior class at Kansas and spoke of putting a different emphasis on his business-as-usual approach.

“To be honest with you, it’s not about the program this week,” Weis said. “It’s about the seniors this week. I selfishly take the team out of this one this week. Obviously, every win is gonna matter to the program, but I’m dead serious when I say I wanna win this game very, very badly this week, but not because of me and not because of the program. I wanna win it for those kids.”

As far as Weis is concerned, KU’s 23 seniors deserve at least that much. From the guys who played for three head coaches during their four or five seasons at KU to those who just arrived, Weis said watching the seniors leave Memorial Stadium with a smile Saturday would be one of the most important moments of his first season at Kansas. After all, these were the players who welcomed Weis into the program last December, guys who bought in without complaining, showed the younger players what it meant to handle themselves with class and turned out week after week, loss after loss, ready to put everything behind them and try to get the next one.

“These are my guys,” Weis said. “And I’ll be there for ’em forever — whatever they need from me. Within reason. I don’t need to have recruited them and have coached them to respect them.”

Respect is a serious deal for Weis. And his actions this week toward a senior class that has won just six times in the past 41 games illustrate that his feelings about this group go beyond a few words in front of the cameras and recorders at a news conference.

Although several members of the media requested interviews with other players and a few coaches this week, only seniors will be made available. Weis even led off Tuesday’s media session by making a plea — his third of the week already — for KU students and fans to fill Memorial Stadium when the Jayhawks play host to Iowa State at 6 p.m. Saturday.

“I see our student newspaper’s well represented,” said Weis, surveying the reporters in the room. “I would expect our student newspaper would be encouraging our students to show up in force Saturday night. It’s supposed to be a beautiful night. Six o’clock’s too early to go out. Gets over about 9:30. You know, it’s just about right. We have over 30,000 people at this school, and I think it would be really good if a whole bunch of ’em came and spent the evening with us.”

There’s more to life than winning or losing college football games, and Weis knows that as well as anyone. But he has the benefit of experience on his side. For a bunch of young players with varying futures, Weis said it was his sincere hope that they understood that as well.

“They’ve certainly had more than their share of negative things that have happened,” he said. “But I think if they can walk out with their heads held high, (they’ll) be a much better down the road. ... I think they’re leaving here well-rounded young men. And when you go to school, the biggest thing that happens is you grow up. And growing up with just good things happening doesn’t really prepare you for life.”

With two games left on the schedule, Weis hopes that this group has few memorable headlines to add to its scrapbook.

“First of all, their experience is not over,” Weis said. “So I would like them to walk out of here with a good taste in their mouths. If all of a sudden on Saturday night all those 900-game losing streaks and all that other stuff (is gone) and you’re partying on the field after the game, that’s what they’re gonna remember. You don’t focus on bad things. You remember the good things. And there’s still a couple of opportunities for some good memories to be created.”

As for the players for whom Weis is doing all this, most said they were moved but not surprised.

“It just shows what type of guy he is,” senior receiver Daymond Patterson said. “For him to put this big emphasis on the seniors is a big thing, and it shows us that he does care.”

Added quarterback Dayne Crist: “That’s what he’s about; he’s about his players. Always has been and always will be.”

Comments

focojayhawk 2 years, 1 month ago

I'll be there, driving in from Colorado. Been looking foward to this for a while!

shelleysue 2 years, 1 month ago

We'll be there and on our feet the whole game. Wouldn't miss it. THANK YOU SENIORS!!

David Meredith 2 years, 1 month ago

I really hope they get the win Saturday night. I am sure these guys had big dreams 4 years ago when they chose KU, and I hope at the very least they can have a good send off in their final home game.

Tony Bandle 2 years, 1 month ago

Luckily, the basketball team is not playing Saturday night or else those 30,000 people would be glued to their TV sets!!

SO...NO EXCUSES!!!

Chad Sandwell 2 years, 1 month ago

Making the drive from South Dakota. Will be there with bells on!

Steve Reigle 2 years, 1 month ago

Can't be there physically but will be there in spirit and will watch on TV. Thanks to our Seniors as well as to the entire team and coaching staff. When you look at where we started and where we're at today, despite the W-L numbers, it's still pretty amazing. Lot of hard work has paid off.

hawkdds 2 years, 1 month ago

I'll be screaming at the TV in support, thanks seniors and the entire coaching staff, I know better times lie ahead.RCJH

Ross Cargo 2 years, 1 month ago

If I didn't have 24 kids running in a Regional Cross Country meet in New Mexico, I'd go. This team has battled as hard as they could. I truly hope they can get a win.

Micky Baker 2 years, 1 month ago

The KU Seniors deserve every single student to be there on Saturday and 110 decibels every time Iowa State's offense goes up to the line. Make it loud and if KU's defense plays like they have at home this season, they can win this game by 20 or 30. It would be a big send off for the Seniors that they deserve and it will be one to build on with 2 weeks to prepare for West Virginia. Sure, they have a good offense, but so has almost every other team we've played this year. KU can win the last two, but of course, the one at West Virginia will be more difficult. Our guys are running to the ball and making tackles so much better than a year ago.

flyingfinn 2 years, 1 month ago

Good luck to the seniors and the entire football team, wish we could be there. The seniors have been through a lot and despite the record this team has shown character, determination and improvement. I truly expect a victory this Saturday. Good luck Hawks!!!!!

bdmeek13 2 years, 1 month ago

This group of seniors is the epitome of perseverance. I think we win and win big on Saturday - and they deserve it. Set it off, Jayhawks! Rock Chalk!

Micky Baker 2 years, 1 month ago

It would say a lot about the fan's commitment to building a football program at KU if Memorial Stadium is sold out on Saturday. If the fans don't commit, then they don't have a right to be angry when the team loses close games. If the fans do commit, then KU will win the close games at home most of the time, and will eventually start winning on the road too.

Doug Roberts 2 years, 1 month ago

I'll be there. Look forward to storming the field after the game...

JakeBarnes 2 years, 1 month ago

Weis is not only a good coach he's a good guy.

vd 2 years, 1 month ago

As far as Weis is concerned, KU’s 23 seniors deserve at least that much. From the guys who played for three head coaches during their four or five seasons at KU to those who just arrived, Weis said watching the seniors leave Memorial Stadium with a smile Saturday would be one of the most important moments of his first season at Kansas.


Yes, a victory would be an important moment. He would then equal the victory total of the coach he replaced. Even with a close loss, the fans would see great improvement from the previous year. A 1-11 vs. 2-10 season is an improvement in the KU FB fan's eyes.

squawkhawk 2 years, 1 month ago

This senior class has won only 2 of 34 (5%) conference games while losing 32 of 34 (94%) conference games (2009 - 2012). What a disappointment they must feel.

Micky Baker 2 years, 1 month ago

Good to see the positive comments. We need the fans to support this program's turn around.

Jack Jones 2 years, 1 month ago

Agreed. Just imagine the progression our team has made this season. Who could have thought just how tough and how talented these players have been - enduring all the negative criticism early on following those first few games, only to fight back and play beyond what many of us might have expected. The way they were able to demonstrate that they could play with anybody - and especially so when we consider just how tough a conference the Big 12 continues to be. The Texas, the Oklahoma State and the Texas Tech games are proof enough of the fact that yes, you are big, you are strong and you have talent to varying degrees; but it is that intangible, hard to quantify, something inside of you, that allows you to achieve beyond what even you might expect; that I believe this group of young men, led by the Seniors have given to us this year. Win or lose they have earned our respect and, come Saturday hopefully a full stadium of support.

squawkhawk 2 years, 1 month ago

Just heard that Weis was giving away tickets to students for the ISU game. If true, this is simply pathetic.

John Myers 2 years, 1 month ago

No, unfortunately, it's a good number of our students who are pathetic. I think it's a class move on his part.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.