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Saturday, December 7, 2013

Charlie Weis confirms hire of Rice’s John Reagan as KU football offensive coordinator

Clint Bowen also given defensive coordinator title

Kansas offensive line coach John Reagan looks to high five lineman Adrian Mayes following a Jake Sharp touchdown during the second half against the Buffaloes, Saturday, Oct. 20, 2007 at Folsom Field in Boulder.

Kansas offensive line coach John Reagan looks to high five lineman Adrian Mayes following a Jake Sharp touchdown during the second half against the Buffaloes, Saturday, Oct. 20, 2007 at Folsom Field in Boulder.

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Rice football’s John Reagan is Kansas University’s new offensive-line coach and offensive coordinator, KU head coach Charlie Weis announced Saturday. The Journal-World first reported Reagan’s hiring on Nov. 27.

Weis, in a press release, also gave KU linebackers coach Clint Bowen the title of defensive coordinator, a role Bowen performed in place of Dave Campo for much of the 2013 season.

Reagan worked as an assistant at KU under former Kansas coach Mark Mangino from 2005-09 and is coming off his third season as offensive coordinator at Rice, which won the Conference USA championship Saturday with a 41-24 victory over Marshall. He will replace Tim Grunhard, who stepped down as KU’s O-line coach on Dec. 1.

“When Tim told me his thoughts, I started searching for a replacement with the hopes of finding someone with Kansas ties capable of coordinating an offense,” Weis said in the press release. “My search brought me to John Reagan. John not only coached at KU, but his kids still reside in Lawrence. He has a great reputation as an offensive line coach, but also has received accolades for coordinating the offense at Rice.

“John immediately takes over for Tim and will hit the recruiting trail for offensive linemen. He will serve as both the offensive coordinator and the offensive line coach. I would like to welcome John Reagan back to the Jayhawk family.”

According to a source, Reagan will be bringing his offense to Lawrence and will be free to run a similar style of offense that he ran both at Kansas, as an offensive- line coach, and at Rice as the offensive coordinator.

Bringing in Reagan to run the offense will free up Weis to focus entirely on running the program as head coach, from overseeing recruiting and managing assistants to instilling discipline and motivating players on the field and in the classroom.

Reagan’s time in Houston has been wildly productive. In 2012, the Owls produced the second-most productive offensive season in school history, piling up 5,556 yards, 414 points and 306 first downs on their way to winning the last five games and capturing the Armed Forces Bowl Championship. The Owls also set a school record and led the nation by averaging 33:59 in time of possession.

Prior to Saturday’s victory over Marshall, Rice (10-3) ranked 55th in the NCAA in total offense with more than 5,000 yards and nearly 400 points. That number included an average of 240 yards on the ground, good for 17th in the country. Rice averaged 31.4 points per game this season, more than double KU’s average of 15.3 points per game.

Before joining the Jayhawks and Owls, Reagan, a Syracuse graduate, coached at Air Force and Temple. He has long been considered one of the up-and-coming offensive minds in football and his familiarity with the Big 12 and recruiting connections in Texas could provide a huge lift for a KU offense that has struggled during the past two seasons.

Players who benefited from Reagan’s tutelage at KU include 2007 All-America lineman Anthony Collins, a finalist for the Outland Trophy and a fourth-round draft pick of the Cincinnati Bengals. In addition, former multi-year starters Jeff Spikes and Jeremiah Hatch earned freshman All-America honors in 2008 under Reagan and others earned All-Big 12 honors.

Bowen, a former KU safety who has worked on the staff of three head coaches at Kansas, functioned as the Jayhawks’ DC during much of the 2013 season but never officially received the title from Campo.

Bowen will continue to coach KU’s linebackers and both his role and Campo’s role as KU’s defensive backs coach will remain similar to what they were during 2013.

“I like the way the defensive staff transitioned this past season from Dave to Clint,” Weis said. “Therefore, Clint will now assume the title of defensive coordinator with Dave continuing to oversee the defense as the assistant head coach.”

Comments

Brett McCabe 11 months, 3 weeks ago

This is good news for the program. Reagan should help us in Texas and he literally cannot do worse with the offense than what we've had the past four years. It's good to have him now, so that he can start recruiting immediately. My guess is that his first call will be to Bragg.

Recruiting right now needs a major influx of 3-star talent, including some solid JUCO additions. That's how we get better. Without better players we will not get over the hump. Let's get to work coaches!

Jack Joiner 11 months, 3 weeks ago

Progress! We saw our defense improve this year. Even with a bad offense we were more competitive. I believe the offense will be much better now that Charlie has turned it over to Reagan. Looking forward to next season. RCJH!

John Penka 11 months, 3 weeks ago

I would love to see Mac Brown get fired at Texas. Then I would love to see Weis go and hire his WR's coach/recruiting coordinator Darrell Wyatt, who also worked at KU with Mangino! This would really help us recruit in Texas and he was successful as a coach with the Kerry Meier and Dezmon Briscoe. FIRE MAC BROWN!!

W Keith Swinehart II 11 months, 3 weeks ago

Excellent steps in rebuilding a program; bringing in experience, KU blood, promoting within. We've shown improvement and willingness to change things. I remain very optimistic for the next 5 years. Big day!

Jim Jackson 11 months, 3 weeks ago

I like what Weis is doing here; bringing in and promoting guys who were instrumental in our success under Mangina.

Need to keep recruiting good juco players as well to raise the level of competition.

Mark Lindrud 11 months, 2 weeks ago

At least Weis is being proactive in improving the team. Recruiting really needs to bring in talent on offense now. Going to make this next season interesting. I'm curious which QB will be the best fit for the offense. I hope it's an open competition.

Aaron Paisley 11 months, 2 weeks ago

Unless Reagan brings the triple option with him, KU's offense is still going to be a disaster without WR's who can catch and KU needs more than just Harwell to step up next year. Coleman started showing flashes of being good towards the end of the season and Mundine has decent so hopefully there is some sort of a foundation to build on for whoever the QB is next year.

Mark Lindrud 11 months, 2 weeks ago

The line needs to prove too. Maybe Harrwell can help guys improve with his leadership.

Dirk Medema 11 months, 2 weeks ago

We will be replacing 60% of the OL, and we are in the hunt for several highly regarded JC OT's, so all kinds of things can change.

It might not be a coincidence that Coleman and other WR's started improving later in the year when Weis started supplementing Ianello's coaching. It's also interesting that it says he will now be coordinating the recruiting.

It's probably tough for him to give up what he has been successful doing in the past OC, but I'm excited about his new focus. It seems to fit him well, be a need in the program (discipline), and Reagan will do well also. But who'll be the next WR assistant?

Ashwin Rao 11 months, 2 weeks ago

Not very impressed with Mundine. He is athletic, but I don't believe he is a D1 level receiver. I hope we get someone that will relegate him to a backup role.

Alex Berger 11 months, 2 weeks ago

Those guys might already be on the roster.

David Kemp 11 months, 2 weeks ago

Agree fully, guy has stone hands and unfortunately he is usually the only guy who gets open, thus we need a TE with soft hands.

Jim Jackson 11 months, 2 weeks ago

Mark Thomas and Ismael Hyman are RS right now; hopefully they make an impact. Both were recruited by some reputable programs so there is some hope.

That being said, we do need some more help so hopefully we can get a couple juco receivers to commit.

Chris Gilbertson 11 months, 2 weeks ago

With what Reagan did at Rice on offense the past few years if Reagan can do something with the O-Line, and with the running backs KU has now and also the ones coming in, I'm kind of excited to see what KU can do next year. I won't predict any wins or get my hopes up just yet, but after the first couple of games things may be looking a whole lot better in Lawrence.

Doug Cramer 11 months, 2 weeks ago

Funny how everyone wants to bring all of Mangino's staff back. Warriner, Wyatt, Reagan, Beaty. hmmm...maybe we made a mistake 4 years ago...

Dirk Medema 11 months, 2 weeks ago

Warriner is OC at tOSU. He's not coming back

The others are quality coaches. Maybe the problem 4+ yrs ago wasn't with the assistants.

Ashwin Rao 11 months, 2 weeks ago

I completely agree, but we didn't do anything to retain the assistance after getting firing Mangs.

Jim Jackson 11 months, 2 weeks ago

There was a lot of turnover on Mangino's staff because he did not address his assistants as grown men. Good friend of mine was video coordinator back in '07. However, there were some very talented assistants on the staff.

Alex Berger 11 months, 2 weeks ago

Anyone feel better about that loss to Rice now that they are C-USA champs?

Bryan Mohr 11 months, 2 weeks ago

No, not really... the Big-12 refuses to expand so that each school can be even wealthier by some millions. There's all this hype and importance placed on each conference and school squeezing every cent out of college sports. With all that Big-12(10) money, KU couldn't beat a relatively low budget school like Rice? Sure, upsets from low budget schools will always occur, but 2 years in a row is not a fluke upset. Yes, Rice is a good - not great - team, but I don't feel better about the loss because a big part of it was being out coached by a Mangino disciple being paid chump-change compared to KU's staff. I do feel better that Weis is smart enough to scab a coach that he couldn't beat. I feel there is hope with Reagan now on board, and give credit to Weis for making a good decision.

Erich Hartmann 11 months, 2 weeks ago

Bryan, I disagree with your sentence about how with our "millions" we couldnt beat a school like Rice. We are all frustrated, you and me. But we dont buy or pay players, there is no free agency. We dont just go out and "acquire" Alex Smith or Wes Welker. Ignoring what state the program fell to will not help your understanding of how long it takes to fix each different problem. Each problem area has a different timeline. We dont have the offense talent (Oline and WRs) to actually EXECUTE anybody's gameplan, right? Talent and experience dont happen overnight, or even over a few games. For example, Turzilli proved beyond a shadow of a doubt, that after 2yrs, he aint got it. You will be pleased to see Harwell on the other side of the field from Pierson. Maybe Coleman improves, he showed flashes. And its make or break for Mundine. Cox + Bourbon is a fine duo. Oline has some experience and about 5 frosh you never saw on the field, and we recruited about 3 more...so we have new bodies to plug in. Stay the course.

Im excited to see what Reagan can do with the Oline and the Offense as a whole...Yes, call me a Reaganite!

Brett McCabe 11 months, 2 weeks ago

If anyone ever has any doubt about the importance of recruiting, let me share a little information. I did some research on the Big 12 beginning with the 2005 season. Using 4-year recruiting windows for each season, I found the following:

OU was number 2 in recruiting and number 1 in on-field results. Texas was number 1 in recruiting and number 2 in on-field results. OSU was number 3 in recruiting and number 4 in on-field results. TTU was number 4 in recruiting and number 3 in on-field results.

Are you noticing a trend?

Without getting in too much detail, the bottom line is simple: you don't build a good program by "out-developing" the your opponents. You win by attracting better athletes at the beginning.

We need to recruit. We need a class that is, at worst, ranked in the top-6 of the conference. There was never a more important recruiting period than this one.

Jason Keller 11 months, 2 weeks ago

Wait, so you're telling me that the team with the best players usually wins?

Brett McCabe 11 months, 2 weeks ago

Actually, I'm saying that our recruiting needs to improve. Seemed kind of clear.

Erich Hartmann 11 months, 2 weeks ago

But arent we following the KState model of getting 3stars (mostly) and jucos, and coaching them up?

Lonnie Ross Dillon 11 months, 2 weeks ago

I really confused about Dave Campo's roll with the team. I thought he was the DC but this article (and others through the last half of the year) would indicate Bowen is.

Matt Tait 11 months, 2 weeks ago

They changed roles. Bowen is now officially the DC and spent most of this season working as such without the title.

It wasn't a knock on Campo, more because of Bowen's role as linebackers coach and his experience working against Big-12-type offenses.

The confusion is done now, though. Bowen's the DC. Campo's the DBs coach and assistant head coach for defense. And they work closely together to put KU's defense in the best possible position.

Because the title never changed hands, it was tough to write all season. Won't be an issue any longer.

Charles Bell 11 months, 2 weeks ago

These post are simply hilarious! Mock my words, KU football fans are being pimped by Zenger and Weiss! I cant' wait for next year to illustrate my point. Iowa State had a young team and expect to be better next year after a down year. Can anyone please tell me whom we will defeat and why? Freakin LOL!!!

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