Monday, September 2, 2013

KU bye gives Weis extra chance to scout first foe

Kansas head coach Charlie Weis smiles as he watches his offensive linemen move a sled during football practice on Tuesday, Aug. 20, 2013.

Kansas head coach Charlie Weis smiles as he watches his offensive linemen move a sled during football practice on Tuesday, Aug. 20, 2013.


Saturday afternoon, as Kansas University football coach Charlie Weis sat restlessly and watched the rest of the college football world open its season a week earlier than the Jayhawks, he had one simple goal.

“I was focused on trying to get at least a little bit of TV viewing on as many different teams that we’re gonna play this year as I possibly could,” KU’s second-year coach said in Monday morning’s Big 12 coaches teleconference.

With most of KU’s Big 12 Conference foes, the games were readily available on cable television. But there was one opponent — South Dakota — that Weis had to go the extra mile to watch live. The Coyotes will come to Memorial Stadium at 6 p.m. Saturday for KU’s season opener. And thanks to the Internet, Weis was able to see USD’s entire 10-7 victory over UC-Davis.

“I ordered it online from Coyote Network, trust me,” Weis said of the game he paid $10 to watch online. “I sat there with my TV on, I had my computer on and I watched that whole game, as well.”

In some ways, seeing fresh film on an opponent he and his staff had scouted throughout the offseason gave Weis an extra shot of adrenaline.

“With the way television and technology is today, you pretty much have a chance of watching any and every game you want to,” Weis said. “The question is, how much are you really getting from watching TV copy? You can’t see everything that’s happening. You might see the front and not see the coverage. You might see the interior offensive line and not see the wide receivers. When you’re watching it, you can’t pick everything up. But I think any time you’re watching a game there’s gonna be something that happens or something that’s said that you’re gonna pay attention to that you take either physical notes or mental notes of to get you ready to play.”

Weis did not divulge the details of his notes, but did say that he expected the outcome gave USD an extra dose of confidence.

“They’re coming off a similar season to us,” Weis said of the Coyotes, who finished 1-10 in 2012. “And having early success in their opener gives them a little bit of a jump-start on us. It’s always a concern when a team’s already got a game to iron out some kinks. The second game’s usually gonna be better than the first one.”

Upsets no surprise

Several FCS teams pulled off Week 1 upsets last weekend, with two of them taking place in the Big 12, as Northern Iowa knocked off Iowa State and North Dakota State upended Kansas State.

Although the victories by the underdogs grabbed Weis’ attention, he said he was not shocked by the outcomes.

“I think too many times people underestimate preparation,” Weis said. “Watching those teams win was not a big surprise. There’s a lot of good football coaches out there and there’s a lot of good football players. And time is a great equalizer. Any time you have that much time to prepare for an opponent, I think you’d better be ready because anyone can win in a game like that.”

That was the message Weis and his coaching staff shared with the players on Sunday as they began game-week preparations for South Dakota.

“Oh, we had a team meeting (Sunday) and that was the first rattle out of my mouth,” Weis said. “‘Did you watch these games fellas? You see what’s going on out there? This is what happens. If you think you’re just going to show up and just roll over people, it just doesn’t work that way.’ Because we didn’t play, it was a great teaching tool.”

Rice looked nice

Outside of Owls fans, Weis may have been one of the only people in the country more interested in how KU’s Week 2 opponent Rice looked than the team it played in Saturday’s opener.

“Everyone wanted to talk about the (Texas A&M;) quarterback (Johnny Manziel) and what’s gonna happen there and I just was interested in watching Rice,” Weis said. “I thought, offensively, they were pretty impressive. They took it to ‘em really wire to wire.”

USD kicker honored

South Dakota freshman Miles Bergner was named the Missouri Valley Football Conference special teams player of the week for his role in the Coyotes’ season-opening victory. Bergner made a 39-yard field goal that broke a 7-all tie with 7:31 left in the game and also placed all five of his punts inside the UC-Davis 25-yard line. The Longmont, Colo., native also averaged 62 yards on three kickoffs and had one touchback and one special teams tackle.


mahkmood 7 years, 2 months ago

I find this article a bit boring, so I'm going to talk B12 expansion. I'd like to see Houston and Cincinnati added.

This brings back conf champ game. I believe UH and Cinci would become marquee match-ups if rolled into the B12 (the TV money will come). Picks up Ohio market, nearer rival for WVU, large corporate interests from massive and growing Houston population. Cinci and Houston are both Pro Sports markets after all. Sure, UT won't want it, but I like the idea of it, and think it would be great for the B12 in the long-term.

Jim Jackson 7 years, 2 months ago

Those schools have no chance. Neither are AAU accredited. BYU is the one I would hope for

Brad Farha 7 years, 1 month ago

No way, no more Texas schools. This is in no way a slam on the state of Texas, but we've already got that TV market. Getting another school there adds nothing to the pie, and divides it further.

Bryce Landon 7 years, 2 months ago

Weis should be very concerned with Rice given that they are coming off a bowl season and beat us last season and that we have to go to their house to play against them.

Chris1955 7 years, 2 months ago

I live in Houston. U of H? Very few in Houston watch Cougar football. The student attendance at football games is even worse than at KU. It's giant commuter school.

KU is gone from the Big 12-2 after the current agreement is over. B1G TEN is in our future.

Jonathan Allison 7 years, 2 months ago

“I ordered it online from Coyote Network, trust me,” - Charlie Weis

Don't worry coach, nobody would suspect that you pirated that game.

But if Mike Leach were our coach...

kellerman411 7 years, 2 months ago

KU doesn't allow a touchdown on Saturday. I predict the Coyotes will make 2 field goals but will not score a touchdown. For once, our athleticism on the perimeter is superior compared to an FCS opponent. Feels nice, doesn't it?

I don't think our offense has a huge day but I think they prove that they can at least execute. Jake goes 11-19 for 200 yards and we add another 150 on the ground.

Final Score: 35-6 KU and the old ball coach is smiling in the post-game press conference

Andy Tweedy 7 years, 1 month ago

We better not give up more than 6 points to a team that could only score 10 against UC Davis! As for your prediction, I think we get way more than 150 on the ground; otherwise, I'd be okay with that.

shelleysue 7 years, 1 month ago

I hope to see a score bigger than that.

Robert Brown 7 years, 2 months ago

Not sure why the Big 12 would expand to another Texas school. Living in Houston, I can tell you that UH is at best the third most popular team in the city. It is actually very good academically. I still do not believe the Big 12 should have selected TCU.

Rice will be a tough opponent. They have a bye week this week so the coach can scout us.

Finally, while North Dakota State (the team that beat KSU) is the Alabama of the FCS division, South Dakota is the KU of the FCS division. I wouldn't get too excited about a decisive victory or trash talk the KSU loss.

Bryce Landon 7 years, 1 month ago

Who would you rather have in the Big 12 other than the Frogs?

Robert Brown 7 years, 1 month ago

We could have selected Louisville and then West Virginia. Right now, West Virginia is on an island. TCU does not bring anything to the table. The Big 12 already had a firm footing in DFW. While all other conferences during realignment expanded their geographic footprint, the Big 12 by picking TCU did not do that. While the pickings were slim, I think adding private school in Texas that has little broad based support was a mistake.

Steve Reigle 7 years, 1 month ago

Louisville is the one I originally hoped we'd get into the BigXII. A bit late now, though.

Robert Brown 7 years, 1 month ago

They certainly could have been taken at the time we picked TCU. It is easy to look back. At the time, MU was still in the conference and I think most thought they would stay. If MU has stayed and we picked Louisville over TCU, we would at least have a conference that is somewhat contiguous. Right now, WV is on an island with little or not prospects to be 'rescued'.

Brad Farha 7 years, 1 month ago

Agreed. It's too late now, but I wish we'd taken Louisville 1st. Then to finish the 10 get WVU over TCU. Never should have picked up TCU. Not a slam on TCU or the state of Texas, but we already had that TV market.

Robert Brock 7 years, 2 months ago

No mas! No more Texas schools in the Big 12, please!

Brandon Pope 7 years, 2 months ago

I agree with a lot of the other articles floating around out there. I think this needs to be a 30+ pt victory for me to maintain my optimism about this season. I am currently in a "4-8 at the worst and 7-5 at the best" kind of mindset about this team which may be foolish. However, if we go out there and struggle (give up 2-3 TDs or fail or put more than 30 points on the board) I will have to back off a little.

I like this week 1 and 2 combo. Week one we see how we do against a team we should have the talent to dominate. In week two we see how we handle a tough game on the road. If we are 2-0 after Sep 14th we should be in good shape to head into the last game of the season at 5-6 with a bowl bid on the line.

Bret Eckert 7 years, 2 months ago

Hey Charlie: It is not a "Bye Week" until you play a game. Now even the Media believes you

ohjayhawk 7 years, 1 month ago

It absolutely is a bye week. The season has started, other teams played games that day. We didn't. We had a bye. Just like in a tournament where the higher seeds get a bye into later rounds (i.e. the Big 12 Basketball tourneys). The top seeds are given byes even though they haven't played a game in that tournament yet.

Jeff Coffman 7 years, 1 month ago

When the NFL expanded to 31 teams (added back Cleveland) and the first week they didn't have a game, it was referred to as a bye week.

mikehawk 7 years, 1 month ago

Where do you guys get this conference re-alignment stuff? Must be too much talk radio which has time to fill and needs BS to keep listeners. Not a good sign when our first game is 5 days away and the bloggers want to talk re-alignment. May give the Half Time abandonment folks something to talk about at the local bars.

Tony Bandle 7 years, 1 month ago

My optimism for this season is rooted in a huge dose of reality.

1] We stay competitve enough in Memorial Stadium, that 75% + of the crowd is still there at the final gun.

2] We win two of the three non-con games and, hopefully at least, two of the league games.

3] Jake shows enough leadership and football savvy this season to make next year look like our break out year.

4] We kick field goals with some regularity and distance.

5] Win the turnover/takeaway battle [probably a difficult goal].

6] Block tackle and cover better than the last three seasons. [probably not saying much but still need to show significant improvement.].

7] Maybe, just maybe, we shock someone this season. [I would give my left "you know what" if it was Kansas State in Lawrence!!].

8] We see some positive planning movement toward removal of the track.

9] Sellout one game with half the crowd NOT fans of our opponent.

10] End the season feeling good and excited for 2014.

Robert Brown 7 years, 1 month ago

Four would be good and five is a possibility. Unfortunately, with a roster filled with JUCO, we might become bowl eligible next year if a lot of these players pan out, but then the roster turns over and we have to start again. So while 2015 should be better than 2014, I am not sure 2016 will continue the upward progression unless we seriously improve our recruiting.

Brad Farha 7 years, 1 month ago

@Kingfisher -- agreed. Coach has publicly stated that his plan involves using JUCO initially, and then phasing that down over time.

kellerman411 7 years, 1 month ago

KSU would be no shocker. Last weekend was not a fluke associated with say blown coverages or dropped passes, etc. It was domination at the line of scrimmage. KSU and KU will have similar records at the end of this year.

rockchalk_dpu 7 years, 1 month ago

I agree, we should have the horses in the backfield to beat on KState for 4 quarters and wear them down. I watched the end of that game in shock not only because NDSU was able to string together an 18 play 8:30 drive, but moreso because it looked like KState laid down and gave up.

I'm obviously not a KState fan, but respect the fact that they are well coached and exceed expectations most seasons, but that game looked like a totally different team from what Snyder normally fields. The best part in all this was the chatter that started from KState fans about how Snyder should have retired after last season... They built the man a statue, treat him like a god, and they turn on him like he's some hack coach. Gotta love little brother.

Dirk Medema 7 years, 1 month ago

2 season til the second retirement and swirly of the purple kitties. The first retirement came 2 years after the co-championship. It could be an interesting dejavu for such a football school.

Brad Farha 7 years, 1 month ago

My worry is that Snyder will have a season to watch and prepare for KU. He's always pointed to the KSU-KU game as the biggest game on his schedule, and he'll have his guys ready.

texashawk10 7 years, 1 month ago

I would've preferred to see KU play South Dakota this weekend and had the bye next weekend. Get some real game experience so the players can get a better idea of where they're at and the take two weeks to work on stuff before Rice. The biggest improvements usually happen between the first and second games and I think the extra week would've been much more helpful after the first game.

Chris Bailey 7 years, 1 month ago

This game better be on TV! I watched football all weekend. Just finished watching the replay of ksu and ndsu. I'm going nuts. Tired of reading speculation and nothing against kusports they do a great job. I'm just ready to see the real thing! I've heard that unless this sells out it'll be blacked out. I sure hope not!

Xen 7 years, 1 month ago

The game will be on Metro Sports if you get that channel.

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