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Wednesday, September 11, 2013

KU’s Sims eager for shot at Rice after sitting out loss

A field goal from Rice kicker Chris Boswell sails over a pack of lunging Jayhawks to win the game for the Owls 25-24 on Saturday, Sept. 8, 2012 at Memorial Stadium.

A field goal from Rice kicker Chris Boswell sails over a pack of lunging Jayhawks to win the game for the Owls 25-24 on Saturday, Sept. 8, 2012 at Memorial Stadium.

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Last season, when Rice kicker Chris Boswell knocked a 45-yard field goal through the uprights as time expired to give the Owls a one-point victory over Kansas University, the Jayhawks’ best football player changed the channel.

Sidelined while serving the second leg of a three-game suspension for an offseason arrest, then-junior running back James Sims was not at Memorial Stadium on Sept. 8, 2012, when the Owls topped the Jayhawks, 25-24. Being there, and watching his teammates compete without him, was too difficult for Sims, who was given the choice by KU coach Charlie Weis to attend the game in street clothes or watch it on TV at home. He chose the latter. And he chose to watch by himself.

“I couldn’t really come up here and do that,” Sims recalled Wednesday, as the Jayhawks continued preparations for Saturday’s 6:30 p.m. rematch against Rice in Houston. “I already felt bad about the situation that I was in and I felt like it was just best if I sat at home and watched the game. Me not being out there, physically, would’ve hurt me.”

So instead of watching from the stands with the thousands of people who had become used to cheering for him, Sims laid low and watched from his couch in his apartment.

At first, Sims was encouraged. Although he cheered every first down and each defensive stop, he paid extra attention to Tony Pierson and Taylor Cox, the two backs who filled in for him. Although he enjoyed watching Pierson and Cox combine for 199 yards and a touchdown on 34 carries in his absence, there was a part of Sims that could not help but wonder how much he could have helped. If he had played, would the outcome have been different?

“It was pretty painful,” he said. “I was happy for (Cox and Pierson) but not happy about the outcome of the game. Knowing that you can’t be out there with your teammates due to a mistake you made is pretty hard to handle. I did what I had to do and I paid my dues and now I’m back and I’m just ready to go again.”

Up-tempo offense

With the rest of the Big 12 offenses playing at a breakneck pace, Weis decided to add the fast-break look to the Kansas offense and unveiled a tiny portion of it last week.

“We’ve been practicing trying to get the ball snapped in 15 seconds or less,” he said. “And it was multiple formations, too. We’ve been working on this quite some time and it was part of my thought methodology back in November and December when I said, ‘How am I gonna help the defense get better?’ Well, if I’m gonna practice it, we might as well put it in. They just thought I was doing it for the defense. But I’m selfish. I’m an offensive guy. You think I want to do all that work and not get anything out of it for the offense?”

KU-Rice connections

Four members of the Rice coaching staff either played or coached at KU during recent years, but Weis does not believe that the familiarity gives either side an advantage this weekend.

“Our defensive staff is very familiar with what they do on offense and vice versa,” he said. “(Rice offensive coordinator John) Reagan and (KU linebackers coach) Clint (Bowen) have been friends for a long time and worked together for a bunch of years. There’s not a bunch of surprises.”

Reagan coached KU’s offensive line from 2005-09, while Rice assistants Ryan Cantrell (offensive quality control), Adrian Mayes (offensive grad assistant) and AJ Steward (offensive grad assistant) all played offense for KU between 2005 and 2011.

Comments

KURiggins 7 months, 1 week ago

Cox is good too. Quicker than he is fast but I love that he keeps his pad level low.

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KURiggins 7 months, 1 week ago

I.hope we get to see more D.Miller and B. Bourbon in the backfield to.spell Sims. Pierson seems to have found his niche as a flex ..like McCluster is with the Chiefs. Both Miller and Bourbon are lean, strong and fast.

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Ralster Jayhawk 7 months, 1 week ago

Why dont we just watch and see if key players continue to improve, make plays, and put KU in a position to win another game? What is proved by predicting? And if you hold negative views, and KU does lose the game, does that mean you are "happy" to be proved right? Against your own team?... What a weird way to derive satisfaction...

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KURiggins 7 months, 1 week ago

Texashawk10 I never said you weren't entitled to an opinion. I said your not a NFLGM ..might want to read what I said. I said since your not a GM you have no choice or input where Heaps or any other Jayhawk is drafted. I am not saying Heaps will be a first round pick I am saying I am not arrogant enough to assume where he will get picked. You I guess are..good for you. I still doubt NFL GMs need or want your input. As far as this message board goes your right when you say where all entitled to.our opinion. That includes me..and guess what ...you not changing mine either. I want KU to win NC in football, several in fact and I see real talent on this team. You clearly dont. We know where you stand you think KU does/and will suck this year. Right? Now I am NOT saying we will be Top 25 this year or that we will even beat Rice. The difference between you and I as far as I can tell is I am not prepared to write KU off this year. You are. Not real sure why you will bother watching the games if you think were going to suck. But if thats you prerogative ..then whatever. Having participated in/and watching football for many years I took the first game for what it is. We won by 17, Coaches are trying to figure what works and who gets to play when. But most of all ..what Ive learned is its just too early to know. Frankly I dont care about your opinions anymore than you do.mine im sure..still trying to figure out why you felt that was relevant. I am just offering rebuttals. Like you said its..a.message board

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Dale Stringer 7 months, 1 week ago

Watching the TCU-TT game right now. We should be very happy with the way the Jayhawks played last Saturday compared to what these two are doing to the game of football. Every play longer than 12 yards is getting called back by some stupid penalty.

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KURiggins 7 months, 1 week ago

As for me..thank you Heaps, McKay for choosing KU to transfer too. I am very glad your here and I am sure I am not alone. Thank you for coming back Miller

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KURiggins 7 months, 1 week ago

Heaps could be a first round pick if he does well enough at KU. Unless your a GM yourself, doubt it, guessing you have no real say where and when he gets drafted. We do have an elite running game. Dont believe me..check out where NFL scouts have Sims rated. He broke 1,000 last yr in just 9 games against Big 12 talent. And they knew we were going to run. Sims is an elite running back. And Pierson and Miller have NFL potential too..big time. BTW Cox and Bourbon arent half bad either. Rice is a great team but were good too. Should be a good game. If we play they way were capable of, we will be fine. Heaps, Sims, McKay, Pierson, Miller all have potential to play on Sundays. No matter what sideline coaches and gms on this site say. And since its the NFL.they want to.impress I doubt they care at all what you say

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KURiggins 7 months, 1 week ago

Great, great post doctordave!!

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doctordave77 7 months, 1 week ago

KU is going to win this game by at least a TD. I say that based on;

1 - Last year's loss by only 1 point. Yes, it was at home. But we had no passing or kicking game.

2 - Heaps is going to be a 1st round draft pick in the NFL. He's a very accurate passer and his stats for the SD game are misleading as Coach Weis has said. Several drops in the 1st quarter but excessively pumped up receivers, plus a few throwaways.

3 - The receiving corps is much improved over last year.

4 - The running game is improved over last year too.

5 - The defense is improved substantially, and they didn't play all that poorly last year.

6 - Rice is the same team as last year.

KU wins 38-28.

Dave

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KURiggins 7 months, 1 week ago

So cheer for another team since youve written off the hawks. Cant find how many knockdowns and hurries we posted in the SD game. But we had 2 sacks and their QB was 8 of 18. Which happens everytime a QB has 10 seconds right? He ran cause he had too. And dude we did rotate in lots of players. But go ahead ..be the def cood at ku. You can give up before the game starts. Oh and BTW..the only stat that matters..we won! JC we won by 17. Not by a FG. But your right we suck. Pick another team

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KURiggins 7 months, 1 week ago

So cheer for another team since youve written off the hawks

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Doug Cramer 7 months, 1 week ago

Sorry for the repost....It didn't post the first attempt.

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Doug Cramer 7 months, 1 week ago

Yes I said 10 seconds. Have you not watched the previous 4 seasons of KU football...most notably the D-line ? It's easily a position group that has brought this program down the hardest. And if you've been paying attention...we're playing the same personnel that's been in the program for a while now. The only changes are McKinney...who doesn't start...and Stowers might be better coming off an injury from last season. Williams and Richardson are gone from last years team. We still have hope for Quel...but he didn't even play last week. The JUCO d-line revamp project didn't pan out...and it needed to. Bolton is hurt, Martin got in trouble, and Quel isn't playing yet. MJM at linebacker is a redshirt. So yeah...anyone that has followed this program over the past several years...can safely say that we have problems on our D-line. If the D-line hasn't been able to compete in the Big 12 since McClinton left...why would anything change this year with nearly the same personnel ? ? ?

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Doug Cramer 7 months, 1 week ago

Yes 10 seconds. Have you not watched the previous 3-4 seasons ? It's the one position group that has brought this program down the most. And if you are paying attention...you would realize that we are playing the same personnel on the d-line that we had last year. McKinney is the exception...and he's not even a starter. We lost Williams and Richardson from last years team. The new JUCO transfers for various reasons...didn't pan out. We still have hope for Quel...but even he didn't play last week.

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KURiggins 7 months, 1 week ago

Another thing. Campo may less talent in spots but he is a great coach and will.maximize what he has. 1st game he was feeling his DL LB DB out

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KURiggins 7 months, 1 week ago

So quit cheering for the Hawks, pick a different team since your ready to quit already. Me...I.am true Crimson and Blue forever. And again, your making a lot of assumptions based on one game. 10 seconds? What? The SD QB was running cause he had too. Campo was rotating players so we can go 2 deep. 10 seconds? I believe Ben Goodman had two sacks. We rotated a lot, a lot of different players and packages in. Football 101 ..experiment against lesser opponents, limit playcalls to the basic formations because you have limited downside your most likely going to beat SD. That is what Campo did. One game. Wow, one game and you already know everything. I bet you would say Peyton Manning sucks cause he did not throw 8 or 9 tds his first game. That is it I give up Manning sucks ..right?

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Doug Cramer 7 months, 1 week ago

Hey Riggins and Jackdavid - you won't hear me criticize Coach Weis. I'm glad he's here. Unfortunately he inherited a lack of talent in the trenches on both sides of the ball. It's tough to win in the Big 12 when you have FCS talent in the trenches. Aren't you tired of watching opposing QBs get 10 seconds in the pocket ? Did anyone realize Chris Harris was so good...because I didn't. He got passed on all the time...because the D-line couldn't pressure a quarterback. This year is no different. It's really not about coaching...it's about not having the size, speed, quickness, athleticism, and overall talent on the D-line...and to a lesser extent...the O-line.

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KURiggins 7 months, 1 week ago

Great post crystaljones and jayhawkuntildeath. Nailed it with a positive outlook

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KURiggins 7 months, 1 week ago

There's a reason your not coaching naysayers. You would give up before the season starts.

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KURiggins 7 months, 1 week ago

Thank God for the negative dudes on this site, who know exactly how bad were going to be after one game. Tell you what, call Coach Weis tell him what he is doing wrong. Its wondered we beat SD without you guys down there coaching. Thank God your here now to save us, tell us how bad the Jayhawks suck ...again after one game..how we should not bother etc...etc.. Nothing like true so-called Jayhawk fans. You guys should coach. You could give up berore the game starts

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Bryce Landon 7 months, 1 week ago

With James Sims in the game last year, we win that ballgame going away.

With him in this year's game, we exact revenge.

Kansas 31 Rice 17

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Keith Hummel 7 months, 1 week ago

Can't imagine how stoked Sims is to play this one. I expect him and the other backs to be dominant in this game, especially if we can keep Rice honest with our passing game. Overall, I'm not too concerned about our offense in this one.

Defense is another matter, however. Rice picked apart our defense last year on several drives, and that simply can't happen this year. The good news is we have a kicking game that can force them to go the length of the field. The bad news is they don't really have to go the length of the field because they have a kicker who makes 50-yard field-goals look like extra points.

If we can rattle off a series of long drives that chew up the clock and end in touchdowns, then hold Rice to mostly field goals (i.e. bend but don't break), I think we win this one. On the other hand, if we allow this to be a close game in the fourth quarter, the Rice QB will find a way to give his kicker a shot, and we will likely lose. We DO NOT want this to be a close game at the end.

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jaybate 7 months, 1 week ago

Not a good sign that an offensive-minded coach is playing catch up to the rest of the B12 offenses.

But Weiss for five!

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Jim Jackson 7 months, 1 week ago

Anyone know status of Kevin Short? Academic?

I posted this before but let's not forget that A&M benched 5 defensive starters the first half against Rice.

We should beat them

Rock Chalk!

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Reuben_J_Cogburn 7 months, 1 week ago

Got a bad feeling about this quarterback and our defense.

Rice wins it 42-27.

Would love to be wrong, and I'll come on here and admit I was dead wrong if necessary. I think there's a high ceiling with this team, but KU does not win on the road....period.

The Rice QB is exactly the kind of QB that has dominated KU since...well....forever.

I don't care if there are only 400 Rice fans that show up, Mangino was the last coach that could actually get these guys to win on the road. And even his road record was pretty terrible.

Rock Chalk boys. Nothing fancy. Best chance you've got is to ride Sims and Pierson all the way through. Keep the ball as long as possible, and we might...might....have a shot.

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Displayhawk 7 months, 1 week ago

Matt, Can you tell me please. Is the Spencer (Colin?) kid from Texas going to redshirt? I heard alot about him in pre-season, but not so much lately.

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KURiggins 7 months, 1 week ago

First, Sims is a stud. Barring an injury will be playing on Sunday's soon. It is way, way too early to assume we don' t have enough talent in the "trenches" or on defense period and I will.proceed to tell you why. First, we got a lot of Juco talent this year, in addition to HS talent. Some came on campus early, some later. Coach Campo is still trying to A.) Get the whole defense to gel and be smooth. B.) Figure out what packages work and when.I say again and again the days of just one unit, the starting unit on defense are gone..let them go! As many plays as teams run now you have to be able to go two or three deep at each position. It takes time to figure out what units do best together and what packages work best. What you guys saw against SD was experimentation NOTHING more! The coaches were confident they could be SD so they shuffled their lineups a lot. Especially on defense. And got as many snaps for each player they could without risking victory. Who won again? Remind me. By 17 points! You guys make it sound like we won on a last second field goal. We won by 17. Once we got rolling we took care of business. And again, watch the tape(which is what coaches do, and your off field coaches). You will see a team trying to figure out what works, what doesn't against a lesser oppenent. Nothing more! That is why our first game was against SD, don't fool yourselves. Coach Weis and Coach Campo have a plan. Do we have the talent to hold up? I don't either, but unlike some on this blog am smart enough to know we don't know enough yet! But then I am sure those on this site ready to snap to judgement already, and have written the Jayhawks off already(real Jayhawk fans huh?) know way, way more than Coach Weis and Coach Campo despite their sixty plus combined years coaching at every level. Even the NFL. I am sure the naysayers here know way,way more than those coaches.

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nuleafjhawk 7 months, 1 week ago

When did Rice - RICE - become such a powerhouse? The past few days I've got the feeling that Alabama is suiting up in RICE OWLS uniforms and is gonna put a big time hurt on us.

It's RICE. Breakfast cereal. If we can't beat these fellows, it's going to be a Looooooooooong season.

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Doug Cramer 7 months, 1 week ago

Rockchalk1978...these boys lack talent in the trenches...particularly on defense. It's gonna show this weekend. Hopefully our offense somehow out scores them.

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John Fitzgerald 7 months, 1 week ago

I agree, we do need that swag. That comes from confidence, and confidence comes from winning. When you watch teams like Alabama, Ohio St., Texas A&M, Oregon, and Stanford you notice the swag. They come out and know they're going to win games. I feel like our guys hesitate in certain situations and second guess their decision making abilities. There's nothing worse than second guessing yourself or not believing you can win. I think Weis should show them the documentary "Undefeated" before the game. It's a movie about some troubled high school kids that are used to losing, but the coach brings them together and they have a great season. So many things these kids go through during the season, but they played with swagger. Didn't matter how bad it got, or how much they were underdogs, they played to win the game. And it's not our guys' fault they don't have the swag, it's hard to have confidence when you're not winning. But we're undefeated right now, and if those kids in the documentary can overcome obstacles that I'm sure some of our players have had to overcome, then they can gain that confidence and earn the swagger. Let's go guys! See the win, play to win, and celebrate the win. RCJH!

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Adam McEwen 7 months, 1 week ago

from what I saw in the first game, these hawks have the tools, but they need some swagger. Show us some BALLS!! These guys are just lacking that whoop some ass mentality, go out there and get some fellas! Represent. Showing balls I mean metaphorically, not literally, we don't wanna see that...

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Andy Hess 7 months, 1 week ago

Adrian Mayes is a defensive line coach, not an offensive grad assistant.

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ahpersecoachingexperience 7 months, 1 week ago

I'd love to dog rice stadium but guess what...no track!

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