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Saturday, July 25, 2015

Linebacker reveals his plans to play for Kansas

Kansas University football recruiting.

Kansas University football recruiting.

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Snow in Kansas in the heart of the summer is hard to imagine, but the Kansas University football program keeps finding a way to make it happen.

On Saturday, KU coach David Beaty and company learned that Kurtis Taufa, a 6-foot-2, 235-pound outside linebacker from Snow College had switched his commitment from Utah to Kansas.

Taufa, labeled a two-star prospect by Rivals.com, is the third player in the Class of 2016 from Snow College to commit to KU this summer.

He joins three-star offensive lineman Joe Malanga (6-4, 300), who orally committed to KU in May, and three-star defensive end Mania Perese (6-3, 281), who pledged to join the Jayhawks last week.

“It helped a lot they were also committed,” Taufa told JayhawkSlant.com’s Jon Kirby. “But when it comes down to it if they weren’t going to Kansas I still would have because of the coaches. That is the kind of staff I want to play for.”

The Snow College trio made a couple of different visits to KU’s campus during the past several months. And each time, they came away impressed by the entire Kansas coaching staff.

“The coaches were all good people,” Taufa told Kirby after a recent visit. “They tell me all the time they like how physical and hungry I am.”

Linebackers coach Kevin Kane and co-defensive coordinator Kenny Perry were listed as the lead recruiters in landing Taufa, and Taufa told Kirby that Perry had reached out to him while he still was a member of the TCU coaching staff.

In addition to Utah and Kansas, Taufa drew scholarship offers from Missouri and Washington State. He also indicated that coaches from Cal, USC and Washington told him recently that they had plans to start scouting him a little more in the coming months, but his connection to the KU coaching staff and the family atmosphere within the program was all that was needed to convince him and his family that Lawrence was the right place for him.

Taufa is on pace to graduate from Snow after the fall semester and plans to arrive at KU in time for spring football in 2016.

Comments

Joe Ross 4 years, 4 months ago

If you are a high school football recruit and you aren't considered a four- or five-star recruit there is no need to panic. Your chances of being a future NFL first round pick are just about as good as those guys who receive all the attention.

Source article: http://www.sbnation.com/college-football-recruiting/2014/5/12/5696710/nfl-draft-recruits-five-stars-two-stars

Sean Kelly 4 years, 4 months ago

Great find Joe. I'm amazed that recruit rankings continue to cause some so much consternation. I would've thought, at this point, that the history of some of our most accomplished Jayhawks would've put this issue to rest.

I'm not sure why anyone would think the program is in a position to select 4-5 star recruits. This staff must work hard to identify grinders, hard work-chip on the shoulder types and late bloomers until they win some football games.

That seems to be exactly what the staff is doing.

Doug Cramer 4 years, 4 months ago

So you're amazed that some of us recognize that there is a HIGH correlation between talent rankings of recruiting classes and a program's success on the field ?

Leon Trotter 4 years, 4 months ago

The actual source article is this: http://miamiherald.typepad.com/hssports/2014/05/almost-half-of-top-50-nfl-draft-prospects-were-3-star-high-school-recruits-or-worse.html

The entire point of the item you linked is to disprove the statement you pasted. (They even mention that the author of the original has since changed that statement)

From the article you linked: "Four- and Five-Star recruits were 995 percent more likely to be drafted in the first round."

Joe Ross 4 years, 4 months ago

There's no question about it. Youre absolutely right. Embarrassing admission: I saw the quote only and immediately linked the article without reading it. A reputation of being thorough goes a long way towards ones credibility here. I dropped the ball and you were right to point it out. Ill get it right next time.

Allison Steen 4 years, 4 months ago

I'm dying to know why you think KU at this point is capable of getting more than 2 or 3 star recruits?

Dirk Medema 4 years, 4 months ago

Maybe because we have good recruiting coaches - even better than ones in the past that were able to get a few 4*'s?

That being said, we have always had a solids diet of 2 & 3 * recruits that - when appropriately evaluated, brought to campus, and developed on the field, have been able to produce solid results. It would seem unlikely that a 4* recruit will be committing to KU before they are able to see some tangible results on the field, even if it's not a bunch of W's. Quality players will expect to see more than a yard sale before they buy into the good vibes of the current coaches.

IMO, it would be hugely successful if by the end of the season we can remain a positive, hungry 75% (64/85) football team, and can attract a few high 3 to 4* recruits this year. I'm only seeing 11 Sr (scholarship) players on the roster, which means we should be close to a full team (78/85 = 92%, 64 - 11 + 25 = 78) next year tho still young.

With 20 Jr's this year, we should only gain 5 of the remaining 7 spots the following season, but that seems like a good position to be. Just a little wiggle room to allow for a schollie or 2 to be given to a deserving walk-on, and provide motivation to the walk-on athletes in general. At that point, I would expect to start to see progress on the field/W's. Until then it's likely to be more crimson than blue.

Allison Steen 4 years, 4 months ago

We have good recruiting coaches who have yet to coach a game at KU. We won 3 games last year and will win probably less this year. While I expect to bring in better players eventually, the first year isn't going to be the year we do it.

Chris Bruning 4 years, 4 months ago

2 star only looks bad. What looks good in this case are the colleges that usually get the four and five star players were wanting in on this kid.

Edward Daub 4 years, 4 months ago

Don't let it get you down , it's only Rivals Ratings. Before we have a meltdown, consider these 3 recruits from Snow College as a package deal. Taufa is touted as Tough , Malanga is a true Mangler, and Mania simply needs to add a "c" and bull rush like a Maniac.

And their average Rivals Rating is 2-2/3 or 2.6667 out to 4 decimal places. Believe me when I tell you the Utah Utes are "not" happy campers this morning. In Beaty We Trust.

Doug Cramer 4 years, 4 months ago

I'm considering the entire 2015 and 2016 classes.....and they are loaded with 2 star recruits. Much more so than any of Gils or Weis's classes.

Dirk Medema 4 years, 4 months ago

"Taufa is on pace to graduate from Snow after the fall semester and plans to arrive at KU in time for spring football in 2016."

This is the Beaty requirement and difference to the previous unsuccessful attempt to use JC's. The fact that he had offers, and was starting to receive interest from other Big5 programs speaks to his ability more than his star rating, especially as a JC.

Richard Duran 4 years, 4 months ago

I hope this isn't he second coming of Samson Faifili.

Dirk Medema 4 years, 4 months ago

There are still Handsome Tanielu, 6'2", 305 DT, and Garett Bolles, 6'5", 290 OT at Snow College that would be nice to add, tho that might be a bit lopsided to one JC, tho they would fill positions of need.

On a lesser note, Xavier Kelly, is the latest elite in-state recruit to leave KS (Clemson). Can't necessarily blame him, but it would certainly be nice to see Isaiah Simmons and Amani Bledsoe, and others in the future play for the home team. AJ Taylor and a few others would also be nice even if not necessarily in-state or highly ranked recruits.

Eliott Reeder 4 years, 4 months ago

Bring 'em on! just having a dude named 'Handsome' on the team would make me happy enough...

Terry N Tom Denner 4 years, 4 months ago

Well as soon as the Big 12 Commish makes the the conference a laughing stock of college football { second year in a row } by not wanting to get back to 12 members or more, KU will be a Big Ten team in the near future. I can only hope so. Tom

Steve Jacob 4 years, 4 months ago

I don't know. Conference championships will sometimes cost conferences a spot in the National Championship. What are the odds that all four favorites win those games?

John Fitzgerald 4 years, 4 months ago

This is always good news. I could care less if we get 1 star or 5 star recruits, all I care about is winning. Ashamed at any KU fans that have anything negative to say about this.

Doug Cramer 4 years, 4 months ago

If all you care about is winning....then maybe you should start caring about the caliber of talent we're bringing in. It all starts with the Jimmys and the Joes.

Pete Hatcher 4 years, 4 months ago

Doug-Everyone would like to fill the roster with 5 recruits, but how in the world can you expect coaches to fill the roster with studs given the past results on the field? The best we can hope for are athletes that are willing to improve on themselves to turn the program around. At this point we have to trust the instincts of the coaches that they can actually develop recruits. Once a program is successful and the university is actually committed to the program (i.e. stadium renovations) then there might be a chance of landing 4-5 guys.

Steve Jacob 4 years, 4 months ago

Vegas odds came out, the over/under for KU wins is 1.5. Ouch!

Terry N Tom Denner 4 years, 4 months ago

Bring in four more teams and then let Texas and OU leave the big 12. Problem solved !!! Sick and tired of playing in the Texas Plus 9 conference. Tom

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