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Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Avery, Coleman dismissed from KU football; Love steps aside for health reasons

Kansas University football coach David Beaty announced on Tuesday, June 9, 2015 that football players, from left, Corey Avery, Jake Love and Rodriguez Coleman, would not be with the team in 2015. Avery and Coleman were dismissed for violating team rules in the spring and Love is stepping away from football because of medical issues. All three were projected starters.

Kansas University football coach David Beaty announced on Tuesday, June 9, 2015 that football players, from left, Corey Avery, Jake Love and Rodriguez Coleman, would not be with the team in 2015. Avery and Coleman were dismissed for violating team rules in the spring and Love is stepping away from football because of medical issues. All three were projected starters.

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Kansas University football coach David Beaty announced three significant changes to the KU football roster on Tuesday and each figures to have a hefty impact on the upcoming 2015 season.

Linebacker Jake Love is retiring from football for medical reasons. Running back Corey Avery and wide receiver Rodriguez Coleman both have been dismissed from the program following indefinite suspensions for violating undisclosed team rules this spring.

No further information for the dismissal was included.

Beaty also announced that incoming freshman Shola Ayinde, a cornerback from Richmond, Texas, will delay his enrollment at KU and has not reported to campus.

As a true freshman in 2014, Avery led the Jayhawks with 151 carries, 631 yards and five touchdowns. Coleman missed most of last season because of discipline issues, but had one of the best 2014 springs of anyone on the roster and always loomed as a potential breakout player. It never quite materialized, however, and in his two seasons with the Jayhawks, the former junior college standout finished with just 245 yards and one touchdown on 11 receptions in 18 games.

Had Avery and Coleman remained on the roster, both would have been strong candidates to lead the Jayhawks in rushing and receiving during 2015.

In addition to the dismissal of two of the offense's top weapons, the loss of Love takes away another sure starter on defense. Love, who graduated with a communications degree in May, finished fourth on the team with 53 tackles in 2014. Those numbers included three sacks — good for second on the team — and 9.5 tackles for loss.

During his KU career, the Tonkawa, Oklahoma, native, who red-shirted in 2011, finished with 107 tackles while often playing in the shadows of future NFL draft pick Ben Heeney.

“When I think of Jake Love, I think of a hard-nosed, tough, physical football player,” Beaty said in a press release. “We are going miss his leadership and tenacity on the field, but we will also miss having a guy out there with the experience he has playing in the Big 12. With that said, nothing is more important than his health and him being able to have a long, productive future outside of football. I am really happy he got his degree and we wish him the best as he moves forward.”

In the release, Love also expressed his gratitude for the opportunity to play KU football for the past four seasons.

“I have met so many amazing people on this journey and consider many of them family,” he said. “Unfortunately, I have been advised not to play football anymore due to medical reasons. I am thankful that KU has given me the option to start working on my master’s degree in the fall and it’s something I look forward to.

“I wish coach Beaty and his staff nothing but the best moving forward and will be cheering from the stands come September 5. I (also) would like to thank the fans who have supported me through thick and thin and my parents who have been there for me since day one.”

The loss of three front-line players with legitimate experience certainly qualifies as another blow to an already-thin KU team. Because of failed junior-college transfer experiments during the past few seasons, the Jayhawks will open the season with at least a dozen fewer scholarship players than most schools and will attempt to fill the void by developing and using walk-ons to add depth.

Beyond that, those players who have played a meaningful number of snaps during their college careers, in most cases, were reserves or role players and never have been counted on as leaders or go-to guys.

That may hinder KU's chances to keep up, especially against Big 12 Conference foes, but Beaty will not allow the depleted roster to keep the Jayhawks from competing as hard as possible on a weekly basis.

“The number one thing I was looking for when we started looking at our needs, was roster management — getting the depth that we need and still getting the type of players that we need,” explained Beaty shortly after being hired. “But you've gotta have the depth. You might have the best player in the world, but if he gets hurt and there's air behind him how are you gonna play the game?”

Comments

Don Burgundy 6 years, 5 months ago

Welp! Keep the bball articles coming! This is gonna be a historically bad and historically long fball season. Looking for great things out of Beaty and Co. in year 2.

Ted Adams 6 years, 5 months ago

You better make that year three. The roster is sooooo thin and depleted from losses of graduating players and defections/releases. It's going to be tough to win ANY games the first two years unless a lot of the freshman and sophomores just turn out to be studs.

Don Burgundy 6 years, 5 months ago

Did I say year 2? I meant year 4, excuse me.

Michael Lorraine 6 years, 5 months ago

How do we appease the football gods that we have apparently pissed off in a very big way? Perhaps a sacrifice of some type.

Titus Canby 6 years, 5 months ago

I think the sacrifice was Michael Cummings. He's the biggest loss of all. Our season turned around when Bowen made him the starter last year. Has there been any news on him?

Ryan Woods 6 years, 5 months ago

While selecting season ticket seats, I spoke with someone from the athletic department. They told me he tore at least one ligament and probably won't be back until October. But I question how much the guy actually knew.

Bryce Landon 6 years, 5 months ago

The football gods have been pissed with us since the Colorado game of the 2009 season.

Dyrk Dugan 6 years, 5 months ago

This news absolutely confirms it now for me; all the frosh should redshirt. He really doesn't have a choice. The sheer numbers are so bad, that if we don't redshirt a bunch of guys, any sort of reasonable recovery is undoable.

I mean this is ridiculous. It will be bad this year yes....0-12 with 60-10 scores as the average in the league is definitely possible...but desperate times call for desperate measures.

Brian Wilson 6 years, 5 months ago

Very interesting suggestion. A one year kick start. So, I agree, Open the flood gates to walk-ons and start them all. Let KU talk a year's worth of beatings and then forget it ever happened. In the meantime you will find at least 3 or 4 players worth a poot. Then recruit another 25 to go with the 25 you reshirted. Bam! You have a building team with future potential. Otherwise, it's a 4 year rebuild. So, I agree, delay one year's worth of recruits and put the Weis fiasco to bed..

Ashwin Rao 6 years, 5 months ago

I like your idea, but it is important to show "some" progress, otherwise recruits who are re-looking at KU because of the new staff will move on. It is a trade-off...

Glen Miller 6 years, 5 months ago

You can't just sit our entire freshman class. That's about the most ludacris suggestion I have ever heard. What good comes of that? How do you suppose we field a team that doesn't get beat by 100 every week? Do you expect the fans to pay their hard earned money to watch a team of walk ons? How do you suggest that they develop and learn how to play college football in the Big 12 by sitting out a year? They need game experience and game reps.... not going to get that by just practicing and sitting on the bench during games. I hope this was just a sarcastic remark and not your actual line of thinking.

Joe Ross 6 years, 5 months ago

Game experience does something for development that practice can not do. Like Allen Iverson once iterated, "We talkin' bout PRACTICE. Not a game. Not a GAME! PRACTICE!" Playing on Saturday gives a kind of experience that always leads to familiarization, and sometimes leads to greater confidence (even in the face of losses).

Redshirting, and especially to the extent you describe, would in fact lead to a roster that has more longevity in the Kansas unis and more depth at every position after the upcoming season. The real question is whether or not that depth be better for forfeiting what experience it would have otherwise gotten by playing in games.

I am doubtful.

Ashwin Rao 6 years, 5 months ago

It will be nice to give him a role on the sidelines because he has already built relationships, so he can help provide the support to the coaches.

Aaron Paisley 6 years, 5 months ago

Losing Coleman isn't a big deal, Avery and Love are big deals. Avery was the best offensive player and was a legitimate playmaker and Jake Love would've been the leader on defense this year.

I would also be very hesitant about playing Carter Stanley this year. The OLine will be decent and the TE's should be a bright spot, but the RB's left are injury prone and the WR's are undersized and inexperienced. I would honestly just bite the bullet and suffer through a year of Cozart to help build for the future.

This season is going to be late 80's bad.

Don Everett 6 years, 5 months ago

I just bought season tickets again, for the second time. It's my feeling that the dark days are behind with one or two more on the horizon. HCDB and staff have a lot of work ahead of them. The turnaround will not be even close to being immediate. The JC route only works in a perfect situation. Redshirts and allowing quality walk-ons for a year or two in my opinion is the only way to build a program. Look at schools with lesser "football" programs and newly hired assistants that have had success. I have faith that the future of KU football is bright. Hopefully, everyone can/will keep their heads up.

Bryce Landon 6 years, 5 months ago

You are absolutely right when you say the turnaround, if it ever comes, will not be immediate. Gill and Weis ran this program so deep into the ground that I don't think we're going to sniff a bowl game this entire decade. Whether Beaty is the right man to turn the program around remains to be seen, but we won't have a clear answer to that question until the end of his second season.

Micky Baker 6 years, 5 months ago

This is part of the Weis hangover. Getting guys without vetting them for character was a mistake. However, I do not believe that Avery is as big a loss as Love is. We have capable running backs who are going to play this season. We lost Heeney and now Love. That's a bigger hit. But as long as people keep their expectations in check the first couple of seasons and support these guys through their development, I think Beaty can right the ship. It might not show until the 3rd or 4th year, but I believe he can do it as long as the morale among the fans remains rational instead of emotional.

Doug Cramer 6 years, 5 months ago

Glad to see that you finally came around about Weis.

In my opinion this is still the Lew Perkins hangover plain and simple.

Maybe next time our program becomes competitive again, we learned our lesson about running good coaches out of town.

By the way - Mangino is headed to Manhattan next season.

Rob Zerwekh 6 years, 5 months ago

I sold concessions during those obscene 1987 and 1988 seasons. I never thought I would see those days again. We have so few players, I don't know if we'll be in a position to redshirt all freshmen for the future.

Assuming Cummings cannot play, I say take lumps with Cozart at QB, but use one freshman to play the 3rd and 4th quarters when the game is out of reach. Get the kid, whichever one it is, Big 12-speed experience.

At RB, just play whoever is healthy, walk-ons included, and redshirt the incoming freshman Martin.

At WR, play whoever can catch the ball, freshmen included. That's an easy position to recruit each year.

We should not have to play any incoming freshmen at TE, OL or DL.

LB will be Arnick, Miles (if he's healthy) and mostly walk-ons I'm afraid. They'll be burned repeatedly.

We can probably get away without playing an incoming freshmen at CB or S.

K won't matter, since we won't get close enough to try a FG.

We might have to play two punters with all the work they will get this year.

Bryce Landon 6 years, 5 months ago

Indeed. I'd love to see Mozart waltz onto the field and do a minuet to prevent himself from getting sacked.

Dirk Medema 6 years, 5 months ago

You forgot about Watson at LB. He'll push Miles.

Michael Lorraine 6 years, 5 months ago

It's entirely possible football won't be around in a couple more decades so maybe this isn't such a big deal.

Greg Ledom 6 years, 5 months ago

Put the best players at each position on the field regardless of class, and build from there, period the end. If anyone thinks the mind set of this staff is anything different than that, you just might be delusional.

Brent Held 6 years, 5 months ago

probably a good year to be transferring to mizzou for grad school(still rcjh till i die) but wow this is bad news. if only traveohn wrench didn't become ineligible as he probably would be the go to guy at running back this year. I hope kyron watson can account for the loss of love so we will have to see. our wide receiver core is so weak, maybe we will have a surprise in someone like cozart stepping in and thriving. our tight ends in ben johnson and kent taylor should help ease the pain but regardless we are in trouble and it will be a test of resiliency for our players so good luck to them.

Bryce Landon 6 years, 5 months ago

Just like they've been coming since the middle of 2009.

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