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Saturday, September 16, 2017

Keegan

Tom Keegan: Sheahon Zenger’s seat hottest of all

Kansas wide receiver Chase Harrell (3) is taken off of his feet as he is hit by Ohio cornerback Bradd Ellis (3) during the fourth quarter on Saturday, Sept. 16, 2017 at Peden Stadium in Athens, Ohio.

Kansas wide receiver Chase Harrell (3) is taken off of his feet as he is hit by Ohio cornerback Bradd Ellis (3) during the fourth quarter on Saturday, Sept. 16, 2017 at Peden Stadium in Athens, Ohio.

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Athens, Ohio — Well, this was a new look: The seats began trending toward empty at halftime and the home team was winning easily.

Even the boosters of the victors couldn’t stay interested in watching Kansas football, which lost by double digits to a MAC school for the second week in a row Saturday, this time by a misleading 42-30 score to Ohio University at Peden Stadium.

The tame crowd, numbering 22,056 and urged throughout the afternoon by the public address announcer to “get agitated,” had nothing to do with the Kansas road losing streak swelling to an unfathomable 42 games.

Even careless turnovers from a Kansas offense that led the nation in them a year ago could not be blamed. The Jayhawks turned it over just once and edged OU in total yards, 451-450. Yet, more of the same in terms of genuinely making a game of it. A touchdown on the final play made the score more respectable than the mismatch felt.

Kansas hasn’t won a road football game since Barack Obama’s first year in the White House, back when Sheahon Zenger headed the Illinois State athletic department, Donald Trump was firing celebrities on "The Apprentice" and Kansas was coming off back-to-back bowl victories. Kansas 34, UTEP 7 on Sept. 12, 2009, feels like a thousand lifetimes ago.

Way back when Zenger talked and Rock Chalked his way through his introductory press conference by breaking his life and career into chapters, nobody’s wildest nightmares could have imagined what the man with the best intentions would do to the Kansas football program.

After all, this was a football-first administrator who had worked as recruiting coordinator for humble, understated football genius Bill Snyder, mastermind of college football’s most improbable turnaround.

So what does Zenger do after firing Turner Gill? After June Jones turns him down, he hires Charlie Weis, an NFL coach who had failed at fabled Notre Dame and as offensive coordinator for speed-rich Florida. If that’s not a formula for success at Kansas, gee, I don’t know what is. Zenger addressed his mistake — without ever publicly confessing to it, by the way — by canning Weis and promoting Clint Bowen to interim head coach. Zenger, shall we say, strongly suggested to Bowen (and later to the next head coach) that he would remain as defensive coordinator if only he would do his alma mater a solid by coaching the final eight games of the 2014 season.

Bowen breathed life into the team and even snagged an inspiring Big 12 victory over Iowa State, at which point many began calling for the removal of the interim tag. Zenger seemed to resent those opinions. He was the one with the power to make the hire and he wasn’t about to let anyone tell him what he should or shouldn’t do. The Bowen backers were easy to squash once the Jayhawks took back-to-back beatings to end the season and Zenger sprinted as far away from Weis’ profile as possible and hired David Beaty, the energetic Texas A & M recruiting coordinator/receivers coach who had been a KU receivers coach for Mark Mangino and Gill. Zenger thought about hiring Air Force coach Troy Calhoun, who would have made Kansas into, by far, the Big 12’s most run-heavy football program. Zenger found Beaty’s potential for luring Texas recruits to Kansas too attractive to resist. So far, KU has received 10 verbal commitments from the Class of 2018. Quarterback Clayton Tune is the only one from the state of Texas.

Beaty inherited a mess, particularly at offensive line, a unit best built with high school players who redshirt a year and ideally don’t break into the starting lineup until their fourth and fifth years in a program. Kansas didn’t have the option to withhold playing time until the weight room does its magic and has thrown many scholarships at the problem that in some cases could have been used for a safety or two.

It takes five years to build a college football program and real progress should start showing midway through that period. Beaty has eight games remaining in his third season and has a 3-24 record. Gill, who inherited Mangino’s program and was hired by Lew Perkins, was fired at 5-19. Weis, who inherited a mixture Mangino and Gill recruits, was fired at 6-22.

The poor academic standing of too many of Gill’s players accelerated his firing, and Weis’ attitude — it didn’t seem as if he was that into the job at Kansas — and quick-fix recruiting approach hastened his departure. Beaty is ahead of both of his predecessors in those areas and deserves to show what he can do with the rest of this season.

Typically, fans turn on a coordinator before the head coach. Beaty already has used up his Mulligans on assistant hires, so even though many fans emotionally are turning on Bowen because his defense has been putrid the past two weeks, that’s not the place to turn.

It was Zenger who hired Bowen as DC for Beaty and Zenger has had six seasons worth of football hires to show that he’s a strong football AD. Zenger’s hires have a 10-53 record, a .159 winning percentage.

At this point, Zenger’s not capable of evaluating the football program objectively because he knows that firing the coach is not an option because no AD gets three chances to get it right.

So, as uncomfortable as this is to write about a nice guy who leads with a down-to-earth personality, I have no choice but to reach the conclusion that new chancellor, Dr. Doug Girod, would be wise to hold a press conference on Monday to announce that he is relieving Mr. Zenger of his duties, effective immediately, and that a replacement for Zenger will be in place before the end of the football season. Then Girod could refer all questions regarding the status of the football coach to the as-yet-named next AD, get out of Beaty’s way, and let him coach his football team. Girod’s not the one who gave Zenger a raise to $700,000 and extended him through 2021 with a maximum buyout of $1.4 million. His predecessor did.

Based on how much progress KU shows in the nine-game Big 12 season, the new AD might decide he wants to see what Beaty could accomplish with a fourth year. Or she or he might want to act sooner.

What do I think the chances are that Dr. Girod will hold an emergency news conference to cut ties so quickly with his friend, Mr. Zenger? Zero. Zilch. Zip. Nada. Instead, I think a fresh twist on an age-old philosophical question will come out of next Saturday’s game vs. West Virginia at Memorial Stadium.

If the lopsided scoreboard shows the home team in arrears and the video screen shows members of the home team’s football program dancing on the sideline as noise pollution billows out the loudspeakers and nobody is there to see it, does it create an image?

— See what people were saying about the game during KUsports.com's live coverage.


More news and notes from Kansas vs. Ohio

Comments

Bryce Landon 1 month ago

"Mr." Zenger? Did Kansas State or wherever it was he earned his doctorate from make him give the title back?

Brian Leslie 1 month ago

Kind of funny that the "More like this story on KUsport.com" section just above is linking a story titled "Zenger: Program had lost support at all levels." I had to click to see if Zenger had just had a press conference. But nope, that's from three years ago.

John Gorski 1 month ago

Just change the names, story done!!!

Jerry Walker 1 month ago

"Zenger seemed to resent those opinions. He was the one with the power to make the hire and he wasn’t about to let anyone tell him what he should or shouldn’t do." -- Keegan

This isn't an innuendo it's an outright slam. Is there a source(s) for this? Just because one is writing about sporting events and not serious public policy issues - it doesn't come with a license to play fast and loose with the facts.

Brett McCabe 1 month ago

I'm guessing that Keegan has better information, resources and inside input than you do. Since you are playing fast and loose, what are your counter-sources?

Jerry Walker 1 month ago

It's apparent that the issue is over your head.

The attributes that you cited for Keegan are exactly why he should do a better job of reporting than a fan could. That's why we have newspapers and reporters - to provide factual info and not throw-away lines to support an agenda.

Brett McCabe 1 month ago

Oh yeah, the "you're stupid" argument. Just so you know, it's an opinion column, he's not "reporting". You do know the difference, right?

Jay Hawkinson 1 month ago

The burden should be on journalists to establish the accuracy of their claims. And Jerry is not making any counter-claims, just asking to see the evidence for Keegan's.

Brett McCabe 1 month ago

Jerry's asking for something that he is not owed. Journalists have sources, inside information and informants, much of that information is off-the-record. Without those agreements, there is no flow of information. This is an opinion column, so Keegan has no ethical requirement to reveal sources.

If this were a news or sports report, Keegan would be required to have two confirmable sources of information. It's journalistic ethics 101. It's a high standard that 99% of journalists take very seriously.

Aaron Paisley 1 month ago

He's not asking for specific sources, he's asking if this is inside info or Keegan's opinion.

Lawrence McGlinn 1 month ago

I like Keegan's take. I am tired of wishy-washy, blinders-on comments about the disaster that is KU football. I give him credit for a bold opinion, even if it is just his own conclusion.

Brett McCabe 1 month ago

Well, Neeli would have done it. Let's see if Girod can. This actually, really needs to happen tomorrow, Monday at the latest.

Remember too, that the second-biggest raise on the staff was for an assistant who was scoring all of the recruits from Louisiana. I wonder if he'll volunteer to give any of his salary back as the de-commits begin rolling in?

When Gill was hired, Chuck Woodling posted about the pendulum hiring at KU. You don't often see it within the same administration. How can one guy believe that both Charlie Weis and Dave Beaty are the saviors for KU football?

Zenger is a good guy. Pay him his $1.4 million, thank him for his work and let's get serious about football.

And Tom's right about Beaty and his coordinators. What's the point of firing any of them mid-season unless the team fully quits? Who are you going to promote?

It's over. Let's do all involved a favor and get on with it.

Sae Thirtysix 1 month ago

Indeed, BMcCabe is really jaybate; right Marius?

Matthew Gaylor 1 month ago

Zenger should be gone, but I find it hard to believe that he will. When's the last time a program fired an AD right before a 300m renovation? You fire Zenger, and those plans get scrapped, especially with a chancellor who likely has no idea what's in the plans. All the relationships and money Zenger is trying to raise for that project is likely gone (at least short term until the new AD gets in and smoothes over relationships) with Zenger being fired. That's why I doubt KU actually fires Zenger, even though the hires he's made, including WBB, haven't worked.

Brett McCabe 1 month ago

That money was gone last Saturday. The renovation announcement was delayed specifically because someone said, let's see how things play out first.

Charlie Gaughn 1 month ago

Zenger should've been shown the door right behind Weis. It was bad enough he hired Weis but then to watch him bring in as many as 20 transfers (many of which never saw the field) in a single recruiting class without putting a stop to it was certainly grounds for termination. Did he not see what that would do to scholarship numbers in just a couple of years? That's why firing Beaty isn't an option. This program was destroyed by the time he took over. TK I can only hope you had a premonition and the news conference does get scheduled for tomorrow.

John Brazelton 1 month ago

How about the Lawrence Journal World FIRE it's Sports Director and find a better one. Keegan you make a great critic. How much football have your ever played past high school and how much football have you ever coached at any level, past junior high? It will take at least 5 years to turn the KU football program around. Mangino found Reesing and after he graduated, he didn't have a replacement QB in the wings, or otherwise, he would still be Head Coach, had he continued to win his last season.

Mark Pahls 1 month ago

Keegan is the one that needs to go.

Brett McCabe 1 month ago

Yeah, that'll fix KU football. Get rid of anyone who isn't happy with the worst football program in America. It's laughable that anyone on this site is defending the coaching or the administration and is actually targeting their anger at the guys who cover it.

Jay Hawkinson 1 month ago

Zenger isn't the one who forced Mangino to resign and replaced him with Turner Gill. But you know who has been in Lawrence through all three bad hires? Tom Keegan. #factsonly

Brett McCabe 1 month ago

I was also in town during that time. Does that make me responsible? The sun came up every morning during that time period, why don't we blame it on the sun?

Yours would qualify as most-delusional post of the day.

Jay Hawkinson 1 month ago

Don't be ridiculous. The sun also came up every day when we were good. So that can't be it.

Jerry Walker 1 month ago

Some jewels from Keegan - who now - posing as an expert - calls for Zenger's firing.

"Peyton Bender, the jewel of the mid-year recruiting class...a talented transfer bringing the Kansas offense into 21st-century productivity levels...Match made in Air Raid heaven."

"Quarterback named Peyton potential answer to KU’s prayers"

(In 2018) "Senior Peyton Bender, coming off a junior season in which he broke all the school’s post-Todd Reesing passing records, is ready to put on a weekly Air Raid clinic"

Reminds me of a line in the movie "Forrest Gump"...yeah, you know the one.

David Kemp 1 month ago

And to think the Ohio qb was a fort Scott recruit!

Lawrence McGlinn 1 month ago

Zenger's friends and family are really stepping up, it seems.

John Fitzgerald 1 month ago

Hey Tom, if Zenger goes, what happens to the $300 Million stadium renovation? Not saying I disagree just curious.

Brett McCabe 1 month ago

What $300 million renovation? You think that's going to happen under the current regime? The best, very best hope for a renovation is a clean sweep and fresh start. There's so much blood in the water right now, no major donor is stepping up. Would you?

John Fitzgerald 1 month ago

You need to chill out. I'm looking for an educated answer from an educated person. Move along now.

Jerry Walker 1 month ago

jajaja...I hope you're not holding your breath!

Jay Hawkinson 1 month ago

Coming from the med school, I'm guessing if there's one area of athletics that Girod understands pretty well, it's facilities upgrades and donor relations. He might feel more confident in becoming the face of the stadium project than some chancellors would.

Brian Skelly 1 month ago

It's just hard to look at where we are now under Zenger with the football program and think he should still be around. It's not personal. It's business. At least as the athletic department goes.

As has been published in this paper, and others KU is the WORST TEAM IN FBS the last x-many years. We still have an athletic department that generates a "in the big boys club" 100+ million dollars in revenue. Think how high that would be with even a remotely reasonable amount more from a reasonably productive football program?

One could argue that's why Zenger won't be fired -- revenues are the highest they've ever been -- but I'd simply argue how much higher could they be with anything other than a complete dumpster fire of a football program.

Im not advocating for him to get sacked, I'd just point out there's no way to defend the record of the worst stretch of FBS football in recent history. None. And attempting to do so would be foolish.

How many ADs get to hire two football coaches?

Bryce Landon 1 month ago

"How many ADs get to hire two football coaches?" Not many. How many get to hire three? Even less.

Bob Bailey 1 month ago

How could anyone watch the first play and assume we have ANY defense? Would 2 do it? Score KU 0, Ohio 6. The Defense has been horrible for about 7 years. No tackling. No coverage. No Defensive scheme, except to give up our territory.

Bob Bailey 1 month ago

The posters who suuprt yhe rrefime have mud for brains. A better word would start with 's'.

Len Shaffer 1 month ago

"The posters who suuprt yhe rrefime have mud for brains ..."

Perhaps before you insult others, you should learn the English language?

Bville Hawk 1 month ago

The current problem, as I see it, with our football program is that we have a head coach who had never been a coordinator and is basically learning 'on the job.' I think this was evident last season when he took over coaching the defensive secondary and then made himself offensive coordinator. Hopefully he is not 'in over his head.'

To be successful at this level a head coach needs to be a competent administrator with the ability to delegate responsibility and communicate effectively with his minions so that everyone is pulling in the same direction in a coordinated fashion.

I think Coach Beaty has learned to delegate but the jury is still out as to whether he is communicating his vision and has the strength of personality to drive it home.

Our tackling yesterday was pathetic. The vision of Joe Dineen bouncing off the opposing QB and then the QB juking 3 other KU defenders to get in the end zone particularly stands out in my mind. We looked like little kids out playing "tackle football" with their dads...

Jerry Walker 1 month ago

Unfortunately, poor tackling has always been a problem for Bowen's defenses.

Aaron Paisley 1 month ago

Poor tackling is an issue at every level of football now because of the restrictions on how many full contact practices teams are allowed to have now. There's bad tackling at the HS, college, and NFL levels now even among the supposedly elite defenses.

Chris Condren 1 month ago

The KUAD and the Football Program will continue to roll out the excuses if the people in charge are allowed to keep their jobs. No one on campus has the ability to advance Kansas Football. Clean house and start again. To be where we current are in the third year of a rebuild in proof enough for me that we are in a rudderless ship being battered about in a large body of water known as college football. We are just screwed.

David Kemp 1 month ago

Really this needs a total clean out. I realize more time is necessary to right the ship, but I listened to beattys comments after the game and all he can say(rerun) is that we did some good things and that Bowen will fix the problems, and every qb we face is the next coming of Tom Brady. This is a guy at the helms of the titanic acting like this is fixable!

Gunnar Hays 1 month ago

Your Tom Brady comment is both funny and sad because it is so true. After Hawk Talk last Monday I was actually convinced that the Central Michigan offense was more good than the KU defense was bad. Not trying to sound disrespectful to CMU, but they were just stomped by Syracuse on Saturday after scoring only 17 points. I cringe at the thought of what could happen when KU plays opponents with legitimate first round draft pick talent on offense like Rudolph at OSU or Mayfield at OU.

Robert Brock 1 month ago

Next step: Flying anti-Zenger banners over Memorial Stadium. Could look like the Berlin Airlift.

Bryce Landon 1 month ago

That's the kind of thing I've seen at other schools. Never thought I'd see the day where such a thing would even be suggested, much less occur, at KU.

Brett McCabe 1 month ago

So, if you wanted to look at some AD/Coach pairings, one good option would be Tulane. Willie Fritz coached at UCM so he's recruited Kansas City, he coached Sam Houston, so he's recruited Texas and he's currently coaching in New Orleans, which means he's getting established in an area we are already recruiting. The AD, Troy Dannen was at UNI before Tulane, so he's strong in the Midwest.

Of course, there is Durman and Bohl at Wyoming. Though Durman is a lifer at Wyoming, so a package deal might not be in play.

As a coach-only, there is Jim Leavitt at Oregon. KSU can only hire one guy, so it will likely either be Snyder, Bohl or Leavitt. Any direction they choose, either Bohl or Leavitt is still available.

Though any of the above guys would be great hires, my two favorites would be Ken Niumatalolo or Troy Calhoun. The Navy coach apparently really likes the Academy, and most P5 programs are afraid to run his offense, but Kansas shouldn't be. In fact, it would really distinguish us as something different. Imagine the athletes he might be able to attract out of Texas or Louisiana to run his system. Troy Calhoun would also be a great choice. Both coaches have had to work with pretty challenging limitations in terms of recruiting, so the world would open up a bit to them here.

If you are concerned about personnel adaptation to option offenses, remember that we have a good stable of running backs and could move Schadler back to RB. Sims and Harrell could become featured receivers and deep threats, and you might have your option QB already on the roster in Bryce Torneden, though it's likely you'd need to recruit one. As for your other QB's and 3-deep WR's, help them find exactly the right transfer fit and allow them to pursue something better for their collegiate football careers.

Gordy Hoffman 1 month ago

Thank you so much for this thoughtful article. If a big part of your job is hiring appropriate people and you can't, you're not doing the job you were hired for. Take the buyout, spare your family and friends the emotional consequences of your performance, and see where life takes you. Good luck.

David Friend 1 month ago

Enough of this. It is critical. In three to five years we will have conference realignment.
We will be left in the cold if our football program does not change. Sorry , but chances are (although possible) that basketball will not carry us to the pac 10 big 10 sec acc.. IT IS ABOUT FOOTBALL. We were on the verge of spending 300 million on stadium. Spend money on a real head coach. Pay Chip Kelley. Go after Chris Klieman at North Dakota St. Bring the Pirate in. Get guys who know how to run a football program. As for Zenger. He has done a lot of good since he has been at KU but is he to be trusted as to hiring the right foot HC? I do not think so. But the changes need to be done soon. Otherwise will be in Conference USA!

Barry Weiss 1 month ago

man I wish we could get the pirate..Mike Leach. He's a boss!

Bryce Landon 1 month ago

We might be in C-USA anyway because there simply aren't as many TV sets or as many eyeballs to watch them in the state of Kansas as there are in other states.

Gunnar Hays 1 month ago

Chip Kelly would be a big time hire. I just don't know if it is actually realistic. KU would have to pay him a ton, and after this season he is likely going to have other options at bigger programs. Potentially places like Tennessee, A&M, Nebraska, UCLA, etc. Don't get me wrong, I would love to see a high profile coach like Kelly or Les Miles come to Lawrence. That said, I think if this program is going to turn things around it is going to have to be more similar to what KSU did thirty years ago with a guy like Snyder.

Clarence Haynes 1 month ago

Keegan despite the time that he has been in Lawrence, is still an outsider who stirs up a lot of stuff that would be censored if i stated it.

Len Shaffer 1 month ago

That's utterly ridiculous. I'm not a huge Keegan fan, but name ONE thing that Keegan has said that would be censored if anyone else said it.

Austin Lopez 1 month ago

Somebody give Reggie Mitchell a call and ask him if he is interested in the Kansas head football coaching job. I don't think beaty will last another 2 seasons.

Bville Hawk 1 month ago

As I recall there was a search committee that assisted in evaluating and choosing among the applicants when Beaty was hired. Those people should bear some of the responsibility for this embarrassment. I assume also that one of those committee members is the source of some of Keegan's inside information.

I always felt under Mangino, even in his first couple years, that we were making progress and that things were going in the right direction. I didn't know if he could get us past mediocre but I did always feel we were making progress. I don't get that feeling right now and haven't had it for a long, long time.

Lloyd Kinnison 1 month ago

We have the best looking team in the conference. We have set a new loss record. Is there a relationship.... I know the designer of the uniforms should be hired to design the playbook too!!

Doug Cramer 1 month ago

Zenger is the one that told Beaty that he had to inherit Bowen as his D.C.

Won't argue that Zenger needs to go, but Monday's presser should announce the removal of Clint Bowen.

Not a single season...not ONE...has his defenses EVER ranked above 85 in all FBS programs.

The proof is in the pudding, he is an incompetent D.C. That has never produced a good product. The Decade long hometown forgivness needs to stop immediately.

Brett McCabe 1 month ago

Beaty said yes. Don't make excuses for him now. If he didn't want Bowen, he shouldn't have taken the job. He took the deal. He owns the results. And, remember, last year's defense was the ONLY thing this team had going for it.

The defense has been terrible, no question. But, just like no AD gets to fire and hire three coaches, no HC gets to fire and hire three coordinators in three years. The season is lost. It's time to start cutting bait, not reorganize the tackle box.

Doug Cramer 1 month ago

What ???

Last year's defense was the only thing we had going ?

It finished ranked 113 !!!

113 out of 128 programs

Bowen needs to go !

Brett McCabe 1 month ago

And that was the best part of the team. Beaty's offense led the nation in turnovers and in quarterback shuffling. No one is here to argue that the defense has been good. Tell me the part of the program that's been good..............it's a waste of time. The whole staff has to go, no need to keep pounding on one guy instead of the two guys most responsible: Zenger and Beaty. Or you could be like the one guy and blame it on Keegan.

Time to move on. There are good coaches out there who aren't afraid of the job, especially since much of the scholarship work has been done, quite a few guys return next season, the locker room renovation is in place, the plans for the stadium are done/in process.

Doug Cramer 1 month ago

Clint Bowen's Resume as a Defensive Coordinator:

  1. 2017: ranked 106 (against SEMO, and 2 MAC teams)

  2. 2016: ranked 113

  3. 2015: ranked 128

  4. 2014: ranked 106

  5. 2011: ranked 94 (North Texas U)

  6. 2010: ranked 99 (Western Kentucky)

  7. 2009: ranked 85 (Kansas)

  8. 2008: ranked 87 (Kansas) <--Major liability to a returning Orange Bowl Team.

The proof is in the pudding. We need someone that will bring our defense back to respectability.

Randy Bombardier 1 month ago

I think Keegan is right. Football is too important to the future to let the same person keep making the same mistakes. A very good football program is the tide that lifts all boats, including donor funding, other programs, upgrades for facilities both athletic and academic. We need new eyes on the program. That jeopardizes nothing while creating unknown potential.

Clarence Haynes 1 month ago

Lloyd Kinnison, Re uniforms: The best teams (eg Alabama, Ohio St, OU, Penn State, Michigan, LSU, USC, etc.) year in and year out wear the same unies and they recruit the best athletes. When you have to sell a recruit on the fact that we we might have the best unies, something frankly is missing! I constantly, ask myself, how much time do these guys and the manufacturer ponder which unies to wear on game day! Could that time be used more constructively working toward an effective game plan and bringing in good high character athletes? Regardless, somebody needs to establish some serious priorities and right this ship!

Aaron Paisley 1 month ago

Ohio St., Michigan, and Oklahoma all have special uniforms they wear multiple times per season. Michigan wore all maize against Florida opening week.

Charlie Gaughn 1 month ago

The 23 permutations of uniforms just further signifies what a lost little child this football program is. When Glen Mason came in he realized that KU was a program with no discipline. He went to a very basic home and road uniform, black shoes, and no names on the uniforms. He also didn't allow every kid that wanted to have the same number have it. That's what a true rebuilding job looks like. If these kids don't want to play here unless we dress them up like something from Willy Wonka And The Chocolate Factory, let them go somewhere else. It's time for hard work and forget the silliness.

Len Shaffer 1 month ago

I disagree. If you're a powerhouse program, you don't have to worry about uniforms. If you're KU, you do.

If you're recruiting guys that have plenty of places to choose from, maybe a few little things like fun uniforms can make a slight difference. It doesn't hurt anything, and Clarence's comments are ridiculous about it having anything to do with an effective game plan. I'm pretty sure that there is absolutely NO connection between the two.

Alex Fletcher 1 month ago

you have seen Oregon right? I think they're doing just fine

Bville Hawk 1 month ago

IF the Chancellor does decide to pull the trigger on Zenger I hope he is smart enough to run it by Bill Self first.

Randy Bombardier 1 month ago

Hell no, keep Bill Self out of it. I sincerely doubt he wants that role. A cage coach wants only one thing...to run his program by himself. The last thing he needs is politics!

Bryce Landon 1 month ago

And besides, the chancellor and athletic director do not and should not answer to Bill Self; it should be the other way around.

Bville Hawk 1 month ago

I'm not saying the Chancellor and AD answer to Bill Self, I'm just saying that you don't want to piss him off if he feels especially strongly that you are giving Zenger the shaft.

John Brazelton 1 month ago

Once again, why would a 4 or 5-star recruit or even a highly-ranked 3-star athlete want to come and play football at KU after looking at all these comments by supposedly loyal KU football fans. How many of you have ever played football past High School or even coached at any level, even counting High School. I never seen so many experts in coaching football or hiring ADs and Head Football Coaches. I imagine that most of you have consulting firms that specialize in the hiring of college-level football talent and athletic administrators. You all must make the big bucks!

Lawrence McGlinn 1 month ago

I think the mess on the field and scoreboard has a lot more to do with the difficulty in attracting good recruits. Most of us are just pointing out the obvious, that our football team is the worst in the Power 5 and that some changes need to be made. Being serviceable in football is even more important given the precarious position of the Big Twelve a few years down the road. Everyone I've read on here who is frustrated is just participating in a discussion that should be going on in the administration. We need recruits who understand the situation but want to turn it around.

Len Shaffer 1 month ago

John, do you honestly believe that KU is such a different place that our fans spout different opinions than fans in other places??? What makes KU so different??? Forums like these are for opinions, and to quote what I'm sure everyone has heard before, "Opinions are like a**holes: everyone has one."

I'm pretty confident that message boards at other schools have the same range of strong opinions that you can find here. And as for whether we've played football at any level, that's 1000% irrelevant. You're not only allowed to have an opinion on something that you've done yourself. When you go to a movie, do you think, "Well, I would have an opinion on how good a movie this is, but since I've never acted or directed in Hollywood, I'm not allowed to have that opinion, and I CERTAINLY am not allowed to express that opinion in a public forum?"

No Yard Left Behind 1 month ago

No offense John, but aren't you doing to people what you're accusing them of? Aren't fans allowed to have opinions without being experts, isn't that the point of comments? I love Kansas football (I think you have to, to be able to watch), but something needs to change! This cloud that has been over our program for nearly 10 years has taken it's toll. The fans are here waiting, but you can't blame us for not being happy with the product.

Randy Bombardier 1 month ago

John, i suggest you offer suggestions, observationd to the problems instead of ridiculing those who do. You imply that either the problems will be corrected or there are none, or despite the issues lets just be understanding and accept our fate. If that is your position you seem to think there is neither a cost or risk to that position. I disagree. I think a great deal is at risk.

Joe Ross 1 month ago

For the life of me, I don't understand all of the ad hominem attacks directed at Tom Keegan. Simply don't. I'd tell you what I'd think about those firing the arrows, but if I did that I'd be no better than they. I understand having disagreements on the subject matter. Hell, this is sports. Guys (and the best gals) argue about their team. God knows I have. But the personal attacks??? Some of you guys are getting down in the hog pen with the likes of our dearly departed "friends" jaybate and Jay Scott. Some of you may not remember Bill Mayer. But he and I had several exchanges by private email on this very issue. For those of you who do, Mayer became quite the historian and shared his knowledge with us newer-edition KU fans. He was abjectly resented for it. One of his replies to me was something on the order of, "If the delivery boy stops to kick at every barking dog, the paper never gets delivered." In this world where people fire arrows and retreat to the bunkers of an anonymous avatars and invisible living rooms, a distinct kind of cowardice gives way to lack of respect. Keegs is a good guy who works his arse off to cover Kansas sports. It's kind of easy to make your assaults personal when there are no repercussions, isn't it?

Disagree if you'd like, and do so respectfully. Here's an example of how to do that.

If it's true that the chances of Dr. Girod firing Zenger amount to "Zero. Zilch. Zip. (and) Nada", then the title of this article can't possibly be true.

Have a nice day ladies and gents. And do try to muster a bit of mutual respect.

Can we?

John Fitzgerald 1 month ago

I agree 100% Joe. Keegs is just doing his job.

Len Shaffer 1 month ago

Well said, Joe, with one caveat: I wouldn't necessarily say that Keegan is a good guy. Given an interaction I've had with him (which I won't get into here), I'd say that he's an arrogant jerk (or at least he was in that instance). I also don't particularly like his writing (although there have certainly have been some times when I've liked it).

All that being said, most of the insults directed at him go way overboard and are not deserved.

Joe Ross 1 month ago

I can't speak to whatever interactions you've had an individual that I wasn't privy to, but follow me for a second. I understand that we are human and impressions gained are important. I won't deny that. But that's only half of it. The other side of the coin is that every one of us has less-than-stellar moments that we wouldn't want to be judged by. I have to ask forgiveness from my wife. Often. But she judges me based on the whole of my actions toward her and our family, which is pretty good even if I must say it about myself. Because of that, she's able to find forgiveness for a few of my cretin moments. I imagine most people are the same. So if we can make allowance to say that in the most important relationships we need perspective in judging actions, then certainly we can say the same thing for lesser relationships and interactions. Kudos to you, though, for being able to say you like his writings sometimes even when you have some impression. If I can say so, that's the best side of people that I'm attempting to appeal to.

Len Shaffer 1 month ago

Thanks Joe. Your point is well taken.

David Kemp 1 month ago

Off the subject Cozart continues to amaze at qb with 71 rushing yards and no turnovers.

Len Shaffer 1 month ago

Good for him. I'm certainly rooting for him to do well.

Lawrence McGlinn 1 month ago

He also was 15/19 passing. I think it is not off subject that much. It is just more evidence that the staff here can't develop anyone.

David Kemp 1 month ago

Maybe this tells us that in the right offense cozart can thrive, whereas KU insisted on running an offense and force the players to fit

Jim Stauffer 1 month ago

Keegan wins! He stirred up a firestorm about something that would not help the KU FB program one bit. In fact all firing Zenger would do is put pressure on a young FB Coach who is admittedly learning on the job. Whether we could have hired a more experienced Coach than Beaty is a moot point. We hired David. He is young at the HC position, but has already shown signs of at least understanding the discipline aspect of coaching which his two predecessors missed on completely. When you hire a guy to turn a program from a dumpster fire to competitive in a league like the Big 12, you give him 5 years. If he has not convinced you he is the man in 5 years you move on. We start firing the AD who hired him and Beaty is going to get happy feet and make mistakes trying to cut corners to success for fear of his job. Go back to bed Keegan.

Brandon Mahon 1 month ago

1) Everyone was hoping the KU guy could stick as DC and help turn the program around but unfortunately, the defense just continues to look terrible, and even with 3 preseason all big 12 players. It is time Bowen is let go and they bring in someone who really knows what he is doing. Does anyone remember Kevin Kane? Yeah, he is the DC at NIU now and they basically shut Nebraska down all day and pulled off the upset in Lincoln. He was our LB coach for one season.

2) Zenger must also be relieved of his duties and get a true big time football mind as the AD and someone who has been around major college football success. It is time that the job is taken seriously.

3) I think Beaty should be allowed to finish out the year and we get a new DC, now if Beaty is ever let go and the guy is still available, you have to pay someone big money to do a big job. I like what I have seen out of Brent Venibles, I think he should be one of the first ones to call.

Joe Ross 1 month ago

I, for one, don't think Zenger is sitting on a hot seat, but it must be made of thorns. Gotta be VERY uncomfortable having seen little improvement in the football team. The only reason why his seat is not a toasty 350 right now is because the stadium needs to go forward. If you want to fire him, wait until construction has begun, sometime next summer. A new AD will deal with Beaty and can more easily divorce himself from him. But by that time, Beaty will have a new season underway and we will have one more season to judge his long-term prospects from. When and if Beaty is fired, Kansas can truly tout a "new direction" with construction moving forward and a coaching change.

This may sound trite, but as abysmal as Kansas football has been, THIS MOMENT is a time like no other when we should listen to our head rather than giving way to emotion.

Mike Nicco 1 month ago

I agree Joe. Still way to early for knee-jerk reactions. This is still a relatively young team with a young head coach who hasn't lost his players. I believe the offense and special teams are improved. Unfortunately, the defense is not living up to last year's promise. If we were at full scholarship level, the graduation of an entire position group wouldn't be so devastating.

David Friend 1 month ago

You cannot wait until the stadium project gets under way. It is critical the football program is put in the right direction. Spend the money and get a coach that can get it done. Whether that choice is made by Zenger or not is another issue. And there are grumblings that some of the stadium money may not be available unless the team shows signs of improvement (I have no idea whether that is true or not). But it is September and no one has heard a word about the stadium since June. We have three to five years to fix the football program or we may end up in a mid major. That is a fact.

Bville Hawk 1 month ago

Monday has come and (almost) gone without a press conference.

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