Saturday, October 6, 2018

Quick recap: Kansas falls to No. 9 West Virginia

Coach David Beaty watching the team during pregame workout on Saturday, Sept. 1, 2018 at Memorial Stadium.

Coach David Beaty watching the team during pregame workout on Saturday, Sept. 1, 2018 at Memorial Stadium.


The University of Kansas football team was unable to do enough to pull off the upset over No. 9 West Virginia.

WVU led the entire contest during a 38-22 home win over KU Saturday at Milan Puskar Stadium. The Jayhawks (2-4, 0-3 Big 12) created four takeaways on the defensive end, while holding the Mountaineers (5-0, 3-0) under its scoring average of 43.2 points per game. Kansas has dropped the previous five meetings with West Virginia

Senior quarterback Will Grier, who is considered a Heisman candidate, struggled against the Jayhawks’ defense. Grier completed 28 of 41 passes for 332 yards and four scores, but he also tossed three interceptions.

Kansas used two different quarterbacks in a losing effort.

Carter Stanley, who got the start for the second straight week, was 5 of 8 on the day. Senior quarterback Peyton Bender went 16-for-25 through the air for 191 yards and two scores. Both Stanley and Bender threw an interception, which was something the Jayhawks had avoided through the first five weeks.

The game turned when: Kansas failed to convert on fourth down on the first offensive drive.

Kansas forced West Virginia to punt on the opening drive after three plays, and had an opportunity to strike first. Head coach David Beaty elected to go for it on fourth and short near midfield, demonstrating aggressiveness as a 28-point underdog.

Stanley attempted to keep the ball on a read option with freshman running back Pooka Williams, once the defensive end crashed hard. However, Stanley fumbled on the exchange and ended up losing yards on the play. Stanley made the correct read, and appeared poised to pick up enough for the first down.

The Mountaineers took a 7-0 advantage on the ensuing drive, and the Jayhawks trailed for the rest of the afternoon.

Offensive highlight: Senior quarterback Peyton Bender scores on his first drive.

Bender replaced Stanley on the fourth drive of the first half, and marched the Jayhawks down the field on a six-play scoring drive. Bender connected with tight end Marvin Saunders on a 18-yard post for the team’s lone score of the first half. For Saunders, it was the first touchdown of his career.

But the play before the score was actually the best moment of the drive. On third down, Bender delivered a strike to Kerr Johnson Jr., who made the over-the-shoulder grab before going out of bounds.

None by Shane Jackson

Defensive highlight: Junior Hasan Defense notched a pair of interceptions in the defeat.

Entering Saturday, West Virginia boasted the best red zone offense by scoring every trip through four games. Defense, though, claimed two different interceptions in the red zone to halt a pair of scoring threats by the Mountaineers.

Kansas threw its own interception following Defense’s second takeaway, which he actually nearly took all the way back for a touchdown.

None by Shane Jackson

Davon Ferguson claimed an interception in the final minute of the first half, shutting down another West Virginia drive that ended in the red zone.

Key stat: Kansas struggled to take advantage of turnovers, scoring a total of seven points on four turnovers.

The Jayhawks registered four takeaways against the Mountaineers, including three in the red zone. Entering Saturday, Kansas had the best turnover margin in the nation and had shown the ability to create turnovers on a weekly basis. The offense, however, only scored one touchdown off these decisive takeaways.

Up next: After a bye week, Kansas travels to Texas Tech on Saturday, Oct. 20.



9:28 — Leddie Brown 15 pass from Will Grier. Evan Staley kick. Four-play drive for 35 yards, in 2:03. (WVU 7, KU 0.)

5:21 — Brown 1 run. Staley kick. Seven-play drive for 80 yards, in 2:12. (WVU 14, KU 0.)

0:12 — Mavin Saunders 18 pass from Peyton Bender. Gabriel Rui kick. Six-play drive for 72 yards, in 2:11. (WVU 14, KU 7.)


11:52 — Jovani Haskins 14 pass from Grier. Staley kick. Seven-play drive for 75 yards, in 3:20. (WVU 21, KU 7.)


10:50 — Khalil Herbert 31 run. Rui kick. Seven-play drive for 75 yards, in 4:10. (WVU 21, KU 14.)

0:00 — Martell Pettaway 12 pass from Grier. Staley kick. Eleven-play drive for 77 yards, in 4:21. (WVU 28, KU 14.)


5:05 — Staley 49 field goal. Eight-play drive for 30 yards, in 3:35. (WVU 31, KU 14.)

2:20 — David Sills V 17 pass from Grier. Two-play drive for 30 yards, in 0:41. (WVU 38, KU 14)

0:00 — Daylon Charlot 18 pass from Bender. PAT pass from Bender to Kwamie Lassiter good. Nine-play drive for 75 yards, in 2:20. (WVU 38, KU 22)


Kevin Robert Fest 2 years ago

Proud of the team. All you can ask is that it is competitive at this point and it was great job by the defense, just wish we could have turned a couple of those turnovers into points. Just don't have any oftense, defense held it together for us today. Still don't understand the quarterback rotation but what do I know.

Kevin Robert Fest 2 years ago

Getting those turnovers in the red zone was a huge +, without them this would have been a mugging.

Brian Wilson 2 years ago

May have been a different game if the incomplete had been correctly called as an interception. KU did play a little better. Coaching was still not good, bad offensive play calling...but, the good was our defense played well and created some turnovers, even though we wasted them. Nothing really different from Beaty....he just never seems to improve or adjust and when you do it over and over and over and expect different results, how long do we continue to pursue this insanity.

Brett Hathaway 2 years ago

Yep, we did better than I had anticipated. I thought our D would fold and give up 50+, so there is a round of applause. Texas upset OU, so my thoughts of beating the Horns have circled down the toilet. Well, I doubt anything will happen during bye week. Lets hope we can stop TTech (avg 48 ppg). Great post game by DB too on his QB strategies, thanks bud!!

David Kemp 2 years ago

Current offense will win no games. We are challenged to score points and sustain drives. Meachum needs to make an offense that can help pooka get into the secondary

Len Shaffer 2 years ago

"Junior Hasan Defense notched a pair of interceptions in the defeat."

Actually he had three interceptions; it's just that one of them wasn't called. As Brian pointed out, that could have made a huge difference. And let's not also forget the HUGE fumble by Lassiter at the WV 41-yard-line, when we still had a chance.

All in all, it was certainly better than in the past, but it's still not enough for Beaty to be given another year. And keep in mind that he's not redshirting anyone and we're losing a lot of good players at the end of this year, so there's a distinct possibility that we'll actually be worse again next year.

Adam Engelbrecht 2 years ago

Proud of the kids (for the most part), but it's so frustrating to watch how undisciplined they are. Wasting timeouts, horrrrrrrible decision making at QB at times (taking huge sacks when they totally could have been avoided), and the dumb penalties. You have to put SOME of this on the kids, but the vast, vast majority of it is the coaches.

I also couldn't believe how many blown coverages there were today. So many receivers wide open, and i'm talking WIDE open.

Just so disappointing to watch one side of the ball play pretty well for the most part, and the other has a few good plays but for the most part was truly awful. Defense kept them relatively close, but still made some glaring mistakes. The offense on the other hand, hand a handful of good plays, but was inept for 90 percent of the game. Sad.

Randy Bombardier 2 years ago

The defense did ok. Offense was missing. Have to wonder.

Dane Pratt 2 years ago

If this was year three I would be encouraged by the progress. Convincing non-con wins over two teams who beat us in previous games and three conference losses that are not total embarrassments as in previous years. This team plays 4 quarters. The same cannot be said in previous seasons.

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