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Monday, March 25, 2019

Topeka QB Da’Vonshai Harden Jr. commits to KU football

Kansas University football recruiting

Kansas University football recruiting

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As head coach Les Miles and his Kansas football staff continue building for the program’s future, the Jayhawks’ 2020 recruiting class picked up another offensive addition on Monday.

Da’Vonshai Harden Jr., a standout dual-threat quarterback at Topeka High, announced on Twitter his intentions to join KU, with a message thanking coaches and those close to him, accompanied by a photo of the native Kansan decked out in a white No. 2 Jayhawks jersey, which he tried on for size while visiting the program in late February.

Harden became the fourth high school junior to commit to Kansas, and all four players are offensive prospects.

Rated a two-star athlete by Rivals and currently ranked by the recruiting site as the No. 10 prospect in the Sunflower State’s Class of 2020, Harden totaled 1,602 yards of total offense and 22 touchdowns during his junior season at Topeka High this past fall.

While Harden also has picked up scholarship offers from Kansas State, Illinois State, Northern Iowa and William & Mary, he told Jon Kirby of Jayhawk Slant that KU was the first to offer. The fact that Miles and lead recruiter Clint Bowen made that happen, Harden said, was “really special,” because David Booth Kansas Memorial Stadium is “only 20 minutes” from his home.

“All my family can come to watch me. That means a lot to me because it shows Kansas has their eye on me and they know what I can do,” Harden told Jayhawk Slant.

A 6-foot-4, 200-pound junior, Harden committed to Kansas two days after Miles and his staff picked up their first 2020 in-state commitment from Shawnee Mission South tight end Will Huggins.

The in-state recruits are currently joined in KU’s 2020 class by three-star Alabama receiver Keenan Hambrick and three-star Lee’s Summit, Mo., tight end Trevor Kardell.

Verbal commitments are nonbinding. The soonest any of the players aligned with the program can sign with Kansas is December.

None by VonshaiHarden2

Comments

Dirk Medema 1 month ago

Another big recruit - physically more than otherwise, though otherwise is not meant to slight his ability. A 2* rating and 1,600 yards of total offense isn't much, but hard to tell what other factors played into this. With his size, and a QB's perspective of overseeing the whole shebang, the options are endless. I think there was a similar comment from Miles or someone else about the extra QB's in our latest class. Expecting at least 1 of the QB's to switch positions and get on the field with the other.

Karen Mansfield-Stewart 1 month ago

Welcome. Great to see some early Kansas kids commit.

Steven Haag 1 month ago

I’m a little shocked. If we are completely honest, most of us expected, or at least “hoped” that the pedigree name of Les Miles would go after some 4 star. He sure is landing the 2 star. Hopefully they have a high ceiling, because if they don’t, you won’t win many games in the Big XII with 2 star recruits, I don’t care who the coach is.

Brian Wilson 1 month ago

I'm shocked so many are unaware. But honestly Beaty did a great job of setting Les Miles for something good. Currently we have 101 total players that could return from last year. Next year's Senior class is massive in size at 49 players. I have the complete roster list with details from Our Lads. The numbers not including incoming Freshman are: Total players 101

Standard Sophomores 14 Redshirt Sophomores 16 Sophomore Transfers 0 Redshirt Sophomore Transfers 0 Total Sophomores 30

Std Juniors 10 Redshirt Juniors 8 Junior Transfers 4 Redshirt Junior Transfers 0 Total Juniors 22

Std Seniors 12 Red Shirt Seniors 16 Senior Transfers 7 Red Shirt Senior Transfers 14 Total Seniors 49

Only 7 of the massive class of 49 Seniors are from KS, MO But get to our young talented Sophomore class and Beaty left us ZERO transfers with 19 local players from Kansas and Missouri. Add Beaty's 18 he recruited and you have a really good core to work with plus if this next year's Senior Class has a good year Beaty could get a lot of press and recruiting could go through the roof!!!! RCJHKU!!!

Brett McCabe 1 month ago

You suspiciously left off the heavy influx of JUCO's Beaty signed last year.

Beaty was a trainwreck. He virtually destroyed the roster and the program. He's the worst football coach in KU history.

And what's worse....he was a colossal and epic failure at the one thing he was supposed to be good at: recruiting.

The Athletic Department emphatically stated that KU would not be at full scholarship capacity for another four years because Beaty so mismanaged recruiting and the roster. If we have 49 scholarship seniors this year, out of 101 scholarship players (both mathematical impossibilities, by-the-way), then that means Beaty limped through last year even though he had 49 scholarship juniors - all of whom had been with him from the start of the program. Something does not compute. Something tells me you failed math, don't understand what a scholarship is, and wouldn't recognize a football coach if Nick Saban offered to buy you dinner. I'll trust Jeff Long to tell us where we stand on scholarships. You know, the guy who fired Beaty for his incompetence.

Brian's next post: The Titanic really was unsinkable....and I have the facts to prove it.

Brian Wilson 1 month ago

First off....duh... not all 101 players are on scholarship. But seeing as you can't comprehend or understand I won't insult you but Thank you for brining that up......Because all of the Juco's are included in the 49 Seniors I mentioned. KU will have 49 Seniors and almost 90 percent of all the transfers will graduate together. But, with so many Seniors, it is possible that some of them could Red Shirt if they are still eligible.

Brian Wilson 1 month ago

Read down the blog and check the facts fnid

Brad Avery 1 month ago

I wouldn't pay too much attention to the "star" ratings. They are there for the entertainment of the fans, much like mock drafts. They are not professional evaluations of talent. Aqib Talib was a two star. Todd Reesing was a three star. Trust the coach to evaluate the talent, not Rivals.

Vern Sheldon-Witter 1 month ago

He is doing what he must to bring some sort of awareness that there is any other sport but Basketball. He wants to pick from the best that Kansas has to offer from. Smart Coach the Hat is. When I was at KU in the 70s, we had a Football Program and it rocked. The more he uses Kansas Boys in his reconstruction of KU Football- the better for KU getting Football as a priority again. Basketball isn't going away. We have a real Football Team for the first time in 10 years. Kansas pay attention, cause this could be the way out of Football Hell. Remember that at K-State it took just a Coach.......

David Robinett 1 month ago

Must win the state first.

I can’t remember the last time we had a recruit from Topeka. And that’s sad.

This is refreshing. Backing up the words of recruiting in state with action. Coach them up, then bring in a few jewels from Louisiana and Texas.

Brett McCabe 1 month ago

Momentum is a powerful thing. If you want more area kids to commit, you must get some area kids to commit. Da'Vonshai may help us retrieve the RB from Topeka HS who committed to PJ Fleck in Minnesota. The SMS kid and the KCMO kids (along with the relentless recruiter Jayden Russell) might help us get something rolling in the immediate area. Of our four recruits, 3 are from the area and Miles is working hard to get a 4-star lineman out of Free State. If Miles lands him, watch out.

When your program is down, getting local kids is harder than getting those from a distance. The local kids have heard for 10 years straight how bad we have been. Kids from Texas, Louisiana, Alabama, etc. may know that we haven't been good, but they haven't been beaten over the head with it relentlessly for a decade.

This is going to be a grind. We've gone for the flash two hires in a row and we've seen what it got us. Talent evaluation, a firm plan, a focus on development and unrelenting focus on a mission is what gets us out. I think that Miles will get a couple of four-star kids before the class is done. But first, he needs to create some momentum.

Craig Jackson 1 month ago

Marky and Carky Alexander were prize recruits from the T Town! Boys were not much on the turf but definitely could hold the run on court 2 at Robinson on a Friday afternoon. Whos got next!

Edward Daub 1 month ago

Yes! Marky and Carky! Identical Twins who played Defensive Ends and/or Linebacker, late 1970's I believe?

I do also remember a great Linebacker named Kyle McNorton! I am pretty sure he was from the Topeka area, early 1980's I think?

Brian Wilson 1 month ago

Here are the 52 Freshmen and the Sophomores from 2018-2019 that could be returning next year as Sophomores and Juniors:

Bastida, Kenny LB SO Pompano Beach, FL Channel, Nick LB SO Wichita, KS Copeland, Mac OL SO Wichita, KS Freberg, Dylan TE SO Overland Park, KS Harris, Corione CB SO Marrero, LA Lott, Jacobi OL SO Amarillo, TX Malbrough, Ryan RB SO Cecilia, LA Maples, Billy QB SO KS City, MO McNerney, Cody S SO Wichita, KS Murphy, Jack OL SO KS City, MO Parks, Jack TE SO Olathe, KS Roe, Spencer OL SO Lawrence, KS Williams, Nick OL SO Overland, MO Williams Jr., Pooka RB SO Boutte, LA Arnold, Jelani DE SO RS Irving, TX Barrett, Tom S SO RS Cleveland, Ohio Brungardt, Cole K SO RS Lawrence, Kan. Caudle, Nick S SO RS Atchison, Kan. Dineen, Jay LB SO RS Lawrence, Kan. Fallin, Miles QB SO RS Canyon Country, CA. Gilbertson, Joey OL SO RS Wichita, Kan. Haley, Dai Coye DT SO RS Atchison, Kan. Kaufman, Hunter WR SO RS Pratt, Kan. McQuillan, Quinton FB/HB SO RS Leavenworth, Kan. Root, Cooper LB SO RS Wichita, Kan. Schroeder, Sam TE/HB SO RS Wichita, Kan. Tabor, Kenyon TE SO RS Derby, Kan. Topps III, Robert CB SO RS Chicago, Ill. Williams, Jack OL SO RS Argyle, TX Williams, Takulve WR SO RS New Orleans, La. Bostick Jr., Earl OL JR Barnwell, S.C. Burt, Sam DL JR Abilene, Kan. Gagan, Donovan P/K JR Bellevue,Ill Hampton, Quan WR JR Texarkana, TX Harvey, Drew LB JR Crete,Ill Johnson, Kyron LB JR Arlington, TX Jones, Liam K JR Choctaw, Okla. Taylor Jr., Vaughn DE JR Washington, D.C. Thomas, Ricky CB JR New Orleans, La Williams, Dom RB JR McKinney, TX Clark, Malik OT JR RS New Orleans, La. Durley, Cam OL JR RS Houston, TX Hayes, Kolin LS JR RS KS City, Mo. Hughes, Chris OT JR RS Harker Heights, TX Lassiter II, Kwamie WR JR RS Chandler, Ariz. McQueen, Kameron WR JR RS Tulsa, Okla. Prox, Dru LB JR RS Kaufman, TX Thompson, Kyle P JR RS El Cajon, CA. Ferguson, Davon S JR/TR Baltimore, MD Kendrick, Miles QB JR/TR Morgan Hill, CA Luavasa, Jack TE JR/TR San Francisco,CA Robinson Jr., Stephon WR JR/TR Los Angeles, CA

Brian Wilson 1 month ago

Here are 49 Juniors from last year that should/could be returning as Seniors next year

Adeniji, Hakeem OL SR Garland, TX Brown, Jelani DT SR San Jose, CA Chandler, Julian CB SR MO City, TX Fairs, Evan WR SR Richmond, TX Frazier, Antione OT SR Huffman, TX Herbert, Khalil RB SR Fort Lauderdale, Fla. Klusman, Logan LS SR Lafayette, La. Lee, Mike CB SR New Orleans, La. Mane, Api OT SR East Palo Alto,CA Mayberry, Kyle CB SR Tulsa, Okla. Moragne, Darrius DE SR Holland,MI Torneden, Bryce CB SR Lawrence, Kan. Aql, Mazin DE SR RS Stillwell, Kan. Feaster, Denzel LB SR RS Austin, TX Feder, Kevin OT SR RS Ramsey, N.J. Ford, DeAnte CB SR RS MO City, TX Lawrence, Beau OL SR RS Overland Park, Kan. McCauley III, Clyde OT SR RS Arlington, TX Richmond, Shaquille CB SR RS Grand Prairie, TX Saulsbury, Hunter OL SR RS Stilwell, Kan. Stanley, Carter QB SR RS Vero Beach, Fla. Bragg, Jacob OC/OG SR RS Nacogdoches, TX Dineen Jr, Joe LB SR RS Lawrence, KS Ehambe, John LB SR RS Arlington, TX Patrick, Tyler WR SR RS The Woodlands, TX Randall, Reese RB SR RS Lawrence, KS Wirtel, John LS SR RS Orland Park, Ill Wise, Daniel DT SR RS Lewisville, TX Cole, Antonio CB SR RS/TR Tulsa, Okla. McCaleb, Willie DE SR RS/TR Grenada, Miss. Morris, Kendall RB SR RS/TR St. Peters, Mo. Holani, Isi DT SR RS/TR Kaumana, Hawaii Rui, Gabriel K SR RS/TR Hinton, Okla. Saunders, Mavin TE SR RS/TR Bimini, Bahamas Schadler, Ryan RB SR RS/TR Hesston, Kan. Charlot, Daylon WR SR/TR Patterson, La. Cole, Codey DT SR/TR Ypsilanti, MI Defense, Hasan CB SR/TR Jacksonville, Fla. Dixson, Foster DE SR/TR Los Angeles, CA Flomo, Kezelee RB SR/TR Fridley, Minn. Hempstead Jr., Elmore CB SR/TR Smackover, Ark Humphrey, Caperton FB SR/TR Ona, W. Va. Jones, Elijah CB SR/TR Cape Coral, FL Kamara, Azur DE SR/TR Glendale, AR Lewis, Reuben OL SR/TR Apopka, FL McCullough, Jeremiah S SR/TR Baltimore, MD Sosinski, James TE SR/TR Chandler, Ariz. Stevens-McKenzie, Najee DE SR/TR Cleveland, Ohio Tovi, Andru OL SR/TR Halawa, Hawaii

Brian Wilson 1 month ago

So Brett doesn't know what he is talking about and no one should listen to him.

When Beaty took the job, KU had 28 scholarship players. Beaty had a class of about 20 which gave him less than 50 players so he recruited 60 walk-ons just to practice. Not all players on the team have scholarships.

Of course, some players will quit, or transfer for many reasons. But take the 101 we have and add the 18 Freshmen for next year and Miles could have a group of 119 to work with. Over 70 of them will be on scholarship. Some teams in D1 ball never ever make it to 85 and 70 scholarship players is more than enough to field a good team.

It was not by accident that we recruited so many local players to the Sophomore class. It is not by accident that we also have so many Redshirt Sophomores. The Sophomore class next year is big, and filled with local players, and talented players that are the future of KU football.

The Senior class is filled with transfers. 90 percent of all the transfers will graduate next year. The Senior Class is also filled with out of state players, over 80 percent in fact. A major portion of the out of state players on the KU football team will graduate next year. Leaving almost 50% remaining KU Football players from Kansas and Missouri.

Looking at the numbers....Beaty had to be recruiting this way on purpose, he knew he was going to lose games and lose his job. Beaty was paid to correct the roster and the scholarship problem for the next coach - otherwise having maybe the tiniest chance of winning and remaining the coach. Beaty was a poor coach...poor game day coach. But, Beaty made a fortune for taking the heat in a job no one else wanted and if you just look at the roster what he accomplished was no mistake.

Steven Haag 1 month ago

@Brad. I agree to a point on not taking the star rating at 100%. I also know that GOOD coaches and staff can raise the talent of players.....see Bill Snyder(although there are likely 1 or 2 Bill Snyder type coaches in the world....he was a phenom). Bottom line is we need talent if we want to compete in the Big XII. Texas, OU, OSU, TCU have people on their staff that can identify talent as well and none of them were after these 2 stars. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not upset with the recruit and I get it that Les wants local talent on the roster. I get it and agree, but we won’t win many Big XII games with a whole team of 2 stars. That’s just reality.

Brian Wilson 1 month ago

True. That's why next year an amazing number of transfers and out-of-staters graduate.

It will truly be "The Jaylien Nation" with a bunch of former two star transfers and Juco players in the lineup. If they are successful and win next year it probably should end the argument against Transfers tho.....

After next year the majority of our players will be Kansas and Missouri. KU will recruit better players and fill the gaps with Local 2 Star Seniors that have developed.

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