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Benton Smith

Stories by Benton

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KU football picks up commitment from prep D-lineman Da'Jon Terry

On the same night that the Kansas football program lost a commitment from a Class of 2019 running back it gained one from a defensive lineman. By Benton Smith

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Class of 2019 RB Cole Mueller decommits from KU football

A spot just opened up in the Kansas football program’s relatively small 2019 recruiting class. By Benton Smith

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Benton Smith: Close or not, No. 1 Jayhawks' victories valuable beyond their resume

Now is not the time for apologies. When you coach one of the nine undefeated teams in the country and, oh yeah, your team happens to be ranked No. 1 in the nation in both major polls, it’s hard to feel any remorse about winning a couple of those games in ugly fashion.By Benton Smith

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Juco WRs Ezra Naylor and Andrew Parchment commit to KU football

Les Miles’ first recruiting class at Kansas already had a running back and a quarterback. On Sunday afternoon it gained not one, but two receivers. By Benton Smith

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Benton Smith: Dedric Lawson thrives in second game as KU's center

Dedric Lawson, the paint is yours. As inviting as that sounds for an aspiring All-American, you’ll have to forgive this Kansas basketball team’s best all-around player for not diving head first into his new role as the Jayhawks’ pseudo center.

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KU D-line coach Kwahn Drake signs on for 4 years, maximum of $1.47M

Special teams coordinator Ekeler signs 3-year, $1M deal

When Kwahn Drake decided to follow defensive coordinator D.J. Eliot from Colorado to Kansas, the Jayhawks’ new defensive line coach signed a four-year term sheet worth a maximum of $1.46 million. By Benton Smith

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Once an LSU grad assistant, Mike Ekeler hired to coach KU football special teams

New Kansas football coach Les Miles sought out another old LSU connection with his latest hire. Miles announced Friday the addition of Mike Ekeler, who will serves as special teams coordinator on the KU football staff. By Benton Smith

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Les Miles hires Kwahn Drake to coach KU's defensive linemen

Drake worked previously with KU's new DC

Kansas football head coach Les Miles took another step toward completing his staff Thursday by hiring Kwahn Drake as the team’s new defensive line coach. By Benton Smith

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D.J. Eliot signed 3-year, $1.85M term sheet to become KU's defensive coordinator

KU holds options on deal for WRs coach Emmett Jones

When D.J. Eliot decided this week to join Les Miles’ Kansas football staff as the defensive coordinator, Eliot signed a three-year term sheet through the 2021 season worth $1.85 million. By Benton Smith

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Les Miles hires former Texas Tech assistant Emmett Jones as KU's WRs coach

The outside receivers coach at pass-happy Texas Tech the previous three seasons, Emmett Jones is joining new Kansas football head coach Les Miles as the Jayhawks’ receivers coach. By Benton Smith

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Juco QB Thomas MacVittie, whose career began at Pitt, commits to KU football

The Kansas football team’s 2019 recruiting class now has a quarterback. Thomas MacVittie, a sophomore at Mesa Community College (Ariz.) whose college football career began in the ACC at Pittsburgh, announced Tuesday afternoon his decision to commit to the Jayhawks, becoming the first QB to do so since Les Miles took over the program. By Benton Smith

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KU football DBs coach Chevis Jackson signed 3-year term sheet

The first assistant hired by new head coach Les Miles, Chevis Jackson signed a three-year term sheet with Kansas Athletics to become the football team’s defensive backs coach. By Benton Smith

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LB Joe Dineen becomes KU football's 1st AP All-American since 2007

Although his days of playing for his hometown college football program are over, the honors continue to roll in for University of Kansas linebacker Joe Dineen. By Benton Smith

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Les Miles announces hiring of D.J. Eliot as KU's defensive coordinator

New Kansas football coach Les Miles officially has both of his coordinators in place for his first staff. As reports from the Journal-World and other outlets during the hours leading up to Monday evening’s KU announcement indicated, Miles hired D.J. Eliot, a former defensive coordinator at Colorado and Kentucky, to take on the same position at KU. By Benton Smith

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In-state recruits Jayden Russell and Mason Fairchild commit to Les Miles and KU football

Cole Mueller finally has some company on the Kansas football program’s Class of 2019 commitment list. On a busy Sunday for new head coach Les Miles, KU picked up verbal pledges from two in-state recruits: St. Thomas Aquinas defensive back Jayden Russell and Andale athlete Mason Fairchild. By Benton Smith

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Benton Smith: Lagerald Vick needs to be good kind of 'bad boy' for KU

Kansas City, Mo. — This Kansas basketball team is undefeated. It’s ranked No. 2 in the nation. Yet its head coach, Bill Self, described the current state of the Jayhawks perfectly following Saturday night’s latest near-loss, a 63-60 victory over New Mexico State at Sprint Center.

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KU football OC Chip Lindsey signs on for 4-year deal worth $2.65 million; KU has option for Year 4

OL coach Luke Meadows' deal guaranteed for first 2 years

The Kansas football team’s new offensive coordinator, Chip Lindsey, signed a four-year term sheet with Kansas Athletics when head coach Les Miles hired Lindsey away from Auburn. Lindsey’s deal is worth $2.65 million dollars over the course of four years, with KU having an option it must exercise in order for the final year of the deal to kick in. By Benton Smith

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Les Miles and KU football targeting prospects ahead of early signing period

As college football’s December early signing period approaches, new University of Kansas head coach Les Miles and his not yet fully assembled staff have targeted some potential additions for the program’s currently minuscule 2019 class. By Benton Smith

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Les Miles hires one-time colleague of new OC to coach KU's O-line

Luke Meadows named Jayhawks' OL coach

New head coach Les Miles now has three of his 10 on-field assistant coaches in place for his first Kansas football staff. Miles announced Friday afternoon he hired Luke Meadows, a former colleague of new KU offensive coordinator Chip Lindsey, as the Jayhawks’ offensive line coach. By Benton Smith

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Joe Dineen once again a 2nd-team All-American according to SI

For the second year in a row Sports Illustrated named University of Kansas linebacker Joe Dineen to its All-America second team. The redshirt senior defender from Lawrence led the Big 12 in tackles (147) and ranked fourth among all FBS players with 12.3 tackles per game. By Benton Smith

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List of FBS assistant salaries includes familiar name near the top

USA Today released on Wednesday its annual list of salaries for assistant college football coaches, and a name that’s now familiar with the Kansas football fan base ranked among the top 20 of the highest-paid in the FBS ranks. By Benton Smith

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Benton Smith: Jayhawks improve perimeter defense to take down Terriers

Over the past few years, Wofford head coach Mike Young has found senior guard Fletcher Magee to be as steady a shooter as they come. The reigning SoCon Player of the Year, Magee has drained 3-pointers and averaged double digits since he arrived in Spartanburg, S.C., in 2015.

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KU announces Les Miles' hiring of Chip Lindsey as OC

New Kansas football coach Les Miles officially has his offensive coordinator. As reports from the Journal-World and other outlets indicated Monday, former Auburn offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Chip Lindsey was Miles’ choice. KU announced Lindsey’s hiring Tuesday morning. By Benton Smith

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Former KU football coach Turner Gill retires

Former Kansas football coach Turner Gill announced Monday he is retiring from his position as head coach at Liberty University, effective immediately.

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Former Auburn OC Chip Lindsey expected to be hired by KU

Ten days after the Kansas football season’s conclusion, a coordinator for new head coach Les Miles’ staff emerged. By Benton Smith

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KU football will need to replace half of its 2018 starters in Les Miles' first season

Roughly nine months from now, when Les Miles coaches his first game at Kansas, the football roster won’t be devoid of talent or experience. Even so, it’s impossible to look ahead to Miles’ first season in Lawrence, where he’ll face a far greater challenge than he did at his previous job, in Baton Rouge, La., and not notice the numerous positions where KU will need to find new starters. By Benton Smith

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Les Miles hires former All-SEC CB Chevis Jackson to coach KU's DBs

In his first official move as Kansas football coach, Les Miles didn’t hire an offensive or defensive coordinator. Miles began assembling his staff by hiring a position coach he knows well. By Benton Smith

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Benton Smith: KU's offense at its best with Dotson driving and dishing

The offense was listless. The fans weren’t into it. And a former Kansas basketball standout-turned head coach, Jerod Haase, had visiting Stanford in perfect position to pull off an upset Saturday at Allen Fieldhouse. Then freshman point guard Devon Dotson decided to do something about it.

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Les Miles makes halftime appearance at Allen Fieldhouse

Before the fans inside of Allen Fieldhouse had much to cheer about during the Kansas basketball team’s Saturday matchup with Stanford, the athletic department got the 16,300 in attendance on their feet by trotting out KU’s new football coach. By Benton Smith

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Dom Williams: KU's RBs excited about playing for Les Miles

When Kansas running back Dom Williams first learned, days before the season’s conclusion, that Les Miles had been named the football program’s new head coach it admittedly caught the sophomore off guard. But the more he let his mind soak in the idea of playing for Miles at KU, the more Williams liked it. And, Williams revealed, it’s a reality all of the program’s running backs are ready to experience. By Benton Smith

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Benton Smith: Silvio De Sousa still helping KU while waiting on NCAA's ruling

Now five games into what may or may not be his sophomore season, Silvio De Sousa still doesn’t know when — or if — he will again suit up for the Jayhawks, currently ranked No. 2 in the nation. But his head coach and teammates say the uncertainty hasn't weighed down the hard-working forward. By Benton Smith

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KU football has plenty of redshirt candidates from 2018 season

A number of Kansas football players appeared in four or fewer games this season, making them eligible to use 2018 as a redshirt year. By Benton Smith

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KU's Pooka Williams, Daniel Wise and Joe Dineen named All-Big 12 first-teamers

Williams is league's Offensive Freshman of Year

With the help of yet another Pooka Williams feat, the Kansas football program, in spite of its 3-9 season, landed three players on the 2018 All-Big 12 First Team. By Benton Smith

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Les Miles taking over KU football program that will continue to lag in scholarship numbers

On several occasions during his introductory press conference, new University of Kansas football coach Les Miles mentioned the number 85. It’s an important figure for FBS programs, because it represents the maximum total of scholarship players a team is allowed to carry in a season. And it is a number KU has been chasing since long before Miles even thought about joining the Jayhawks. By Benton Smith

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Notebook: UT's Herman seeks input from Beaty

Former Kansas football coach David Beaty hasn’t traded in his crimson and blue gear for burnt orange. But, according to Texas head coach Tom Herman, Beaty, who spent his final days with the Jayhawks preparing to try and defeat the Longhorns, now will at least play some small part in helping them out. By Benton Smith

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Benton Smith: No need to panic about KU getting leapfrogged for No. 1 (again)

Udoka Azubuike, Lagerald Vick and Dedric Lawson won’t be losing any sleep with Monday’s news that Gonzaga vaulted past Kansas to the No. 1 spot in the new AP poll. Neither will their coach, Bill Self, whose list of things to worry about doesn’t include any mention of how many votes his team did or didn’t receive. By Benton Smith

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Les Miles thinks KU football can win in his first year on the job

As Les Miles looks ahead to Year 1 of the massive rebuilding project he agreed to take on when he signed a five-year contract to coach the Kansas football team, Miles doesn’t appear to be a man ready to temper his expectations. By Benton Smith

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'Just stick together': David Beaty, KU football leaders urge non-seniors to return

On Friday afternoon inside the Kansas football locker room, David Beaty had the floor one final time. Fired 19 days earlier, the outgoing head coach had plenty to tell his players after their final game together, a home loss to Texas. But Beaty also asked every assistant on his staff to speak, too. And while the messages from the head coach and his staffers included words of gratitude and love, they also urged the Jayhawks who have a chance to play for the next coaching staff to consider what could still be accomplished at KU. By Benton Smith

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'Our time': KU football transitioning from old coaching regime to new

Even though the Jayhawks suffered three one-score defeats during their 3-9 season, the time for considering how close they may be to a breakthrough had not yet arrived on Friday. By Benton Smith

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Notebook: Jayhawks honor 29 seniors in final game of 2018 season

The hope Friday for the Kansas football seniors, particularly the ones who experienced the Jayhawks’ previous home matchup with traditional powerhouse Texas, was to duplicate the thrill of their 2016 victory over the Longhorns.

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KU football suffers 24-17 loss in David Beaty's last game

On the final day of David Beaty’s tenure as football coach at the University of Kansas, the Jayhawks would need a break or two to go their way on Black Friday in order to recover from a three-touchdown deficit and topple No. 11 Texas.

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Game day Breakdown: KU football vs. No. 11 Texas

Some of the most important players on the Kansas football roster will be playing their final game for the Jayhawks this Black Friday. So why not let them take KU as far as they can one last time? By Benton Smith

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'It's like a dream come true': Jayhawks excited for future under Les Miles

It’s safe to say the excitement and buzz that accompanied this past weekend’s news of Les Miles taking over the KU football program was prominent throughout Anderson Family Football Complex, as well. By Benton Smith

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David Beaty wants new coach Les Miles to take KU football to 'next level'

As David Beaty closes out his final days as football coach at the University of Kansas, he couldn’t escape at least a few questions about the future of the program and his successor, Les Miles. "I hope and pray for Jayhawk nation that they will get behind him, that they will give him the things that he needs to be successful," Beaty said. By Benton Smith

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During time off, new KU football coach Les Miles thought about adapting offensively

As Les Miles officially made his return to college football Sunday, when Kansas named him its next head coach, Miles insisted during his introductory press conference his time away from the sidelines included plenty of reflection about how his old LSU offenses operated. By Benton Smith

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Bill Self: Les Miles a 'home-run hire' with credentials 'off the charts'

“I’m excited. I think everybody who supports us should be excited,” Bill Self said of Les Miles signing a five-year contract to take over the KU football program. By Benton Smith

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'Spectacular' KU football fans greet Les Miles for first 'Hawk Talk'

Miles expects KU to have 15 players in 2019 signing class

When new University of Kansas football coach Les Miles emerged from the kitchen inside Johnny’s Tavern West on Sunday night, approximately 350 fans welcomed him to Lawrence with 30 seconds worth of cheers and applause.

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New KU football coach Les Miles wants to finish career with 'championships'

Two weeks after Jeff Long first stood in Hadl Auditorium and detailed what he hoped to accomplish in his Kansas football coaching search, the first-year athletic director returned Sunday night with an old colleague in tow. Just as the buzz throughout the past several days indicated he would, Long introduced Les Miles as KU’s 39th football coach, presenting his new high-profile employee with one of Miles’ signature white baseball caps — except this one came with a KU logo instead of LSU. By Benton Smith

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It's official: Les Miles becomes KU's next head football coach

A Kansas football program mired in a decade-long spiral that led to national irrelevance and growing local indifference now has a head coach charged with, as the man hiring him would say, breaking that cycle. So long, Louisiana. Les Miles is headed to Lawrence. By Benton Smith

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Notebook: KU coaching search was hot topic on national stage

Norman, Okla. — Before Saturday night’s nationally televised matchup between Kansas and No. 6 Oklahoma on FOX, analyst Dave Wannstedt discussed all the buzz surrounding KU’s coaching search.

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