A Les Miles' recruiting tracker, Tony Hull staying or going and more in today's "Ask Us Anything"
Hey, KU fans. After a wild week and a crazy Sunday, it’s time for another edition of “Ask Us Anything,” and what better way to kick things off than by starting with a Les Miles question?
Miles, you surely know by now, was officially introduced as the newest Kansas football coach on Sunday evening.
The response from the KU fan base has been overwhelmingly positive and there is a real feeling around the program that Miles will be the guy to finally get things going in the right direction again.
Kansas does, of course, close out the 2018 season with Texas at home on Friday. And even though the Longhorns are on the verge of playing for a Big 12 title, one more strong effort from the home team — like they showed at K-State and at Oklahoma — could be just what Miles and company need to hit the ground running and capitalize on some on-field momentum for a change.
Even though the opportunity to really make it count won’t arrive until next September, a strong finish, win or lose, could go a long way toward setting the tone for the offseason ahead.
Beyond that, the Jayhawks have a cool opportunity to be doubly energized in this one, playing hard to honor David Beaty on his way out and maybe just a little harder to show Les Miles they’re happy to have him.
We’ll see what happens. While we wait, here’s this week’s first “Ask Us Anything.”
This is such a good question because it cuts to the core of what will define whether Miles is successful at Kansas.
We know the man knows football and we know he can coach talent. But can he get that talent at a place like Kansas?
He sure seems confident in his ability to do so and it sounds like he’s going to jump on it right away. Getting his coordinators in place quickly is a high priority so Miles and his new staff — or at least the most crucial parts of it — can get out and start pitching players to join the 2019 class.
The early signing period arrives Dec. 19 and we’re now roughly 20 hours removed from the end of Miles’ introductory presser.
I won’t break it down to hours, but I’ll say Miles and company have their first KU commitment by Sunday. Maybe more than one.
I get the reason behind this question, but I’m not seeing it.
Could KU Chancellor Doug Girod be a little more aggressive with his comments and/or actions about the ongoing issues surrounding the FBI and NCAA investigation into corruption in college basketball?
But would it behoove him to do so? Probably not. Girod and the Jayhawks have been cooperating fully with the feds from the very beginning and there’s no reason to think that they won’t give the NCAA the same courtesy and respect.
For one, they have to. In some ways the fate of the program — at least as it pertains to any fallout from this latest mess — is in the NCAA’s hands.
Beyond that, it just makes sense to do it that way. The easier KU makes it on the NCAA, the better the chances are that the NCAA will be a little more understanding of the whole picture here.
So, no, I don’t think it makes Girod look like an idiot to wait for direction from the NCAA, I think it makes him look wise.
Having said that, I do think KU, if it wanted to, could begin looking into its own internal investigation of the recruiting practices and problematic things that brought KU into the heart of the college hoops trial. But that’s another question altogether and could be something Kansas plans to get to after the NCAA has its turn.
Time will tell.
Good point about Vick’s recent highs being followed by some pretty memorable lows. But this, to me, feels different.
It’s clear, even though it’s only been three games, that Vick understands his place on this team and how important his veteran status is. This team has absolutely needed someone to take the bull by the horns in the past couple of games and Vick, through his play and personality, has done that to perfection.
That kind of result from Vick making a move that many weren’t sure he could even make surely will add to his confidence and leave the KU senior feeling better than ever about his all-around game.
I loved how Vick used the words, “extreme confidence” after the Louisiana game when asked about his mindset right now. And I’m sure that he’s ready to keep that rolling from here.
It will be interesting to see how he fares in New York City, given the fact that it’s a slightly bigger stage in a big time environment and Vick no-showed in the season opener in a similar setting.
But I think he’ll play well. I’ve never believed that Vick was one to back down from the bright lights and after the way he’s played these past two games, I would think he’ll be all the more ready for them in Brooklyn.
The more he puts quality outings together now — with consistency on both ends leading the way — the more likely it is that he’ll be able to sustain it into Big 12 play and beyond this time around.
I make one comment about how Dedric Lawson could go for 40 against Michigan State and I’ve got people out there who won’t let me live it down.
I know it was a bit ridiculous to throw the 40-spot out there for a guy who had never played a regular season game for the Jayhawks, but he was 5-of-18 in that game and still finished with 21. Imagine if he had made just four more shots — therein shooting 50 percent from the floor — and climbed into the 30s.
Anyway, I don’t know Lawson’s vertical but I know it’s not among the best on the team. It doesn’t need to be. The Memphis transfer is not the type of scorer who jumps over people and puts highlights on film. He’s more of an efficient scorer who quietly but surely puts together pretty solid games even when it doesn’t seem like it.
And he needs to start becoming more efficient and get out of his own head a little bit. As soon as he does that, things will become easier for him and the scoring will come. This guy’s too good to stay in a funk for too long.
Lawson today reminds me a little of Malik Newman during the first couple months of last season. It took him a while to get going, he had a little trouble finding his place and getting comfortable, but once he did, there was no looking back.
If I’m the one making the call, he does. And if you’re asking me if I think he will, I do. In fact, I don’t think there’s much question about it.
Miles said Sunday that he was open to retaining members of the current staff and Hull, the running backs coach and associate head coach from New Orleans with all of those Louisiana connections, is the most obvious and logical assistant to keep.
He played an enormous role in bring Pooka Williams and Co Harris to town — along with a few other Louisianimals — and should vibe great with Miles’ philosophy and system.
Hull’s a laid back, easy-going type of guy who does not have trouble getting along with anyone. Given a chance to sell himself as an important piece of KU’s future, which Miles will do, it’s easy to see Hull making a good first impression and sticking around town.
Miles said Sunday that he did not know Hull personally but he knew of him and admired his production and reputation from his days recruiting New Orleans back at LSU.
Crazier things have happened, but I’ll be very surprised if Hull’s not a part of Miles’ staff at Kansas.
Email question from "LLFrost"
Why do so many “fans” leave the KU Men’s basketball games early? Close game, blowout, early game, late game makes no difference…the expensive seats are more than half empty by the end of the game. Is there anything that can help them stay? And in a related question; Just how few student seats can the athletic dept. provide for basketball games before it turns the best home court advantage into a blasting recorded music, half empty parody of what it used to be?
These are tricky to answer because I have to speak for thousands of people to do it. But I have a couple of thoughts.
The leaving early part is easy to me and you don’t have to like it. But the reason so many do leave early is to get a jump on traffic and get home to get to bed. Remember, not everyone who attends KU’s home games lives in Lawrence. A lot of people have to drive, some great distances, to cheer on the Jayhawks so it makes sense for them to want to get home before midnight. Especially with KU playing so many 7 and 8 p.m. games.
I get why that doesn’t excite the die-hard fans who stay to the very end no matter what, but I’m willing to give these folks a break. As for what can keep them around, a close game is probably the best answer.
And regarding your question about student seating, I know KU takes that issue very seriously and does not want to do anything to limit the number of student seats avaiable.
In fact, during a recent story I wrote about a reorganization of some of the sections, associate athletic director Jim Marchiony said, “...as always, we will accommodate every student that wants to attend a game...” and I believe him.
I haven’t seen the full reports, but I have heard rumblings that student attendance has steadily gone down during the past 5-10 years. Not drastically, but going down is the opposite of going up and if trends show that those seats aren’t going to be filled by students, it makes perfect business sense for Kansas Athletics to try to fill them with people who will cough up some cash to get them.