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Say something nice about Kansas Football: Jayhawks in middle of Big 12 pack for Class of 2017 recruiting

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Kansas cornerbacks coach Kenny Perry shakes hands with officials at Southlake, Texas.

Kansas cornerbacks coach Kenny Perry shakes hands with officials at Southlake, Texas. by Richard Gwin

It’s too depressing to look behind to see where Kansas ranks in various Big 12 football categories. So why not look ahead? It will brighten the mood.

Rivals.com ranks Kansas fifth among 10 Big 12 teams in Class of 2017 recruiting thus far and 42nd in the nation.

Big 12 teams with national recruiting rankings for the Class of 2017: 5. Oklahoma, 24. (tie) Iowa State and Oklahoma State, 32. Texas Tech, 42. Kansas, 44. TCU, 46. Texas, 57. West Virginia, 66. Kansas State, 94. Baylor.

Aside from the encouraging ranking for Kansas, two interesting elements of the rankings jump out. First, Iowa State obviously made a great hire in wooing Matt Campbell from Toledo, where he went 35-15. Second, Baylor’s recruiting has taken a huge hit in the wake of the rape scandal and subsequent firing of head coach Art Briles.

Rivals lists a dozen verbal commitments — not counting those who then changed their minds — including one four-star recruit and seven three-star commitments.

Four-star: Michael Lee, DB, New Orleans, 5-foot-10, 162 pounds.

Three-star: Akayleb Evans, DB, McKinney, Texas, 6-2, 180; Troy James, DE, Baton Rouge, La., 6-4, 268; Travis Jordan, ATH, Marrero, La., 6-1, 185; Reggie Roberson, WR, Mesquite, Texas, 6-0, 175; Jamie Tago, DE, Garden City, 6-3, 245; Robert Topps, DB, Chicago, 6-2, 182; Dominic Williams, RB, Dallas, 5-9, 186.

Two-star: Jay Dineen, LB, Lawrence, 6-2, 225; Kyron Johnson, LB, Arlington, Texas, 6-1, 195; Takulve Williams, WR, New Orleans, 5-11, 180.

It won’t be easy for Kansas to keep all 12 recruits because it’s common for football recruits to change their minds when more established programs come knocking, but it’s an impressive list nonetheless, although an incomplete one because it’s so early.

A pair of highly rated Texas offensive linemen had committed to KU only to change their minds, so work needs to be done to recruit more high school blockers in order to break the cycle of relying on junior college O-linemen, never a sound strategy.

First-year running backs coach Tony Hull has opened up Louisiana for Kansas and his reputation already is paying off. Meanwhile, head coach David Beaty and cornerbacks coach Kenny Perry to continue to tap their Texas ties for talent.

At defensive end, Anthony Olobia and Damani Mosby both are seniors, so the need for immediate help made it necessary to land a junior college recruit. Tago, who plays at Garden City Community College, is the only junior college recruit among the 12 committed recruits.

Recruiting clearly is on the gradual uptick at Kansas. There, I said something nice about Kansas football, yet again. Your turn. Deliver.

Comments

David Robinett 1 year ago

Is our relatively good ranking due to it being so early combined with the fact we offer kids earlier? That is to say the usual powerhouses rankings will pass us later as they add recruits.

Tom Keegan 1 year ago

Partly, yes. For example, nobody will back out of Texas and commit to Kansas, but it's still encouraging.

Dirk Medema 1 year ago

Looking at the numbers, part of the ranking is the relative size of the class so far. We're basically half way full at this point, but if you look at the relative quality of the players (Total pts / # of commits), we're 9th out of 10 (63.75, ahead of KSU at 55). There is a flaw to this analysis also in that BU has 1 commit at 90 pts, which is the 4th best points per commit in the class so far.

By further comparison, TCU and UT are 1 and 16 pts behind us, but because they have 4 and 5 less players, their per commit rankings are actually 3 and 2 respectively. On the other hand ISU and OSU are high because they have 16 and 15 commits, though their per commit rankings are 8 (65.6) and 7 (70) respectively. Based on those numbers, I wouldn't say that Matt Campbell has done such a great job at ISU. He's quickly filled a P5 recruiting class, but when the other classes fill he is more than likely still at the bottom of the conference.

Just the numbers.

David Robinett 1 year ago

Hopefully those Louisiana boys will form a bond together and with KU that will make them more resistant to re- recruiting.

Tom Keegan 1 year ago

They know that Tony Hull will be right there for them for any struggles to college football/life/homesickness. It seems to me your hope is not unrealistic.

Doug Cramer 1 year ago

Progress

The coaches know that this ride will be thrilling with organic progress and performance. Bringing a program from the dead, and making it competitive again.

Keep Sawin Wood KU Football !

Michael Maris 1 year ago

I have to say, Iowa State's head coach and staff really have made a difference. However, their ranking is based on the amount of commitments that they've received to date. So, their ranking will probably change as the recruiting season gets closer to actual signing date.

Rock Chalk!

1 year ago

Very impressed with the job Beaty and company have done thus far on the recruiting trail. It'll have it's peaks and valleys over the course of the season, but to have this many recruits before most of their senior seasons have even begun is pretty remarkable. It's still probably going to be another 6 or 7 years before KU becomes relevant again. As Doug said, keep sawin' wood.

Aaron Paisley 1 year ago

Iowa State's ranking is going to start sliding before long because they don't have much room left and a lot of teams behind have a lot fewer commitments and will jump ISU.

Tom Keegan 1 year ago

I think whatever is said about Iowa State's class potentially can be said about KU's, although Tony Hull seems to really inspire loyalty.

Michael Lorraine 1 year ago

Not sure if it matters what KSU’s ranking is but at what point does Bill Snyder’s age become a detriment to recruiting.

Dirk Medema 1 year ago

The point when he becomes completely petrified?

If it's not a positive comment, but is about those guys, is that like a negative multiplied by a negative is a positive, or 2 wrongs don't make a right, though 3 lefts can.

Michael Maris 1 year ago

I would not be surprised if K-State replaces Coach Snyder with Brent Venables. I have always kind of felt it with Venables even being at Oklahoma, would end up the HC @ K-State. And when, he took the Clemson job, my thoughts on Venables being named HC @ K-State became even stronger (once Coach Snyder decides to hang up his coaching whistle and trade in his Nike Cortez tennis shoes for house slippers).

Michael Lorraine 1 year ago

I agree, Venables would be near the top of their list but he’s always said he wants his son to succeed him. I think if he wanted the job to go to Larry the cable guy the KSU admin would be obliged to do so.

He’s created quite a coaching tree but some would not want the job for fear of following a legend and others would turn it down over concerns that a head coaching job in Manhattan has a ceiling. In spite of the way Jim Leavitt was kicked out of South Florida I have to think he would be on the short list. It will be interesting to see who they hire.

Dirk Medema 1 year ago

A sign our coaches are evaluating well: former commit OL Grant Polley recently moved into the ESPN 300. Stinks that we couldn't keep him, but things will continue to improve if they keep that up.

Michael Maris 1 year ago

Yes, I think that Coach Beaty & Staff are the right people to get the Jayhawk's football program turned around. It's obviously going to take some time. But, Coach Beaty seems to have a really good sense of hiring the ''Right'' Guys to fit the coaching philosophy he has. I tend to always be more optimistic than pessimistic about total wins for the season. I can see a 3 or 4 win season being a real possibility this coming season. But as always, time will most certainly tell.

Michael Maris 1 year ago

I was driving home yesterday (from work) and listened to Tom Hedrick on 101.1 ESPN Radio. It was a real treat to listen to. If you care to listen to the podcast, I've pasted the link below.

http://www.101sports.com/shows/the-fast-lane-2/ and look for the Tom Hedrick interview.

I think you all will enjoy this.

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