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Denzell Evans contributes to Kansas football in special way

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Kansas running back Denzell Evans talks with media members following a Signing Day news conference at the Anderson Family Football Complex.

Kansas running back Denzell Evans talks with media members following a Signing Day news conference at the Anderson Family Football Complex. by Nick Krug

You’ll never see his name on a Kansas football depth chart and probably won’t ever see it in a game story. You will see him give the Jayhawks a better shot at winning football games, provided you watch very closely.

Running back Denzell Evans is entering his second season on the roster after transferring from Arkansas. Used sparingly as a short-yardage back, Evans gained 29 yards in 17 carries last season. It was elsewhere that Evans, No. 23, made his mark and earned the respect of teammates and coaches.

“I played on all the special teams, every single unit,” Evans said with pride. “When we started fall camp I told them I want to do it all, I can do it all. I’m going to say kickoff is my favorite because I’d rather hit somebody than get hit. But whatever they need from me, I’m here to do it all.”

Evans’ position coach during spring football of 2016 was Reggie Mitchell, former Kansas running backs coach.

“He told me I should look into (Kansas) so that’s what led me to come here," Evans said. "He was a big part of it.”

Even though Evans hasn’t been a featured back for KU, he said he doesn’t regret his decision to change addresses as a graduate transfer.

“I love it here,” he said. “I love it, every step of the way. I love it: the atmosphere, the coaches, everybody.”

Having a roster stocked with great talents isn’t a prerequisite for flipping a losing a program. But it is a tough task if the roster isn’t loaded with great attitudes. Evans brings a winning attitude and loves his role as a special teams standout.

Comments

Brett McCabe 4 weeks ago

What an incredible attitude. This kid has success written all over him.

Special teams performance can really be an indicator of roster depth. Evans is a good example. When he announced he was coming to KU, my hope was that he might start in the backfield. The fact that we can have a player of his caliber contributing almost exclusively on special teams shows that we are getting deeper and better.

If you can cover punts and kick-offs effectively, you can 100 yards to the length of the field for the opposing offense during the course of the game. This might be the area that shows the most improvement this year - assuming that we have the right specialists in place.

Clarence Glasse 4 weeks ago

"If you can cover punts and kick-offs effectively, you can 100 yards to the length of the field for the opposing offense during the course of the game."------- ?

Brett McCabe 4 weeks ago

*add. Meaning good coverage makes the field longer. Should have proofed a little more closely.

John Fitzgerald 4 weeks ago

It's always good to hear when players are happy after they've transferred here even if they aren't playing as much as they had hoped. And these are the kind of players Beaty wants and loves, and eventually it'll pay off.

Randy Bombardier 4 weeks ago

Great stuff. It is a great place. Its what we all know, yet maybe we think we're biased. Yes we are but i have seen quite a few campuses and football environments and KU is hard to beat. It is one reason I am so optimistic about trying to recruit those 4 and 5 star kids. Once we get the facility investment and start winning I have no doubt that this time we will start landing much more talent. We finally have a coach who sees it too. Probably a big reason coach Beaty came back.

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