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Kansas defensive line coach Jesse Williams liked discipline he saw during recruiting visit to KU

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Kansas defensive line coach Jesse Williams flashes a smile during spring football practice on Thursday, March 30, 2017.

Kansas defensive line coach Jesse Williams flashes a smile during spring football practice on Thursday, March 30, 2017. by Nick Krug

First-year Kansas defensive line coach Jesse Williams didn’t see a strong performance from the Jayhawks when he visited Lawrence last season as part of Frank Solich’s Ohio staff, but he decided to make the move anyway.

Ohio defeated Kansas 37-21 at Memorial Stadium after jumping to a 25-0 lead. Kansas managed just 21 yards in total offense in the first half in that one. The Jayhawks never drew closer than 10 points.

So why did Williams make the move?

“I definitely saw it as a program on the rise,” Williams said during the summer. “When I was able to come on my visit, you saw the discipline. That locker room was pristine. When I was on my visit I toured it three times: before a workout, after a workout, on the tour. Not one time was something on the ground, so you knew there was discipline within the room. You knew there was talent in the room and you knew there were some good coaches in the building. That’s why I felt like it was on the rise.”

That discipline hasn’t shown on the field yet as Kansas continues to turn it over too often and draw costly penalties, but Williams didn’t expect the program to turn around overnight.

Comments

Chris DeWeese 1 week, 2 days ago

I don't know if discipline alone is enough to see marked improvement in our defense. As much as I like the guy, I think it's time to say goodbye to Clint Bowen. His defenses have never been better than mediocre and were often atrocious (despite the fact that several of his players went to the NFL).

Joe Ross 1 week, 2 days ago

I don't know that it's Bowen's fault, just being honest. Maybe it was Tom who said in a podcast the other day--and I agree with him--that Bowen just might be a coach who's good at coaching good players, and our talent level needs to rise to his ability. One could make a good argument that coaching up talent is the sign of a good coach, and one could make ANOTHER argument that says Bowen coached up Armstrong and Wise, so lack of talent is not much of an excuse. But there are still player variables in play. Some players respond to coaching and some dont progress. It's an arguable question at this point, but one that would not be an issue if we were OU or Ohio State or Alabama.

My gut tells me its more lack of talent than Bowen's coaching.

Titus Canby 1 week, 2 days ago

I agree with Joe. As I recall, we had a pretty decent defense a couple of years ago, and even last year. We just lost a lot to graduation after last year - all but one of the starting defensive backfield.

John Gorski 1 week, 2 days ago

"That discipline hasn’t shown on the field yet as Kansas continues to turn it over too often and draw costly penalties, but Williams didn’t expect the program to turn around overnight."

No, not overnight but in year 3 of Beaty's tenure we should be better than what we have shown.

John Fitzgerald 1 week, 2 days ago

I agree with Joe. I don't think firing Bowen or even any coach for that matter is going to fix our issue. We knew coming into this year that our DB's were new to starting or even new to the program and were going to be a big question. Well that question has been answered just not the answer we were looking for. As for the defensive line, Armstrong and Wise just need to get their heads out of their arses and play with a purpose. Our hope for our DB's lies with them pressuring up front. If they can't do that then we're doomed.

Dirk Medema 1 week, 1 day ago

While this is year 3 for Coach Beaty and Co., we're also still a year or 2 away from a full roster due to the coaching turnstile of the past decade - and no it cannot be blamed on on Charlie. He was just the last one that swung for the fences and struck out badly. We were already 25 players short when he started and in danger of having as many ineligible due to the lack of discipline.

We're still a couple years away from a full roster because we started at an FCS level. FCS. There's a reason that was the only competitive game that year and you don't change 85 players in even 3 years. Coach Beaty has done a remarkable job building the roster to where it is now this is really year 1 if comparing the program to any other.

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