All three quarterbacks still have shot to win job


Kansas quarterback Miles Kendrick drops back to throw as he is protected by Kansas offensive lineman Antione Frazier (75) and Kansas offensive lineman Larry Hughes (73) during an open practice on Saturday, April 28, 2018 at Memorial Stadium.

Kansas quarterback Miles Kendrick drops back to throw as he is protected by Kansas offensive lineman Antione Frazier (75) and Kansas offensive lineman Larry Hughes (73) during an open practice on Saturday, April 28, 2018 at Memorial Stadium. by Nick Krug

Fourth-year Kansas football coach David Beaty gave no indication during the 15-practice spring session as to the identity of the starting quarterback this coming fall.

A look at Beaty's first three seasons on the job doesn't help narrow it down much because he has had a tendency to change his mind more than once during the course of the season.

In his first season, Beaty used three different starting quarterbacks in a three-week span. Montell Cozart started in Week 2, Deondre Ford started in Week 3, back to Cozart in Week 4 and Ryan Willis in Week 5.

Willis set the Beaty-coached record for most consecutive starts by getting the call in the final eight weeks of the 2015 season, but then Beaty switched back to Cozart to start the 2016 season. In two different stints as the starter, Cozart had seven starts in 2016, Carter Stanley three and Wills two.

So whatever Beaty saw in games Willis that made him start the final eight games of the 2015 season wasn't as powerful as whatever the coach saw during the offseason that made him switch back to Cozart to start the 2016 season.

Peyton Bender, who started eight games last season, Stanley, who started four, and newcomer Miles Kendrick, who spent one semester at junior college out of high school, all have legitimate chances to win the job during the summer.

Year Quarterback
Com-Att TD-Int Pct. Yds. YPA Rating

2015 Ryan Willis 164-315 8-10 52.1 1,719 5.5 99.9 8 8
2015 Montell Cozart 66-105 2-1 62.9 752 7.2 127.4 4 2
2015 Deondre Ford 11-23 0-1 47.8 132 5.7 87.3 1 1
2016 Cozart 112-191 7-9 58.6 1,075 5.6 108.6 7 4
2016 Carter Stanley 93-156 6-6 59.6 959 6.1 116.3 3 3
2016 Willis
72-117 3-7 61.5 811 6.9 116.3 2 2
2017 Peyton Bender 148-273 10-10 54.2 1,609 5.9 108.5 8 7
2017 Stanley 101-185 4-7 54.6 1,108 6.0 104.5 4 4


Kevin Robert Fest 3 years ago

Same story as last year. I fear the same results. Doesn't matter who starts the season, Beaty is a fan of the revolving door mentality when it comes to quarterbacks.

Last year Bender would get them inside the red zone then for some unexplained reason Stanley would come in, probably for scrambling purposes. But what does that do to a quarterbacks confidence. Let's face it they are both subpar but pick one stick with one.

Bryson Stricker 3 years ago

That happened exactly twice, all season.

Kevin Robert Fest 3 years ago

Perhaps the o line had too many false starts because each quarterback uses a different cadence, or perhaps receivers drop balls because each qb throws a little different. Just when you get comfortable with one, another comes in.

It's detrimental to the whole team.

John Fitzgerald 3 years ago

My vote is for Miles. We know what Stanley and Bender can give us, now let’s see what Miles can give us.

Chris DeWeese 3 years ago

Exactly. What do we have to lose?

[''] 3 years ago

Marcus took the words out of my mouth -- when you have 3 starting QBs, that means you have zero QB's worth starting....

Richard Duran 3 years ago

So The gReat Talent Evaluator Recruiting Guru strikes again! I think Beatty's trying to get fired. How else do you explain Starks sitting on the bench during double digit losing streaks? Anyone coaching for his job would have given Starks a chance! Mangino gritted his teeth and pulled off Reesings red shirt and look what happened! When you're in the middle of an 11 game losing streak what have you got to lose? Gutless Wonder should have been canned last season.

Bryson Stricker 3 years ago

Great Talent Evaluator and Great Recruiting Guru are not mutually exclusive.

David Beaty has far surpassed what a 3-33 coach should be able to recruit. His talent evaluation has been average at best but the underlying problem we all have is lack of development. Either the talent evaluation is worse than imagined ( i dont think so) or it truly is his lack of development.

We are out recruiting "great recruiters" at schools doing far better than us. To say David Beaty hasn't succeeded in that area is just downright wrong.

Titus Canby 3 years ago

Starks played in the spring game of 2017. He threw several helicopter passes. Possibly the worst passer I've ever seen. He might have been a good running back or wide receiver, but not a QB.

Brett McCabe 3 years ago

And he was given a scholarship, why? Because he was a quarterback who couldn't throw? We couldn't evaluate that? Because we had a huge availability of scholarships to toss out on developmental projects at the QB position?

Jim Stauffer 3 years ago

Hit a guy for a touchdown though!

Raymond Wright 3 years ago

And then Reesing didn't play again the rest of that season. I know everyone wants to think Mangino was the greatest coach ever but I remember those years.

Jim Stauffer 3 years ago

I agree with part of these comments. We have heard Starks had difficulty learning the offense. Well those who learned it were getting little done. Maybe his athleticism would have provided a spark. There was nothing to lose. I think this staff should know now what they plan to do with this offense. Therefore they should know who has the best package of ability to lead that offense. Put him in now and get him all the reps he needs to instill confidence in all his teammates. I do hope the QB choice is made by the OC and any changes due to performance are his choice.

Chris DeWeese 3 years ago

I'm not sure I know the whole story regarding Ryan Willis, but I thought I saw a lot of potential when he started during his freshman year. He showed grit and toughness. Naturally, I expected him to build on that during his sophomore year. When Beaty went with Cozart again in 2016 I just about came unglued. I don't know if either Willis or Cozart would have improved much if Beaty had made a decision to start one and stick with it, but one thing that is apparent to me is the lack of development in any of our QBs (including Stanley). From season to season, they all put up fairly similar numbers. Now with Willis at VT and battling for a starting role, it makes me think Beaty didn't know what he had and certainly didn't know what to do with him. Now it's apparent none of our QBs give us a clear chance at consistently winning because there's been no consistency.

John Brazelton 3 years ago

If KU had have a Big 12 Caliber offensive line when Willis was the quarter back, he would still be here. Unfortunately, he primarily a passer and when the offensive line coverage broke down just like Bender, he was exposed. Let's hope the weak link this season becomes a capable part of the team.

Joe Ross 3 years ago

I think I saw it above, expressed similarly. If Miles Kendrick hasn't separated himself from Stanley and Bender, then he is in the same class. This means he's not good enough. This may or may not be fair, admittedly. It might just be that we don't have the staff in place to develop talent. Look at Cozart...

Dirk Medema 3 years ago

Joe - Do you really think Cozart did that much better with different coaches or was he just surrounded by better players and asked to do far less. He was just a situational player. No one has ever said he wasn't a good player. Just not good enough to be a D1 starter which was also true at BSU.

As for Willis- he was quite a bit of his own undoing when he hurt his hand playing ref BB IIRC, and then through 7 ints in less than 2 games. That's not going to win much but some how that escapes so many memories.

Brad Sherp 3 years ago

When Beaty is gone and we look back at his tenure, I think the thing that will stick out the most to me is his inability to develop or even pick QBs. The Beaty era has been one long, never-ending QB controversy because he has never been able to commit to a QB. It may be because he was so bad at developing/evaluating them that none of them had the skills to be good at their job, but that also falls on Beaty's shoulders.

Dane Pratt 3 years ago

If Miles is at par with his competition I'd rather see him get the start. We've pretty much seen the ceiling from Bender and Stanley. Let's see what his upside is.

Mike Bennett 3 years ago

Here we go again with articles on the QB's. The LJW clearly has paid no attention to the actual product on the field. THE QB's ARE NOT THE PROBLEM. KU could win with any of the QB's if they had talent around them. They do not. Bad O-line, midget and/or slow receivers=bad QB play. Quit asking the QB's to make chicken salad out of chicken _ and just let them be QB's and KU would be fine.

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