Improved Kansas secondary faces difficult test vs. Baylor receivers


Baylor wide receiver Denzel Mims (15) catches a pass before Kansas cornerback Hasan Defense (13) during the second quarter on Saturday, Sept. 4, 2017 at Memorial Stadium.

Baylor wide receiver Denzel Mims (15) catches a pass before Kansas cornerback Hasan Defense (13) during the second quarter on Saturday, Sept. 4, 2017 at Memorial Stadium. by Nick Krug

The Kansas secondary played exceptionally well during the nonconference portion of the schedule.

The Jayhawks have allowed 5.1 yards per pass attempt, a figure that ranks them 11th nationally. They have allowed one touchdown pass and have seven interceptions, three returned for touchdowns.

You have to do a whole lot right to compile numbers that exceptional against any level of competition. Still, nobody is in denial that the defensive backs’ jobs are three days from becoming a great deal more difficult.

Nicholls State, Central Michigan and Rutgers all lack the same thing: A passing attack. The three schools have combined to throw five touchdown passes and 15 interceptions. Subtract the numbers against KU and it computes to four TD passes and eight picks. In contrast, Baylor has thrown six touchdown passes and two interceptions.

The Bears always flood the field with a blend of long, fast receivers and shorter, fleet receivers. Tennessee transfer Jalan Hurd, a converted running back, is 6-foot-4, 217 pounds. Junior Denzel Mims is 6-3, 208. Explosive freshman Tyquan Thornton is 6-3, 165, and Marques Jones is 6-2, 204. Chris Platt is only 5-11, but his speed makes him a deep threat as well. It will be interesting to see how true freshman cornerback Corione Harris, coming off an outstanding effort that included an interception vs. Rutgers, fares against Baylor’s size. At 6-1, 180, Harris has good size for a cornerback.

“I really like the Mims kid,” Kansas coach David Beaty said. “I think Mims is, I think he might be the best receiver in the league and there's a bunch of good ones in this league. … This league is full of terrific receivers. And it's hard to choose one. But Mims stands out to me. He's a playmaker. He's big. He's fast. He makes plays. I think he's got perfect size, good length. I know he didn't play last week, but competitors like that, you know they get well. He'll be out there Saturday, I'm sure.”

Beaty, who enjoys breaking down receivers, having played and coached the position for so many years, shared his thoughts on more than just Mims.

“They have the Jalen Hurd kid who transferred from Tennessee,” Beaty said. “He was a running back. He's reshaped his body. I think he's lost 20, 25 pounds, certainly looks like a wide receiver now. Has really worked on his craft. Possesses a lot of skill, a lot of skill. They hand him the ball off in the backfield a couple times and he can still certainly do that. He's got terrific vision.”

Beaty said of Platt: “I was hoping he'd graduate and move on. But he's still there. And he's a track guy that can really run and I've listened to Matt talk a lot about how unselfish he is.”

Baylor has had 19 passing plays of 20 yards or more, compared to just four for Kansas, which gets most of its explosive plays from its running game.

“They have the ability to make a big play at any time, but we're going to have to prepare well this week because I'm not sure we've seen a group of guys like this put together,” Beaty said. “This is a pretty strong group of wideouts.”


[''] 9 months ago

The secondary is better because Perry isn't coaching them anymore. And -- special teams blows now guessed it.

Bryson Stricker 9 months ago

Special Teams blows?

You know it's not Perry's fault that the line let someone walk through right? The bad snap/hold is on Perry tho.

this ST unit is better than any Kansas has put out in a decade.

Congrats on being able to find a way to turn this negatively tho. props to you!

Dirk Medema 9 months ago

There have been some blunders this year, but as a whole, isn't ST also better than last year? Oooops, forgot that would require thinking and analysis.

You must be absolutely boiling without the group P&Moan sessions.

[''] 9 months ago

Hahaha. Riiiiiigggghhhttt.....

Bryson Stricker 9 months ago

you're getting better at recognizing when you're wrong.

[''] 9 months ago

So ST screwups aren't Perry's fault unless they are??? Get on your tin foil hat telepathy and soup can line with Beaty and get this straightened out.

Jeff Coffman 9 months ago

The secondary will get tested this week. One of the QBs was a true freshman and the other was a Sophomore early in the season. Granted the team did well, a mix of pressure and scheme, but we'll be able to evaluate better how the season will go after a trip to a young and inexperienced Baylor Team. I believe last year, they had a significant amount of Freshman, this year they likely have a Sophomore laden starting group.

David Kemp 9 months ago

Looking at Duke secondary, they did ok with 1 fr 1 so 2 juniors and 1 senior in secondary so level of experience no better than ours. Just avoid getting ripped by those flanker screens they run all the time

Dirk Medema 9 months ago


That is the one disconcerting thing about the D-stats; lack of sacks and TFL. Oh to have Dorance one more year.

Ray Winger 9 months ago

We don't have sacks and TFL's , because the other team is scared and throwing interceptions before we get to them!

Randy Bombardier 9 months ago

Not to worry. When we run off the clock and keep them off the field they will get out of rhythm. If we keep running, bleeding the clock and scoring by the third quarter thus will turn to panic.

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