Notesblog: Heaps still looking, recruiting about to pick up and more talent on the way?
A couple of quick notes and newsy items while we continue to wait for the outcome of senior quarterback Jake Heaps' decision whether to stay at Kansas or go play elsewhere...
• It's been pretty quiet on the Heaps front for the past few weeks but the more people I've talked to about the situation, the more I'm believing Heaps will in fact leave KU.
A couple of schools that were rumored to be his next landing spot when reports of his potential transfer first came out have been crossed off the list for various reasons, but at least a couple remain, with the University of Miami, Fla., being, by far, the biggest name and a couple of other smaller schools maybe still in the running.
Heaps, a senior-to-be who is within striking distance of graduating this summer, would be eligible to play immediately at his new school if he chooses to leave Kansas because of the same senior-transfer rule that brought Dayne Crist and others to KU during the past couple of seasons.
Heaps has to graduate before becoming eligible immediately, however, so it's likely that that's the hold-up in this whole deal.
There's still an outside shot that he could remain at KU and battle to be an incredibly valuable back-up to sophomore starter Montell Cozart, but provided some other school and coach out there is willing to give him an opportunity to compete to be a starter, I'd be surprised if he stayed.
• I saw on Twitter last week that former KU wide receiver Ishmael Hyman is transferring to James Madison University and will be eligible to play immediately because of JMU's status as an FCS program.
Its official after deciding to transfer from KU, I will be attending and playing football for JMU this upcoming season! #GoDukes 🐶👑— Ish Hyman (@HollyWood_Ish13) June 3, 2014
Hyman's departure from KU caught many fans by surprise and disappointed several people who had high hopes for the 6-foot, 170-pound receiver from Manalapan, N.J.
Hyman has talent and is sort of a natural play-maker, but it seems like the situation at JMU, which is located in Harrisonburg, Va., fits him much better than KU did. He red-shirted in 2013 and was removed from the Kansas roster just before spring practices a couple of months ago.
• This weekend figures to be a big weekend for KU's Class of 2015 recruiting efforts.
Thus far, KU has just one commitment in the class (Bishop Miege quarterback Ryan Willis) but that could change in a hurry after this weekend.
Somewhere around a half dozen junior-college prospects are expected to make their official visits to KU over the weekend — a move that's allowed under the new recruiting rules — and a couple of them seem to be just waiting to see campus and the football facilities before making their decisions official.
Defensive tackle Jacky Dezir (6-foot-3, 305 pounds from the College of DuPage) and offensive tackle Jarek Smalley (6-6, 315, Garden City C.C.) both are very high on KU and could be in line to pick the Jayhawks by the end of the weekend.
• Speaking of recruiting, there's been plenty of message board activity during recent weeks about KU potentially adding a couple of late pick-ups to the roster in time for the 2014 season. I don't have a clue who those players might be, if they exist at all, but it would not surprise me for a second if KU coach Charlie Weis found a couple of diamonds in the rough somewhere and brought them to Kansas for the upcoming season.
You know the deal with Weis by now.... He's always on the lookout for talent and the bottom line with this kind of thing is this: If Weis believes a guy can help the program and can make a positive impact on the field right away, he'll search high and low for a way to bring that guy to Lawrence.
We'll see if anything materializes, but, if it does, my best guess is that any newcomers might play wide receiver or on the offensive line.
• Former KU wide receivers coach Darrell Wyatt is out at Texas, a coaching casualty of the Mack Brown movement in the offseason.
Wyatt, who enjoyed two stints at KU before spending the past three years at Texas as the Longhorns' wide receivers coach, is rumored to be in line to become a candidate for the offensive coordinator opening at North Carolina. Wyatt previously served as the offensive coordinator for current UNC head coach Larry Fedora, when the two were together at Southern Miss in 2008-09.
• And, finally, in case you missed it yesterday or earlier today, offensive lineman Joe Gibson, a former walk-on from Rockhurst High who red-shirted in 2013, was given a scholarship for the 2014 season on Monday afternoon.