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Sunday, July 17, 2005

Football sanctions livable

Mangino was slowing flow of juco transfers

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What effect, Kansas University football fans are wondering, will self-imposed sanctions have on coach Mark Mangino's program?

The harshest punishments announced Friday were the loss of one scholarship for each of the next two recruiting seasons, as well as a limit on the number of two-year junior-college transfers Mangino can add.

The first penalty, although not desirable, can be swallowed. The second seems more harsh, yet may not turn out to be all that damaging.

"If you notice what Mangino and his staff have done, the juco transfers have been cut down each year," said Jon Kirby, who covers Kansas recruiting for rivals.com. "If he can continue to take three juco kids that all get in there at semester ... if the trend stays true to what he's proven, I don't see it being a big deal."

Kansas self-reported eight violations within the football program, most having to do with improper academic assistance for prospective junior-college transfers in the summer of 2003, when at least seven were taking correspondence classes in an attempt to gain eligibility.

With the margin for error tight, the key will be to make sure the three juco players KU brings in make an immediate impact.

In 2002-03 -- Mangino's first complete recruiting season at KU -- the Jayhawks signed 14 juco transfers, but the majority either didn't play in Lawrence or didn't finish the season.

Mangino's jucos

The 27 players signed by Kansas University out of two-year colleges in the last three years:

2002-03 (14): Lyonel Anderson, Markeith Childress, Richard Estrella, Rodney Fowler, Marcus Hicks, Chuck Jones, John McCoy, Zach Mims, Shelton Simmons, Gabriel Toomey, Phil Tuihalamaka, Johnny Urrutia, Monroe Weekley, Joe Vaughn.

2003-04 (6): Jermial Ashley, Theo Baines, Rodney Harris, Charlton Keith, Matt Mann, Jason Swanson.

2004-05 (7): Rodney Allen, Marcus Anderson, Paul Como, Jake Cox, Brian Murph, Eric Washington, Wayne Wilder.

KU signed just six jucos in 2003-04, but among them were impact players like Jermial Ashley, Rodney Harris, Charlton Keith, Jason Swanson and Theo Baines. The 2004-05 class had eight juco transfers, but only one needed the spring semester to complete his junior-college work.

Kansas coaches seem confident that midseason juco transfers -- those who earn their associate's degree in December and enroll at KU in January -- are ideal from an athletic standpoint.

Academics may have just been added to the list.

"He's been very successful at getting kids in the door that are semester kids," Kirby said of Mangino. "I think that the taking away of the juco players really, in the long term, may not be that big of a deal."

¢ Gordon, Reid tapped: The Big 12 Conference media voted on the All-Big 12 preseason team this past week. KU cornerback Charles Gordon and linebacker Nick Reid each made the list, which was released Saturday.

Reid joined Oklahoma's Rufus Alexander and Texas' Aaron Harris at linebacker, while four defensive backs were picked -- Gordon, Nebraska's Daniel Bullocks, Texas' Michael Huff and Texas A&M;'s Jaxson Appel.

¢ Arrowhead update: Athletic department personnel are shoulder-deep in preparation for the Oct. 15 game against Oklahoma at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Mo.

Associate athletics director Brandon Macneill said two updates had emerged: It will cost $20 to park at Arrowhead that day, with the possibility of some $15 lots to open on game day; and student season-ticket packages will include a ticket for the Oklahoma game.

Macneill said KU wasn't expecting a large student crowd, however, because many students will be out of town for fall break.

¢ Big 12 Media Days: Mangino and three players -- Reid, Gordon and offensive lineman David Ochoa -- will travel Tuesday to Houston to participate in the Big 12 Conference's annual Media Days.

Kansas, Colorado, Iowa State and Texas A&M; will be featured on Tuesday, the first day of the three-day event.

KU will hold its own Media Day on Aug. 11 at Memorial Stadium.

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