Thursday, October 29, 2009

Reesing, offense stuck in rare rut

Kansas university quarterback Todd Reesing tries to escape from pressure during the first half against Oklahoma on Saturday at Memorial Stadium. Reesing has struggled lately, but will try to regain some swagger on Saturday against Texas Tech in Lubbock, Texas.

Kansas university quarterback Todd Reesing tries to escape from pressure during the first half against Oklahoma on Saturday at Memorial Stadium. Reesing has struggled lately, but will try to regain some swagger on Saturday against Texas Tech in Lubbock, Texas.


KU football defense improving despite losses

KU coach Mark Mangino says the team's defense has been improving this season, despite the two consecutive losses the team has suffered. KU hits the road this weekend to take on the Texas Tech Red Raiders.

It’s a far cry from the “No More Potts!” chant showered upon Texas Tech quarterback Taylor Potts during the Red Raiders’ 52-30 loss to Texas A&M; last week. So that’s good.

But as the quarterback of a Kansas University football team coming off a pair of disappointing losses and a stretch of less-than-stellar offensive play, Todd Reesing has become the face of the team’s recent struggles.

“That’s the nature of the position,” KU offensive coordinator Ed Warinner said Tuesday. “You get a lot of credit, maybe more than you should. And you get a lot of blame, maybe more than you should.”

Lately, it’s been the latter.

In the past two games, both Kansas losses, Reesing has borne the brunt of the blame in a pair of ugly offensive performances. Against Colorado two weeks ago, he fumbled and threw an interception, both of which gave the Buffaloes the ball inside the KU five yard line and both of which led to touchdowns. The following week against Oklahoma, meanwhile, he tossed three first-half interceptions that put Kansas in an early 14-0 hole.

Reesing hasn’t been the only problem, of course. The lack of a consistent defensive effort and a substantial running game has hindered the team greatly over the past two weeks.

But being the quarterback at a Div. I school, there are certain crosses that one bears.

“Things go wrong ... (and) you guys are going to blame him, because he’s the poster boy, if you will, of our offense,” running back Jake Sharp said. “So he takes a lot of extra things that he doesn’t need to take, I think, when things go haywire.

“We did a lot of things that I think put him in bad situations that we as offensive teammates can’t do,” he added.

On Tuesday, Kansas coach Mark Mangino insisted that the recent struggles — though disappointing for his senior quarterback — have done little to shake the player’s spirit.

Reesing still took the practice field on Sunday with the usual bounce in his step, the coach said, and he has been able to avoid letting his recent drop in play affect his preparation for Saturday’s 2:30 p.m. matchup with the Red Raiders in Lubbock, Texas.

“The casual fan can tell by watching him play how competitive he is and how badly he wants to be successful,” Mangino said. “So obviously when things don’t go your way, it hurts, it’s painful. But he’s not the kind of guy who’s going to get down and pout.”

What’s more, he might be in line for a speedy recovery.

A week ago, the Red Raiders gave up 559 yards of offense to Texas A&M;, including 238 through the air, and spent much of the day looking lost on defense.

Based on the fact that Reesing has never had three off-games in a row — until recently, in fact, it was hard to find a two-game stretch in which he was sub-par — teammates don’t seem overly concerned heading into Saturday’s game.

“He’ll bounce back,” assured defensive back Chris Harris. “... I know the type of player he is, I’ve been here with him, and I have total confidence in Todd.”

Tech taps Doege as starter at QB

Texas Tech red-shirt freshman quarterback Seth Doege will start Saturday’s game against Kansas, ESPN reported Wednesday.

Doege, who was 18 for 25 for 146 yards in the team’s loss to Texas A&M;, will start in place of the struggling Taylor Potts, a decision Mangino said wouldn’t significantly alter the Jayhawks’ preparations.

“No matter who the quarterback is, they do a lot of the same things, they’re consistent in what they do,” the coach said. “So I don’t know how big of a difference it makes from our perspective.”

KU Quarterback Club to meet

The KU Quarterback Club will hold its weekly meeting at 5 p.m. today at Buffalo Wild Wings, 1012 Massachusetts St. Jayhawk Radio Network color analyst David Lawrence will be the week’s guest speaker and will be followed by “Hawk Talk with Mark Mangino” at 6 p.m.


David Wanamaker 12 years, 6 months ago

The offensive struggles ARE NOT on Todd. They are on Ed Warinner, who refused to see during the OU game especially that Todd couldn't sit in the pocket and expect to throw perfect passes over huge defensive linemen. Warinner needs to roll Todd out of the pocket where he's got clearer paths to his receivers. Last Saturday, if Todd's passes weren't being batted down, they were sailing past his receivers because he was throwing high to compensate. It ain't Todd's fault; it's Warinner's fault.

Bob Thompson 12 years, 6 months ago

What I have noticed is that Todd isn't running. I don't know if it is his decision, or that other q-backs on other teams have been hurt and staff have told him to stay in the pocket. But his ability to scramble put a lot of pressure on the defense. I am not saying he doesn't scramble, just not near as much as he did.

Rivethead 12 years, 6 months ago

DWINOP - please find me another QB who has successfully scrambled against OU. You won't. The OU DL is by far the best DL in the country. They're way too fast (as are the OU LBs). The vast majority of roll outs would have roll out right into the speedy OU pressure. And besides, that "huge" OU DL is the same size as KU's (the one Todd practices against every day). They're just light years faster and better.

Ed Warriner did not make Todd fumble at CU. Ed Warriner did not step inside Todd's body and make him telegraph a pass to McDougald and then throw a slow floater that even my 80 year old grandmother could have picked. Ed Warriner did not stand there inside Todd's body and watch as the OU DB raced down the field for he score (making no effort to chase after or tackle him).

The last two years Todd has spoiled us with nearly perfect play and an uncanny ability to scramble and make plays. For whatever reason, his decision making has not been as good this year (and not just the last two games....see the 1Q of the UNoCo game, the 4Q of the USM game, etc.).

Personally, I believe it's because of a combination of: he's trying to do too much, he got caught up in his own hype (remember the Reesing for Heisman articles just a few short weeks ago), teams now have plenty of film on him and have adapted to his style of play, and he's just got a little complacent as a Senior.

The good news is that Todd is super smart. He'll adjust. He'll adapt. I just hope he doesn't put so much pressure on himself that he makes the situation worse.

eastcoasthawk 12 years, 6 months ago

I believe it is a combination of Warinner and Todd making mistakes. Sometimes Warinner puts Todd in bad position or doesn't read the D correctly and sometimes Todd has not made the smart play. We are not clicking on all cylinders these days. The part about this article that worries me the most is the Harris quote that no matter who the QB is they do the same things. Funny, but didn't we hear that before the CU game? That is what worries me.

MinnesotaJay 12 years, 6 months ago

I can't explain what's been happening except to say that the performances have been coming in below expectations. But, Todd has contributed waaaay too much to ever throw him under the bus.

Michael Flewelling 12 years, 6 months ago

It looks to me when we change pace and speed up the offense once in a while we have a lot more success. I didn't see that against Oklahoma. Looks like we have become way to predictable. When we run the ball up the middle with Sharp on first down and end up second and long everybody knows what is next.

NebraskaJayhawk 12 years, 6 months ago

Two back set. Get it done. Max, that is the dumbest comment I've read all year.

NebraskaJayhawk 12 years, 6 months ago

My post should have been in the Opurum article, not this one.

mdfraz 12 years, 6 months ago

Ok, I'm a grammar nazi, so here's my comment on that. It's not "Todd has bore" it should be "Todd has born". I'm nitpicking.

As for the substance of the article, no it's not ALL Todd's fault. Warriner seems to have become predictable, and lately, conservative. That's not putting your players in good positions to make big plays and score points. Note how successful we were in the second half against CU when we just let it fly b/c we were behind. There's a fine line btw. being aggressive and out of control; it's hard to find, but that's the O coordinator's job. Personally I think we are not quite aggressive enough.

That said, Todd is the one who has turned the ball over 5 times in the first halves of the last two games. That hurts BADLY. Not only that, but he's turned it over either deep in the other team's end when we can/should be scoring (see: pick 6 against OU), or he's turned it over deep in our end when it's easy for the other team to cash in (see: at CU). An INT at the 40 doesn't usually hurt nearly as much as a pick at your own 5 or inside the other team's 20. And the fumble at CU, yes, Todd was trying to make a play, which is where a lot of his success comes from, but it's HIS job to avoid other players, and it's HIS job to secure the ball. Sometimes things like that happen, but he's made some crucial mistakes at crucial times, and it's hurt us badly.

The entire offense needs to step up, from Warriner to the line to Jake/Toben to Todd and the receivers. As stated above, it's a team game.

Marcia Parsons 12 years, 6 months ago

If claiming to be the "grammer nazi" one should at least get it right. It isn't "bore" or "born", it's "borne". And it isn't "grammer", it's "grammar".

kufanalumni 12 years, 6 months ago

It would probably help Todd perform better if he wasn''t out drunk at the Hawk the night before a big OU football game.

KUFan90 12 years, 6 months ago

Uh oh. New QB coming in to start against KU. Here we go again. I expect Doege to turn in Tim Tebow-like numbers out there on Saturday.

mdfraz 12 years, 6 months ago

oldalum, you got me. To be completely correct, it should have indeed been "has borne". I stand corrected. Wonder if Dugie would admit the same?

As far as "grammar" read my post again. That's what I typed.

kufanalumni 12 years, 6 months ago

Just stating what I saw. It could or could not have affected his performance on gameday. I'm a huge fan of Todd and think he is an incredible player. I also, think he is a very bright kid as well. Drinking before gameday not so bright though.

Kevin Long 12 years, 6 months ago

Jwliddell- I don't know why you and I didn't see eye to eye before, but lately your stealing the words from my mouth. So much for first impressions huh?

It is weird watching this team this year. They don't seem to be fired up at all, just going through the motions. Dropped passes from usually sure handed WR's, etc. I just can't help but think they will snap out of it sooner or later.

Eurekahwk 12 years, 6 months ago

Todd is not a a pocket passer, so is has been an epic fail by the staff that they keep running pass plays out of a set pocket. He cannot see anything if he has to be stationary. It also hurts our pass game that we don't have a set of 320 pound O-linemen to rip holes in the D-line for a surging run game. Without that, Jake Sharp is worthless. He can't run unless there are gaps. Toben Opurum is the only effective option with the small O-line that we have. The fact that Opurum can pick up 3 yards in an obvious running down speaks to what a man he truly is. They can stack the box, and he still bulldozes people for first downs.

These last two losses fall on our offense not our defense. If we don't figure it out, T-Tech is going to look like last year. And they don't even have a veteran QB, Heisman caliber WR. Take nothing of the ATM game, They have a cute little rivalry, so the Aggies don't get beat down by them.

4jhawks4ku 12 years, 6 months ago

John Riggins had his own stool at the Hawk in the 70's. Didnt affect him much...He only went on to become the best running fullback in the NFL.

KURiggins 12 years, 6 months ago

Does anyone get the feeling that Mangino and his staff. Todd Reesing, Meier and Briscoe are hard at it..and Tech better look out...anyone else get that feeling

KURiggins 12 years, 6 months ago

I am reminded of Rocky Balboa. Its not about how hard you get hit..its how much can you take and still get up. One more round, its all we need. One more round. Flying high now!...Fly!....Fly!

Kevin Long 12 years, 6 months ago

It blows my mind as well. I wanted for years to even have a football team to talk about. I just can't believe how quick people are ready to jump ship on this team. If it were the basketball team who was going through a rough time it would be a totally different story on these posts.

Jayhawker63 12 years, 6 months ago

I'm tired of everyone dogging on Todd. He led this team from losing records year after year, to an Orange Bowl victory and Big 12 North title talk. Everyone has that little slump at some point in their careers. Trust me, Todd will show us again soon, just how important he is to this team.

Jayhawker63 12 years, 6 months ago

I'm tired of everyone dogging on Todd. He led this team from losing records year after year, to an Orange Bowl Victory and Big 12 North title talk. Everyone has that little slump at some point in their careers. Trust me, Todd will show us again soon, just how important he is to this team.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.