Wednesday, May 30, 2012


Charlie Weis shows national scope

Kansas head coach Charlie Weis calls a play during the first half of the Spring Game on Saturday, April 28, 2012 at Kivisto Field.

Kansas head coach Charlie Weis calls a play during the first half of the Spring Game on Saturday, April 28, 2012 at Kivisto Field.


It’s early to draw any concrete conclusions on where, other than in the home state and neighboring Missouri, the new Kansas University football staff will concentrate its recruiting efforts.

But it’s not too early to get a hint. Thus far, it looks as if the Charlie Weis recruiting net will more closely resemble Glen Mason’s than Mark Mangino’s.

Mason, who played at Ohio State and came to KU from the head-coaching position at Kent State, had a national/Big Ten flavor to his recruiting. He started at home with Kansas and Missouri, then took a national recruiting approach, drawing equally from California, Florida, Michigan, Ohio and Texas.

Mangino, who had worked at Kansas State and Oklahoma, concentrated his efforts in Big 12 country, heavy with Texas players first, then Kansas, Oklahoma and Missouri.

Weis spent five years coaching at Notre Dame, the ultimate national football program. He built a national name in the NFL, so it stands to reason he would have national appeal as a recruiter. lists 34 players from the next recruiting class who have received scholarship offers from KU, three of whom have made oral commitments. The geographic breakdown: five from California and Missouri, four apiece from Florida, Ohio and Texas, three from Kansas and Washington, D.C., one apiece from six different states.

Compare that to Mason’s and Mangino’s final rosters, and remember many Kansas natives were walk-ons.

Mason listed 99 players on his 1996 roster: Kansas 21, Missouri 14, California and Ohio nine, Florida and Texas eight, Michigan seven, Illinois four, Colorado and Pennsylvania three apiece were the most common home states.

Mangino had 102 names on his 2009 roster, including 33 from Texas, Kansas 24, Oklahoma 11, Missouri nine, Florida four, California, Illinois and Ohio three apiece.

Not counting the six transfers from Division I schools, Weis is bringing in 20 new players in 2012, and Texas leads the way with six.

So far, the new staff has not brought in any players from Oklahoma, a fertile recruiting state for Mangino, but not for Mason.

On the surface, the fact that just four of the 34 players listed by Rivals as having received offers from Kansas come from the state of Texas seems like a cause for concern, but without football staffs showing their cards in recruiting, it’s tough to read too much into that.

Sometimes coaches like to wait until the end to make offers so those recruits can’t use that leverage with schools closer to home, trying to draw offers.

Weis’ name is a national recruiting plus, but one that could be nullified if KU doesn’t maintain a strong pipeline to Texas, where Big 12 exposure helps every conference member.


ahpersecoachingexperience 10 years, 4 months ago

For the first time ever TK is sooooooooo right. Texas is the place to be for amazing high school athletes. All you have to do is look at the Big 12 Texas school and see how they finished last year. Watching Baylor hang the Alamo Bowl banner is going to bring a tear to my eye. And aTm not becoming bowl eligible until their second to last game against a Turner Gill coached KU team, TT being the other non bowl eligable Big 12 team other than us, UT being so irrelevant that I can't even remember what they played in, heck even throw in OU's Texas sized amount of players from texas (see what I did there) had to be because of the few out of state recruits on their team, not the Texas kids fault!

I'm not saying there aren't good kids in Texas. I am saying that some get elevated just because they played high school ball in Texas.

ahpersecoachingexperience 10 years, 4 months ago

Last year Alabama had 4 kids from Texas on it and USC who is everyone's favorite to win it all this year has 0.

Travis Shinkle 10 years, 4 months ago

I agree. Personally, I don't care WHERE coach gets the kids just that he gets the ones who want to compete and win. Period, end of story

kualum95 10 years, 4 months ago

He better go somewhere outside of north Tx to get recruits because word has gotten out to a 5A HS coach that he is taking sholarships away from north Tx kids. This coach has now banded KU from his fieldhouse and is spreading the word to other HS coaches..... sending Campo in isn't going to help.

jgrobb 10 years, 4 months ago

watching UofH beat Penn St was nice too................

Jim Jackson 10 years, 4 months ago

Damn dude, you know your stuff. KU and ND alum?

I'm from Chicago, I know a lot of ND guys, they didn't seem to like him but they have high hopes for Kelly..

GregStang 10 years, 4 months ago

Mangino vs. Mason: Aloha Bowl vs. Orange Bowl. I could be wrong on that Aloha Bowl, I wasn't a KU fan in '96, before I was a KU fan/student/alum. I'm not knocking the "national" approach, but Todd Reesing is from Texas.

Micky Baker 10 years, 4 months ago

Eric Vann in 1995 was there as was L. T. Levin and June Henely. June was front runner for heisman most of that year. Vann destroyed UCLA in the Aloha Bowl that year. Eric Vann holds the second all time run from scrimmage at 98 yards against Oklahoma in 1996 and is from El Dorado, Ks.

Jim Moore was Tight End, from Garden City, Ks

Dana Stubblefield not from Texas.

In 1991 Tony Sands set the single all-time rushing record in all of Division 1 with almost 400 yards rushing against Missouri, not from Texas. I think 2 or 3 may have passed that since then.

Yeah, Gale Sayers was not from Texas

Aqib Talib, was from Texas

Charles Gordon? Not sure there

Dorian Brew? Not sure

Kerry Meier? Not from Texas, Pittsburgh, Kansas

Chip Hillary, not from Texas I believe he was from California(I could be mistaken)

Mark Williams, I'm not sure there. He should have been a 4 year starter, but led KU to a 3 way tie for second in the Big 8 in 1995 with Dana Stubblefield, Eric Vann, Jim Moore, June Henley, and LT Levine and what's that little wide receiver's name that made that great play in Norman when KU beat them 38-17 that night after trailing 14-0 early the week after beating Colorado in Boulder who was then ranked 2nd in the nation on June Henley's back. Yeah, KU also split a home and home with TCU with June Henley.

Of course, Mason had the team playing against Notre Dame on year, Florida State another year, UCLA, Michigan State, etc in non-conference regular season games. Yeah, and KU beat both Oregon and Oregon State with Mason at the helm. They played California Bears on their first night game ever at Memorial Stadium. Lost a close one with Chip Hillary at QB.

Mason made better players out of everyone he coached, even better than Mangino did. Charlie Weis seems to be better than Mason.

KU's greatest players, outside of Todd Reesing, came from outside of Texas. Mason was a better coach and recruiter than Mangino and I think Weis is as good a recruiter but better coach.

Mangino lucked into Reesing when Barman got hurt against Colorado in 2006. Then Kerry Meier even started before Reesing at QB before Reesing became the KU star QB. Mangino also ended kid's careers when they made a mistake that they could have learned from if he let them, but he didn't.

The only guy that Mangino didn't bench was Talib when he did the high step into the endzone in the Orange Bowl. Everyone else that had a personal foul for unsportsmanlike conduct he benched and they saw very little PT after that, and were talented players. Weis will probably let them learn from the mistakes, and actually coach them to be better players.

actorman 10 years, 4 months ago

June Henley was the frontrunner for the Heisman for most of the year??? You're being sarcastic, right???

Micky Baker 10 years, 4 months ago

Actually, it was the year after that after Levine graduated and was drafted to the NFL. My mistake.

GregStang 10 years, 4 months ago

Well, several of the "not Texas" players you mentioned were from Kansas, which is a no brainer to recruit. The article shows that Mangino 2009 had more Kansas players than Mason 1996, at least in absolute terms.

And even if "Texas" holds up decent against "not Texas", that's pretty impressive for Texas. Also, Dezmon Briscoe is from Texas.

As for Mangino vs. Mason, scheduling is a part of coaching strategy, and Mangino's strategy appears to have worked better than Mason's. Maybe Mason's best team was better than Mangino's best team, but what does that get you? I'll still take an Orange Bowl win over an Aloha Bowl win any day.

And Mangino stacks up nicely as far as bowl games and winning seasons against all of KU football before and after Mangino, which includes Glen Mason.

Also, I was at that Colorado game where Reesing debuted, and I remember having the impression that Mangino put him in to have a chance at winning the game, and I feel like he would have with or without an injury. It cost Reesing a year of eligibilty, but might have saved Mangino a job, and thus gave us the best years of KU football we have (arguably?) ever had.

Micky Baker 10 years, 4 months ago

In 1995, the Orange Bowl was more prestigious. The only reason KU played in the Aloha Bowl was due to tie breakers.

KU beat Colorado Colorado beat K-State and K-State beat KU. All three went 9-2 while Nebraska won the league.

That 1995 team would have won the Big 12 Championship in 2007, I do believe and would have played for the NC in 2007.

Micky Baker 10 years, 4 months ago

Kansas smoked OU in Norman and Colorado in Boulder, both rated in the top 15 on the road in back to back weeks.

40-24 vs Colorado 38-17 vs Oklahoma

I do remember the WR that made that catch in the 2nd half at OU now. Ashundai Smith.

Glen Mason actually beat the upper echelon teams in the conference. Mangino beat Missouri once with Todd Reesing and company. I'm thinking Mason would have beat Missouri three straight years if he had Reesing.

yates33333 10 years, 4 months ago

Your right. Who cares if he is like Mangino or Mason. They were winners. Regarding Texas football. It is among the best in the country. Their high school players hit like small college players. I think of Pitt State in Kansas. I hope he recruits nationwide and, of course, in Texas. This anti-Texas bias is B.S. KU needs winners in football and all other sports.

rastameta 10 years, 4 months ago

Mason put more guys in the NFL than Mangino. Mason and his staff were much better recruiters.

Martin Rosenblum 10 years, 4 months ago

Going to bowl games does a lot for recruiting. Let's show we can be a team above 500 and quailify for a bowl game and it will be easier to go to places where the better recruits tend to come from. Weis's name and resume has gotten him a good crop this year. But, success/wins will be the "walk the walk" factor for next year's class of newbies.

jhox 10 years, 4 months ago

You can't limit yourself to mostly Texas recruits, but it would be foolish to overlook that state. Texas is pretty well picked over by top programs and KU often gets the state's marginal high D1 players. We can't just assume because they're from Texas they are better. Instead we need to do a better job of weeding out the marginal players and finding those gems who have been overlooked. Think of all the D2 guys who play in the NFL. Look at all of the NFL guys who came out of Pitt State and NW Missouri over the years. We cant let local and regional guys like those drop to the D2 schools. They are out there but they need to be found.

You cant always trust what the recruiting services have to say about a kid. Those services are often manned by journalist types, not guys who actually played or coached the game, yet coaches let those guys tell them who to look at. Often their recommendations are based on a 3 minute highlight tape. Most players could put together 3 minutes of highlights, even if they stink most of the time. There are no shortcuts in recruiting if you are a KU. You have to scout more than the other guys.

We need to work hard to find guys who are high D1 talents but who have been overlooked. When you are where KU is at in the food chain, you have to work a little harder and a lot smarter than everyone else.

Andy Tweedy 10 years, 4 months ago

This could just as easily be an article about basketball. We were awfully successful with Coach Williams' plan to recruit pretty much everywhere except places not named California, but then Coach Self had this whacky idea to recruit more nationally. I think we'll be fine!

rockchalk_dpu 10 years, 4 months ago

I've wondered the same thing about Roy being so non-confrontational with UNC while he coached at KU, but find it odd that he has decided not to employ a similar tactic toward KU poaching both Hansbrough and Barnes from Big 12 country. Just seems odd he wouldn't extend us a similar courtesy.

You are certainly right that Williams' teams lack mental toughness to take several punches and respond stronger, but I'd add in the in-game strategy and adjustments that Self seems to thrive on. It also seems that Self gets the most out of his players on the defensive end more than any other coach I've seen, up there with Izzo probably. That Big 10 bruising mentality serves our teams well on those off nights, something that Roy's teams never really had and were exposed in close tournament games.

yates33333 10 years, 4 months ago

Yeah. Like the best quarterback in KU football history.

Paul Wilson 10 years, 4 months ago

I don't care where you get them. I am simply sick of being the laughing stock of college football. No matter how big of homers we all are, it doesn't change the fact that our football program is a joke and will continue to be unless we win. I know to talk football in May means talking about this stuff but I'm sick of talk. All I ask is that we have more wins than losses....consistently.

KGphoto 10 years, 4 months ago

Here's a nice piece by Bedore... in 1988.,6629214

I think Mason had a steeper hill to climb than Weis does today. Those Valesente years were rough man. The guy dug a complete void of talent in just two years.

Lots of people say Turner's teams were the worst in KU history, but I don't think they were around in '86-'87. We were outscored 398-133 (3-1) against a much softer schedule in '87, compared to 525-268 (2-1) last year, against a murderer's row of Big 12 bowl teams. I couldn't name you one player from '87, but Weis is inheriting some legitimate talent at a few key positions.

By the way, it took Mason 4 years to post a winning season. He went 8-24 his first 3 years. 1-10 in '88. Just sayin'.

Andy Tweedy 10 years, 4 months ago

I completely agree with you. Those two Valesente teams were just AWFUL!!! If it hadn't been for K-State, we would have possibly been the worst team in the nation. My roommate played, and he had very little to say positive about the way things were run. And I say save all this Coach Val was a nice guy crap. I like to think I'm a nice guy, but nobody is dumb enough to hire me to coach their D1 football team.

KGphoto 10 years, 4 months ago

Yeah, sorry. Don't know what happened there.

april28 10 years, 4 months ago

Agreed that Mason had a bigger job to do - far worse facilities and a mess of a program.

Keegan's concern on Texas seems misplaced: 5 California, 5 Missouri, 4 Florida, 4 Ohio and 4 Texas. CA, FL, OH and TX are the four most heavily recruited states in the country and CW seems to be recruiting all of them about equally. For KU, Missouri is a natural recruiting ground so Weis's approach seems to be simply to go where the players are. As mentioned by an earlier poster, in-state kids will be asked to walk-on unless they are big-time recruits.

What bothers me a little is that the Purple Plague seems to offer just about everyone that we do. I think that this is how they keep their recruiting budget under control. The AD said: just find out who KU offers and then offer them, too. Saves time on recruiting visits and money on the Greyhound tickets to go visit kids.

With Missouri gone, I am quickly starting to hate the Plague even more......

JayHok 10 years, 4 months ago

What is there to hate without Mizzou? Not really much of anything. Perhaps this is what the University of Kansas has needed for quite sometime--a chance to quit saying "if we beat Mizzou, the rest of the games don't matter."

There isn't historically anything to hate besides Mizzou. 1% of each fanbase has its obnoxious fans, sure---but no fanbase can immitate the utter stupidity, jerkiness, hair gel, ripped leather jacket scuz, insecure dirtbag loser--brag about big 12 football and basketball championships that never happened---attitude that was a Missouri fan. The other fanbases for the most part are all stable pillars for the future of the Big 12. Pretty much just leaves respect here. And hate---save it for Mizzou when we play them once every 30 years. Or better yet, forget Mizzou and focus on winning some da#n games!

Weis admirably laid it out in the beginning that Kansas was the battle first. That's what we needed to hear and that's a good way to see the building process. Truly KSU is the Ag school. That's great, every state needs one. Their people are nice enough if they're not freaking out about their purple insecurity. They've had a tough time over the years dealing with being the other school in the state.

That's their problem not ours. We are the University of Kansas and though our leadership in some areas has been poor the last two years our focus is back to where it needs to be.

As fans we need to fill the stadium for every game and re-develop our football culture something Kansas football has actually possessed several different decades in our history long before the shocking 90's of KSU football going from the worst team ever to averaging 8 wins a season. Deep down KSU is insecure because we have been there before and even during their best times, the University of Kansas went to and won a BCS bowl game---something KSU has never appeared in. Is that fair? Not for us to worry about. But like Weis said, we need to respect them first, something we could never muster for Mizzou. There's no one to hate anymore. But there's plenty of room for respect of each big 12 institution which in the end will make the Jayhawks better in the longrun.

F@~< Mizzou!

Bville Hawk 10 years, 4 months ago

" We are the University of Kansas"

Uh, that's Kansas University...

hawksince51 10 years, 4 months ago

KSU played in the BCS Fiesta Bowl twice. The Bishop team beat the McNabb Syracuse team in 1997.

JayHok 10 years, 4 months ago

Last I checked there were 50 states in the US. For two years Kansas fans have been brainwashed into believing without talent from Texas, Kansas football will look terrible on the field. This article is ironic especially considering Gill's connections in Texas. I must have been watching the wrong team when a roster loaded with Texas talent---the U of K--- would get beat 50-9 on a regular basis the last two seasons.

april28 10 years, 4 months ago

More fun facts.....

NFL Players by State:

  1. California
  2. Texas
  3. Florida
  4. Ohio

State Populations:

  1. California - 37.2million
  2. Texas - 25.1 million
  3. New York - 19.4 million
  4. Florida - 19.0 million
  5. Illinois - 12.8 million
  6. Penn. - 12.7 million
  7. Ohio - 11.5 million

So.....New York is dominated by NYC which tends to nullify it as fertile recruiting ground. Philadelphia and Chicago have similar, but less dramatic impacts on their states as football hotbeds.

In short, the states with the most people - and some football culture - create the most players. However, "all wells can run dry", and the earlier comments of overrating kids just because they are from one of the top four "football" states seems to be rampant.

Bottom line: CW and KU will always have an uphill battle in recruiting until we are consistently good, consistently well-coached and develop a reputation in some key recruiting area as a good place to go play ball. And will still be tough. This isn't a job for wimps. KSU hired the perfect guy. Hopefully, so have we.

JayHok 10 years, 4 months ago

One more thing. Something Kansas basketball, Kentucky basketball and North Carolina basketball all have in common. They don't worry about other teams obsessively which is what a hated team can do to even the most rational fanbases. Everyone wants to play KU, UK, UNC in basketball to gain the all important exposure and a chance for a huge upset. These healthy basketball fanbases focus on getting better. Their fans focus on getting better. Complete respect for an upcoming an opponent.

The talk is about the team. Our team.

Mizzou leaving could be one of the best things to ever happen to the University of Kansas. Quantril's body is buried. Time to focus on our team, our strategy, our players, our coaching staff which I believe has 7 super bowl rings and 2 NCAA championship rings --Campo with Miami and Grunhard with ND. Weis with the Giants. Weis with the Patriots 3 times. Campo with the Cowboys 3 times.

JayHok 10 years, 4 months ago

Alden taking one more shot at the big 12. We already knew Beebe sucked Alden, but golly, I wonder if Alden and Mizzou putting out national headlines a couple years ago might have had anything to do with the big 12 conference feeling a little insecure and 'in the moment' as he says with Nebraska and Colorado suddenly deciding to depart while Mizzou continued to put out more headlines about going to the Big 10. Amazing the stupidity. Amazing the SEC doesn't have more control of Alden's vocal chords already. Wow. Alden's quote below. Wow.

"“These [SEC] schools, they don’t talk about just living in the moment; they talk about what’s good for the league a decade from now, 20 years from now, 30 years from now,” Alden said, shortly after his meeting with the other SEC athletic directors ended Tuesday. “I’m not used to that [with big 12 schools].”

Instead, Alden said, he’s used to attending these meetings [in the big 12] and watching everyone be in reactive mode instead of proactive mode [as it is in the SEC meetings]."

Robert Brown 10 years, 4 months ago

I think one gauge of whether or not we are being successful recruiting is by comparing the other schools who had interest in a particular athlete. If you look at KU's roster, you'll see alot of MAC, Conference-USA and Mountain West schools on the short list for recruits.

We will know recruiting is successful when, instead of picking KU over Tulsa or Colorado State, recruits are picking KU over Missouri, Illinois and Texas Tech, and Arkansas. It really doesn't matter what the state the recruit is from.

Robert Brock 10 years, 4 months ago

KU has gone to Texas for the treasure trove of two-star players that the state makes available. The Hawks have learned how to beat Louisiana Tech and Navy for some of them.

I hope that Weis will not bother with Texas unless he intends to succeed in beating UT, OU, OSU, TCU, Baylor, or Texas Tech for a few players.

Robert Brown 10 years, 4 months ago

I don't know why you would avoid Texas. KU will play at least two road games a year in Texas until the conference expands. That should help recruiting. Dave Campo has Texas connections and being a former Cowboy coach should help. And think about how MIssouri successful MU has been in recruiting players from Texas. Well, if you study the new SEC schedule, MU will play a conference game in Texas once every TWELVE years. There may be a opportunity to pick up players who would have considered MU in the past.

Randy Bombardier 10 years, 4 months ago

I don't know about state to state so much. This is of course a very general article. It seems to me that just like in college it is about school to school or coach to coach. Recently there was an article, ESPN I think, that talked about a particular high school turning out NFL talent. We don't often think about high schools turning out NFL players, but that is a good way to look at it.

We need to develop relationships with great high school coaches (while also evaluating them for coaching capabilities at the D-1 level), ask them for leads of under-rated players, have camps with them and some of their best recruits and so forth. It is about building relationships and fortunately Weiss has a pleasant personality for that. His NFL experience is more likely to attract the interest of those coaches. I think this is the main thing: close working relationships with high school and juco coaching staffs. I wonder though if we do not hit Texas as heavy will we see those same relationships slide?

I'd focus on QBs, WRs, DBs, RBs, and all the rest in that order. With those first four groups I would scour the country and even overseas. With the remainder I might take a different approach.

Randy Bombardier 10 years, 4 months ago

Otherwise, I would say Mizzu, Cal, Florida, Texas, Ohio in that order.

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