Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Updated KU football roster features new faces, 2 omissions

Kansas University football recruiting.

Kansas University football recruiting.


The updated Kansas University football roster, released Wednesday night, on the eve of the start of preseason camp, featured nearly two dozen new names and included a couple of notable omissions.

Wednesday afternoon, KU revealed that offensive linemen Joey Bloomfield and Junior Visinia were no longer members of the roster.

Visinia, a projected starter at guard with a promising future, has stepped away from the program altogether and Bloomfield, a third-year sophomore from Louisville, has retired from football but will remain a part of the Jayhawks' program.

Although those absences serve as a blow to KU's depth on the O-Line, the much-talked-about walk-on program that first-year coach David Beaty has aggressively tried to build may help offset the losses.

The new roster includes four new offensive linemen, all of whom joined the program as walk-ons. Beaty said last month at Big 12 media days in Dallas that he was extremely pleased with the way the walk-on program had come together and added that he expected a handful of non-scholarship guys could help the Jayhawks immediately.

Several of the names officially added to the Jayhawks roster Wednesday night were names that had come up on the rumor mill throughout the offseason. Research and conversations with several people close to a few of these players have indicated that all of them arrived on campus as walk-ons but could be in position to earn scholarships at some point in the future provided they perform well in camp and practice and fall in line with KU's unofficial slogan of “earning it.”

The Jayhawks officially kick off preseason camp Thursday at 5:30 p.m.

Here's a quick look, in alphabetical order, at the most notable new names added to the KU football roster. The list includes seven wide receivers, four linebackers, four offensive linemen, three defensive linemen, three defensive backs, one quarterback, one place kicker and one punter.

DE Mazin Aql — 6-2, 231, Fr., Blue Valley High

PK Nick Bartolotta — 5-7, 195, Soph., College of DuPage

WR Chris Bell — 5-10, 171, Fr., The Woodlands (High), Texas

LB Jacob Davis — 6-2, 242 Wichita Northwest, previously committed to North Dakota State in 2012

LB Kendall Duckworth — 6-1, 205, Fr., Lely High, Naples, Florida

QB Deondre Ford — 6-2, 200, Jr., Dodge City CC; originally from Waco, Texas, has been on campus all summer

WR Deante Ford — 5-10, 165, Fr., Ridge Point High, Missouri City, Texas (same hometown as Nick Harwell)

WR LaQuivionte Gonzales — 5-10, 175, Jr., Texas A&M; transfer is on scholarship and will sit out the 2015 season

P Ruben Guzman — 5-8, 190, Sr., University of Hawaii transfer

LB Hudson Hall — 6-2, 220, Fr., Westlake High, Austin, Texas

OL Larry Hughes — 6-7, 260, Fr., Timber Creek, Texas

DB Hunter January — 6-3, 175, Fr., McGregor (Texas) High, former quarterback

OL Jackson Jenkins —6-4, 308, Fr., Bishop Miege High

OL Beau Lawrence — 6-5, 295, Fr., Blue Valley Southwest, nephew of former KU standout David Lawrence

DL Jason Nix — 6-2, 232, Soph., Rockhurst High

WR Quincy Perdue — 6-3, 210, Soph., University of Alabama-Birmingham transfer

DB Mason Ramirez — 5-11, 205, Fr., Round Rock (High), Texas

OL Mesa Ribordy — 6-4, 245, Fr., Louisburg High

WR Eric Rivers — 5-9, 170, Jr., Bowie High, Arlington, Texas.

LB Marcquis Roberts — 6-1, 216, Jr., South Carolina transfer

WR Joshua Standford — 6-1, 200, Jr., Virginia Tech transfer

OL Hunter Saulsbury — 6-4, 278, Fr., Blue Valley West

DL Taylor Stine — 6-0, 265, Fr., Dallas Jesuit High


Ryan McAtee 6 years, 10 months ago

I am fairly impressed with some of these walk-on's and I hope some can help right away. Matt, any insight on why some of these guys left other universities to come to KU as a walk-on?

Dirk Medema 6 years, 10 months ago

There are articles in the history about several of the walk-on/transfers. Generally tho, they don't include the dirt you're looking for/imagining.

Matt Tait 6 years, 10 months ago

It sounds like a mixed bag of reasons…. Some had no choice, others were looking for a better opportunity, others were impressed enough by Beaty and the staff that they wanted to be a part of what's happening at KU and others just wanted to stay in state.

From the sound of it, though, there are some legit players in this group and they'll definitely help KU in terms of adding to depth and talent.

Phil Leister 6 years, 10 months ago

You use the word "legit" way too much for someone who isn't in college. :)

Michael Bennett 6 years, 10 months ago

This going to be a record setting bad year making us long for the days of Terry Allen and Turner Gill

Don Everett 6 years, 10 months ago

Michael Bennett - if you think the Turner Gill years are something to remember fondly, then you are a complete moron. This year and probably next year will be complete disasters. Give Coach Beaty, at the minimum 4 years, to show what he can do. KU can and will have a good football team sooner than most of you clowns think.

Aaron Paisley 6 years, 10 months ago

That was his point, KU is looking like they will be bad enough this year that Turner Gill will seem competent by comparison. And yes, Beaty needs time, but that doesn't mean this year isn't shaping up to be a historically bad season even by KU standards.

Dirk Medema 6 years, 10 months ago

We could go winless this year, and it wouldn't make TG look competent. It would just mean that the roster hadn't been decimated nearly as badly at that time. And I certainly hope Beaty doesn't make him look competent.

And yes, I was a TG supporter to start.

Calvin Miller 6 years, 10 months ago

Generally, posters here want Beaty to get a chance at 4-5 years. Problem is that Zenger may not survive 2 more disastrous years of football. If a new AD is hired, he will probably hire his own football HC.

David Williams 6 years, 10 months ago

This is an interesting point. 2015 is a write-off, however some progress definitely needs to be seen in 2016. Why he selected Weis is just crazy. Perhaps after the botched almost-hire of Harbaugh (if true) and perceived rushed hiring of Gill, KU looked bad and no one wanted to deal with the administration at that time, so he was a default candidate. The thing Beaty and staff have going for them is that (1) they have been at winning programs, and (2) they know how to recruit, both players and the fans. Mangino (even though he won in 07-08), Gill and Weis IMHO generally did not engage or create long-term relationships with the fan base. It has been mentioned that Weis essentially ignored Kansas for recruiting purposes, and that turned of HS coaches and in turn, the fan base. Beatty and staff are doing the opposite of all these things. Hopefully he can become KU's Art Briles (oh why did we not hire him in 2009...).

Dirk Medema 6 years, 10 months ago

Beau Lawrence is an interesting candidate. As the nephew of David Lawrence, you'd hope he's inherited some aptitude, but the real interesting tidbit comes from Hudl, that indicates he's only been playing FB for 2 years. He could be one of those crazy success stories in a few years.

Dirk Medema 6 years, 10 months ago

So what is the critique on QB Deondre Ford from you gurus? Seems that he throws off his back foot some, but otherwise generally throw a nice ball? And decent wheels when he needs to move. It probably helps that he's been on campus all summer, but would really have helped if he could have brought a few of his WR's with him.

Aaron Paisley 6 years, 10 months ago

Losing Junior Visinia on the OLine us a big deal. That dude was All-Big 12 good and the best returning player KU had on offense. That is a big blow for the offense.

Edward Daub 6 years, 10 months ago

You are correct , we just lost Most Crucial Player #22 for reasons unknown.

Jim Stauffer 6 years, 10 months ago

I would be willing to bet this team will be more efficient in Beaty's first year than any team Turner Gill fielded.

John Fitzgerald 6 years, 10 months ago

Another tough loss. I feel like there's going to be a lot of those this year. And I feel like we'll be watching season 4 of Friday Night Lights when Eric Taylor got sent to coach the East Dillon Lions. Is Beaty our Eric Taylor? I sure hope so!

David Williams 6 years, 10 months ago

I like how several of these newcomers are transfers from other respectable D-1 programs...should add an interesting and positive element to the program's culture. Shame re Visinia, wonder what happened....

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