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Monday, October 3, 2016

David Beaty on KU’s offensive woes: ‘We’ve gotta finish drives’

Kansas wide receiver Shakiem Barbel (82) has nowhere to go as he is brought down by several Texas Tech defenders after a catch during the third quarter on Thursday, Sept. 29, 2016 at Jones AT&T Stadium in Lubbock, Texas.

Kansas wide receiver Shakiem Barbel (82) has nowhere to go as he is brought down by several Texas Tech defenders after a catch during the third quarter on Thursday, Sept. 29, 2016 at Jones AT&T Stadium in Lubbock, Texas.

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It’s obvious to University of Kansas head football coach David Beaty, and anyone keeping tabs on the team four games into the season, the Jayhawks’ lack of offensive production has cost them dearly in three consecutive losses.

KU enters the week ranked last in the Big 12 in scoring (25.5 points a game), rushing offense (91 yards a game) first downs (17 a game), third-down conversions (32.1 percent), time of possession (25:33) and turnover margin (-1.75 a game) — and that’s with the support of numbers put up in a 55-6 romp against outmanned FCS foe Rhode Island in the season opener.

The Jayhawks (1-3 overall, 0-1 Big 12) rank ninth in total offense (353 yards a game), eighth in red zone offense (81.8 scoring percentage on 11 trips) and seventh in passing offense (262 yards a game) as they prepare to face TCU (3-2, 1-1) Saturday, at Memorial Stadium.

“We’ve gotta finish drives,” Beaty responded during Monday’s Big 12 coaches media teleconference, when asked about his thoughts on the offense coming off Thursday’s 55-19 loss at Texas Tech. “I mean, as we get inside that 50 and we get opportunities. We’ve gotta be sure we put points on the board with those drives, and when we do it we need to finish with touchdowns.”

Simply reaching Red Raiders territory proved difficult this past week, though, for the KU offense during its Big 12 opener. On 17 total drives, the Jayhawks’ average start came on their own 30-yard-line and series often lulled to a standstill, with seven three-and-outs during the road loss.

On 12 occasions, a KU series began and ended on the visitors’ side of the 50-yard-line. On one possession that crossed the midway mark of the field, Kansas only went as far as Texas Tech’s 49.

Twice, both instances coming in the third quarter, the Jayhawks operated under the benefit of starting a drive in Red Raiders territory. The results: a seven-play, 39-yard drive for a TD, and a nine-play, 20-yard series ending in a successful Matt Wyman field goal.

Later, in the fourth quarter, Kansas advanced to Tech’s 29 before Montell Cozart threw an interception.

“If we can avoid the turnover problem,” Beaty said, “then it gives you a chance to finish those drives, so that’s what we’re focusing on.”

Injury updates

Beaty didn’t have specifics as of Monday morning but provided limited updates on a couple of key Jayhawks who left the field hurt at Texas Tech.

The head coach said he thinks sophomore defensive line standouts Dorance Armstrong Jr. and Daniel Wise should be able to play against TCU (11 a.m, ESPNU).

“But we’ll know a lot more definitively tomorrow,” the coach added, “so I’ll be able to give you an update then.”

KU-Baylor kickoff set

Following the Jayhawks’ first home game in four weeks, they will hit the road again Oct. 15 for a road date with Baylor.

The Big 12 announced Monday the game will kickoff at 2:30 p.m. and air on FOX Sports 1.

The Bears are 11-4 all-time versus Kansas and a perfect 7-0 in Waco, Texas.

Comments

John Fitzgerald 5 years, 8 months ago

I'm sorry Coach but you have to start them to finish them. A 3 and out does not qualify as a start.

Joe Ross 5 years, 8 months ago

After I made my comment below, I read yours. You beat me! If it's obvious to us....

John Fitzgerald 5 years, 8 months ago

I know right... maybe we should coach them.

David Kemp 5 years, 8 months ago

Yes and in reality the only red zone drive last game still netted a fg, so I don't know what games he is watching!

Michael Lorraine 5 years, 8 months ago

Willis was one of the few consolations from last year’s train wreck but at the very least I thought 2016 would be without a QB issue. But even more disconcerting than the QB position is the dreadful feeling that we have yet again hired the wrong head coach and we have to give him his chance before we can get rid of him.

Joe Ross 5 years, 8 months ago

Almost half of our possessions were three and outs, and we're worried about finishing drives.

How 'bout we get 'em started?

Kevin Robert Fest 5 years, 8 months ago

How about the fact that the coach AND offensive coordinator have to call the right play at the right time. Most of the time it looks as though he is guessing. Don't put it all in the players the play calling has been atrocious so step it up coach you wanted to be the OC lets see something. AND NO MORE STARTING COZART THAT MIGHT HELP DON'T YOU THINK?!!!!!!!

Andy Tweedy 5 years, 8 months ago

I can't disagree with most of the comments above, but I still hold out hope that year three will bring a significant turnaround, once we develop some sort of offensive line...cuz the one we have now is not a Big XII offensive line. While I can't argue one bit that Cozart has not been good, and I do think Willis should be the starter, this OL has done nothing to give either of them a chance to succeed. If that big dude from 'Bama is good at all and we can develop a couple of our own, I really do think we'll improve significantly.

Marc Frey 5 years, 8 months ago

Agree. We lack Big 5 Power Conference talent at many positions. ..mainly the O-line. I have seen enough 2nd and 3rd stringer QBs shred our D over the years. All they needed was pocket protection and 6 seconds to male a pass.

Jim Stauffer 5 years, 8 months ago

While I would agree this turnaround, if it happens, seems to be taking place differently than others, I am very content to give a good man, a great recruiter, an excellent position coach, a thorough opportunity to build this roster and develop players to the point we can succeed. Anyone who is declaring Beaty a failure at this stage is just an frustrated fan sitting on the couch second guessing. For those of you criticizing his play calling, how many times have you sat on your couch and called the right play in 13 seconds or so BEFORE the play is run? After 3 more years with this staff our roster and team will be in the best shape since '07, pure and simple. I like that.

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