Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Notebook: Beaty remains faithful in Bowen and KU defense

Texas Tech running back Justin Stockton (4) is tackled by Kansas safety Mike Lee (11) during the half on Saturday, Oct. 7, 2017 at Memorial Stadium.

Texas Tech running back Justin Stockton (4) is tackled by Kansas safety Mike Lee (11) during the half on Saturday, Oct. 7, 2017 at Memorial Stadium.


Five games into the Kansas football team’s 2017 schedule, only three of 129 FBS teams have surrendered more points per game than the Jayhawks’ 44.8.

What’s more, the defense has allowed 506.2 yards an outing — 122nd in the nation.

A few days removed from Texas Tech’s 65-19 thumping of KU, though, head coach David Beaty stated his satisfaction with how defensive coordinator Clint Bowen has handled the adversity that comes with such unwelcome results.

“Well, my faith level is as high as it's ever been,” Beaty said of his trust in his assistant head coach. “I think he's one of the finest around; he really is. He's handled it the exact same way I've always seen him handle things. He gets up every day and he outworks everyone. It matters to him. It matters to him. This university matters to him. This team matters to him. And the production of his unit absolutely matters to him.”

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Beaty referenced Bowen’s experience — he’s in his 10th year overall overseeing a defense either as sole or co-coordinator — as an asset.

“And what we’ve got to be able to do is, we’ve got to grow those young-un's up a little bit faster,” the head coach added of a defense that features a fairly inexperienced secondary.

The latest loss left the Jayhawks (1-4 overall, 0-2 Big 12) “upset” about their defense, according to Beaty, but he also thought improved pass coverage at times allowed KU to show better production in the pass-rush department, with Dorance Armstrong Jr., Daniel Wise and Josh Ehambe all recording a sack apiece.

“It's a work in progress and we're getting better day by day,” Beaty said, “and a lot of that is attributed to (Bowen). His leadership and his consistency. Our guys love Clint Bowen. They love him. They would go to the wall for him.”

The third-year KU coach also divulged he liked how the defensive players responded Sunday.

“They're locked in. They have kind of a bunker mentality, and just selfless guys,” Beaty said. “I mean not a single one of them even remotely close to late and hanging on every word. So they care and I wouldn't want to be anywhere else than right here with those guys.”

Updates on D-backs

Starting sophomore cornerback Hasan Defense missed the Tech loss with mono. Beaty said Tuesday Defense still hasn’t been cleared to play.

“We're hoping to maybe get some good news today or tomorrow with him which would be great,” Beaty said Tuesday.

Meanwhile, the coach had no further update on the status of Derrick Neal, a starting nickelback previously who didn’t suit up versus Tech. Beaty said of Neal’s future with the program after the game: “We’ll see.”

Three days later, KU’s coach declined to provide more information on the matter.

Wait-and-see on Herbert

Sophomore running back Khalil Herbert left the Jayhawks’ Tech loss in the second half with a hamstring injury.

Beaty said KU’s staff will have to “see how he goes,” and expected a game-time decision Saturday at Iowa State (11 a.m., FOX Sports Net) for Herbert.

True freshman running back Dom Williams didn’t record a carry for the first time in his young career vs. the Red Raiders (4-1, 1-1). Beaty said Williams wasn’t “completely healthy” this past week.

“I tried to use him a little bit on some special teams stuff late in the game. But he's getting close,” Beaty said of Williams. “We think he's going to be to be OK to go this week. We certainly need him to. That would be nice. We need to get him back in there and get the ball in his hands a little bit, because he’s a dynamic guy. So hopefully he's well, and I think he is. I think he’s getting close.”

Williams has carried the ball 33 times for 124 yards and three touchdowns.

Herbert leads KU with 68 rushes, 503 yards and four TDs.


Phil Leister 4 years, 12 months ago

Faith level is as high as it's ever been? Good lord. I can't take this unrelenting positivity anymore.

Bryce Landon 4 years, 12 months ago

I know, right? Our faith level in the entire coaching staff, the entire team, and the entire athletic department leadership, is as low as it's ever been - and it will get lower yet.

Joe Ross 4 years, 12 months ago

Here's the thing, Phil. Even though I may agree with you that the asst. coaches haven't produced the results (I mean that's obvious, right), there are two important things to consider here.

  1. It's hard to recruit talent to Kansas, so giving them the raw materials to work with is difficult. Good coaches will have more success elsewhere than they do at Kansas. That's a given.

  2. Though Beaty is probably wrong to feel that his confidence level is as high as he describes, he is certainly right to say that it is. Yes, it's a contradiction. But a coach needs to express faith in his staff. Doing otherwise makes a team get worse. Facetiousness aside, that is possible even at Kansas!

Andy Tweedy 4 years, 12 months ago

I can't give you your first point. I'd like to, but after getting curb stomped by two MAC schools, I refuse to believe that we can't recruit to the levels of the Ohios and Directional Michigan schools. It may be hard to compare our recruiting to Texas and OU, but those schools? And Aimes, IA? And Lubbock, TX? At some point, KU should be able to at least compete with those teams and we aren't competing with them at all.

Doug Cramer 4 years, 12 months ago

Is this like a conspiracy ?

Did Mizzou and K-State form some type of plan to screw us for a couple decades ?

Bryce Landon 4 years, 12 months ago

I don't think Mizzou was in on it; they were too busy trying to leave the Big 12.

But considering our AD is a KSU alumnus, it's not so far-fetched...

Jack Brooks 4 years, 12 months ago

And THAT is why Beaty will not be successful: he absolutely will not hold Bowen accountable.

The results on the field don’t lie. Clint Bowen is terrible at his job—a job he should not have.

Len Shaffer 4 years, 12 months ago

It's nice to know that Beaty's judgment is as sound when it comes to assistant coaches as it is when it comes to quarterbacks ...

Austin Lopez 4 years, 12 months ago

Someone give Reggie Mitchell a call and ask him if he is interested in the Kansas head coaching job.

Jeff Coffman 4 years, 12 months ago

Like I say...Beaty needs to get rid of Bowen... or Beatty and Bowen are gone at the end of the year... and Zenger is not hiring a third coach.

Doug Cramer 4 years, 12 months ago

It's pretty simple.

Beaty gives us hope with a new D.C. or we'll be hiring a new head coach next year. At least that's how I think it will play out.

Doug Cramer 4 years, 12 months ago

Clint Bowen's Resume as a Defensive Coordinator: Source ESPN:

  1. 2017: ranked 126
  2. 2016: ranked 113
  3. 2015: ranked 128
  4. 2014: ranked 106
  5. 2011: ranked 94 (North Texas U)
  6. 2010: ranked 99 (Western Kentucky)
  7. 2009: ranked 85 (Kansas) <---Remember how bad the D-line was ?
  8. 2008: ranked 87 (Kansas) <--Major liability to a returning Orange Bowl Team.

Shame on Beaty for not holding his D.C. accountable. It's very disturbing actually. Classic case of no institutional leadership.

Chris DeWeese 4 years, 12 months ago

I don't understand how these numbers can inspire faith.

Bryan Mohr 4 years, 12 months ago

It's not always the case, but it seems like nice, likeable guys don't do so well as football coaches. Feels like we have that. I suppose Beaty was just doing the salesman thing by talking bowl game before the season. Otherwise, I'd say he is delusional about his team. I guess some people look at poop and see fertilizer.

Bryan Mohr 4 years, 12 months ago

Sorry, not referring to the players but the general condition of the team.

Dennis Mahorney 4 years, 12 months ago

"And what we’ve got to be able to do is, we’ve got to grow those young-un's up a little bit faster,”... "It's a work in progress and we're getting better day by day,”..... Coach has lost his marbles. Is there a grown-up in the room at the Athletics Dept? Do the right thing and get this guy some psychological help.

Chandler Accipiter 4 years, 12 months ago

Oh, that's what that accent is. I thought he was just doing Boomhauer from King of the Hill!

Jeremy D. Morris 4 years, 12 months ago

No Reggie Mitchell. We don't need another position coach as HC and we certainly need someone from outside the KU program's history in my opinion. We've got a better version of Reggie in Tony Hull right now.

Andy Tweedy 4 years, 12 months ago

But I do understand why we try to get guys with ties. If we don't, we end up with another Glen Mason, someone good enough to help us get better and good enough to go somewhere better!

Michael Maris 4 years, 12 months ago

With all due respect, if Beaty was going to fire C. Bowen, don't you think he would've done it by now?

Mid-season is not the time to fire and hire. And, I think highly of Coach Reggie Mitchell. But, he's never been a HC or a Offensive Coordinator at the Collegiate level. And, people are complaining about hiring a WR's Coach (as a HC) who did at least have 2 season's of OC experience.

Ron Prichard 4 years, 12 months ago

These comments are concerning, but what is a HC supposed to say publicly? He has to foster confidence in his staff or the players will lose faith and question why they are running certain drills, schemes, assignments, etc. I am guessing (hoping?) that behind closed doors there is a much different tone being taken. If not, then we truly have a problem.

Chris DeWeese 4 years, 12 months ago

I agree that Beaty's coaches and players hang on his every word. It would be very easy for him to completely lose this team if he says the wrong thing. To us, it does come off as delusional, but what else can he do? I think this is a big s**t sandwich, and we're all going to have to eat it for the foreseeable future. I think we have to stick with Beaty because if we fire him, who in their right mind would want the job? Give Beaty another couple of years and see what happens. At the very least, I do think he needs to replace the defensive coordinator.

Jim Stauffer 4 years, 12 months ago

Ron, You are spot on. He can't say I am upset and plan to replace him at year's end. He doesn't see benefit in firing him now. And there is the possibility he knows some things we don't know about why the defense has played poorly and just cannot say them to us. One thing for sure is the DL has not been productive at all against the weakest part of our schedule. Is that Bowen's fault? I don't know but the most surprising thing about this year's team to me has been the poor play of the DL. We knew the secondary was green but thought the DL would offset it while they gained experience. Maybe Dorrance and Daniel are simply not as good as we thought. And if that is the case we are doomed next year as well.

John Fitzgerald 4 years, 12 months ago

Beaty hired a new DL coach, Jesse Williams. It seems he's managed to make them worse instead of better. So I'd say the fault lies on Beaty, Bowen, Armstrong, Wise, and especially Williams in regards to the DL.

Ryan Shelton 4 years, 12 months ago

Sacks correspond directly to DB play. The longer the QB is in the pocket looking for an open receiver, the better chance he has to get sacked. What we were seeing last year was a by-product of a pretty decent secondary. Seeing as the secondary is perhaps the weakest part of this year's team, it should come as no surprise that our DL aren't getting to the QB.

Jerry Walker 4 years, 12 months ago

Sure...just as the other side of the coin is true...a ferocious pass rush can take some of the pressure off the secondary.

John Fitzgerald 4 years, 12 months ago

It's so comforting that Beaty has confidence in our 126th ranked defense.

Jerry Walker 4 years, 12 months ago

In a word...stunned!

Count me in the group rapidly losing faith and interest in Jayhawk football under Beaty's watch.

Andy Godwin 4 years, 12 months ago

Yes, the defense is poor, but few HQ would make a move in the middle of the season (also must consider recruiting). We can see how well MU turned it around after firing their defensive coordinator a few games into the season. These are matters that have to be decided once this disappointing season comes to a close.

Jack Brooks 4 years, 12 months ago

The matter should be decided now and executed immediately after the final game.

David Brown 4 years, 12 months ago

Toxic two, Beaaty and Bender. And I'll throw in Bowen.

Len Shaffer 4 years, 12 months ago

The killer B's? (And of course by "killer," I mean killing their own team.)

John Brazelton 4 years, 12 months ago

KU's defense suffers from poor tackling and an inexperienced defensive back field. Defense is out with Mono, Neal is out for personal reasons. Torenden had to be moved to Nickel Back because he didn't have the foot speed to cover wide receivers. The defensive back field is only going to get better with on-the-field reps. Joe Dineen's tackling totals per game have gone down as Big 12 competition has begun. The main problem defensive coaches can be held responsible for is poor recruiting good quality defensive backs with each recruiting class..

Daniel Kennamore 4 years, 12 months ago

Remember when we passed on Mike Leach to hire Charlie Weis?

Well Coach Leach now has Washington State literally in playoff contention.

Doug Cramer 4 years, 12 months ago

Don't forget Dave Doeren. Head Coach for NC State. We could have had him too.

Damian Glaze 4 years, 12 months ago

Well, I have officially turned the page on the 2017 football season. Will not watch another minute. I like Beaty, but he completely cheapens his mantra of #earnit if the coaches don't have to live up to the same standard. Can we ever get a press conference where they tell us exactly why the defense is so bad defensively? Are we not playing the right scheme? Is there confusion on the field when the play is relayed in from the sideline? Why are we missing 15-20 tackles a game?

Whatever, he likes the direction we're going defensively. Thanks for freeing up my Saturdays for golf and day-drinking. Rock Chalk!

Jerry Walker 4 years, 12 months ago

Bingo...#earnit isn't worth a plugged nickel when the leaders don't walk the same road as the players.

I'm sure Bowen is all the things said - nice guy - hard worker - bleeds crimson and blue. But if a player exhibits all those traits does he get to start...even when his performance doesn't justify it?

Bryce Landon 4 years, 12 months ago

If Kansas doesn't beat Baylor, I'm giving up on KU football.

Lawrence McGlinn 4 years, 12 months ago

Day drinking would be the only way I would watch the football team at this point! After Gill and Weis, the incompetent admins are obviously shy about firing an incompetent coach.

Austin Lopez 4 years, 12 months ago

I don't have a problem with the secondary being young but my problem is every year Clint Bowen puts a product on the field that doesn't know how to tackle!!

Doug Cramer 4 years, 12 months ago

Every year...we don't tackle worth S**t. Every dang year.

Andy Tweedy 4 years, 12 months ago

We all know that sometimes great coordinators were not great coaches and I'm sure it's vice versa as well. I'm literally just thinking out loud. Remember when Brian Billick was the hottest name in coaching when he was the Vikings OC and then won the SB with a great defense and a bad offense? I wonder if Bowen would have been a better head coach than he is a DC. I just don't understand how our coaches and administration can keep overlooking the results. If it's recruiting, he's had almost a decade to fix that. If it's tackling, he's had almost a decade to fix that. ETC ETC You just can't keep rolling out the same product year after year and not think something is wrong. I don't get it!

Dirk Medema 4 years, 12 months ago

It is amazing to me that so many seem oblivious to the fact that we lost virtually our entire secondary after last season and are still without a full roster. We are not recruiting a bunch of 4* plug and play players so we won't see immediate results. We were in a massive hole when Coach got here and there is no heel kicking to get us out.

I was not optimistic about the results from Saturday but there shouldn't have been any thoughtful person with any notion that it would be a good matchup for us. Especially after last year. Even more so after reading that our DBs lost 40% of the starters.

But all that can come from the peanut gallery is we should repeat the reboot that got us here. It is going to take time. That was the case when the rebuilding began and is still the case. Some will site examples of others that have turned programs around sooner but I would be willing to bet that none started with only 50 players. Not that anyone cares to remember more than a couple weeks worth of history. Let's just repeat it.

Doug Cramer 4 years, 12 months ago

Dirk - cmon man. We've dealt with Bowen's "results" and performance for a decade now. His defenses get worse by the year ! The more experienced he gets, the worse his defenses are. How much more time do you think we should give him ?

When it comes to Beaty and Meacham, I agree that more time is needed and they will have that offense rolling, especially if Beaty quits jacking around with QBs. But as far as Bowen is concerned, his time was up 10 years ago when he took a top 10 Orange Bowl defense and plummeted it to 85 out of 119. He's NEVER had a good year...EVER.

John Fitzgerald 4 years, 12 months ago

UAB shutdown their program in 2014 for 2 years and this year they have 3 wins, just as many as Beaty has had in 2.5 years.

Damian Glaze 4 years, 12 months ago

LOL! That is not what I needed to read. Thanks for sharing.

Titus Canby 4 years, 12 months ago

Good points Dirk. Firing the coaches and going through the exact same process again is not the solution.

Brett McCabe 4 years, 12 months ago

Of course it is. Hiring bad coaches over and over is the problem, and one that needs to be rectified right now.

Glen Miller 4 years, 12 months ago

As a person and representative of our University, you couldn't find a better guy than Bowen...... as a defensive coordinator, you can't fool us anymore. Words are easy to sugar coat and make all pretty. The stats and records of our defense with him at the helm speak for themselves and they tell me that he's just not a very good defensive coordinator. Let's put him in a personnel role or some kind of recruiting role only. I don't mind having him in our program, he is a very good champion for our University because he does love KU so much, but this is becoming insanity to keep excusing his poor performance over what now is plenty of time to deduct a good analysis from. We aren't THAT stupid Coach Beaty and I don't think that you are either. Your job just might depend on it.

Austin Bergstrom 4 years, 12 months ago

How can you offer someone a head coaching job and then tell him that his defensive coordinator has already been chosen for him? Not once but 3 times. It's time to give the head coach full reign of his team. How bout hiring the best qualified instead of one who will give the KU brass what they want(Bowen on staff). I'd rather have a guy here for 3 years who generates wins and excitement then leaves for greener pastures than put up w/this. Other schools lose up and coming coaches and replace them w/ another one(Memphis comes to mind). We are the laughing stock of college football, which quite honestly we deserve!

Barry Weiss 4 years, 12 months ago

and there it is once again, Beatty with the opportunity to take "some" responsibility for the product on the field. It might help his credibility to just one time, one time, admit he and his assistant coaches have not done an adequate job coaching up these kids to even being remotely competitive. But no, its always the player fault. I'm really disappointed in his comments. Good coaches take some of the blame.

Bryce Landon 4 years, 12 months ago

Rarely does Bill Self take any blame for the defeats his basketball team suffers, and yet he is a Hall of Fame coach.

Barry Weiss 4 years, 12 months ago

not true, I have heard Coach Self take the blame. Fortunately, it does not happen every game like it does with Beatty. Surely you see that?

Jack Brooks 4 years, 12 months ago

Bill Self has won 82% of his games, 14 straight Conference titles (and counting) and a national championship. His system obviously works and generally is on the players the few times a season they do lose. Let’s not compare historic greatness with historic ineptitude. That’s absurd.

Charlie Gaughn 4 years, 12 months ago

Let's face it, this is the Good 'ol Boy's club at this point. Zenger supports Beaty 100%, the Chancellor supports Zenger 100%, Beaty supports Bowen 100%. The common denominator is that they all have their guaranteed salaries and could really care less if KU wins another game over the course of the next 3 years. Very much like the Weis debacle.

To Beaty's defense, he was stuck with Bowen by Zenger. Not sure of the details but I'm guessing there was some guaranteed time frame that Bowen was given by not being picked for the head coaching job. It's senseless for Beaty to trash Bowen if he's stuck with him for the duration. The amazing thing is how they keep handing out salary increases like we're a top 10 program.

This Chancellor had better pull his head out and right this ship quickly. Maybe David Booth see's something to support here but I think the average donor is pretty much fed up. I know my contribution this year is about 10% of what it was when Mangino was here and it won't go back up until Zenger is gone.

Bruce Bertsch 4 years, 12 months ago

Lets get real...ask yourself how many of our defensive starters would see the field at any other Big 12 school and then remember that Bowen was there to recruit all of them. Now is not the time to pull the trigger but one minute after the final loss would be appropriate.

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