Saturday, September 1, 2018

Quick recap: KU football falls to Nicholls State in overtime

Kansas quarterback Peyton Bender (7) runs for the gain in the first quarter on Saturday, Sept. 1, 2018 at Memorial Stadium.

Kansas quarterback Peyton Bender (7) runs for the gain in the first quarter on Saturday, Sept. 1, 2018 at Memorial Stadium.


The University of Kansas football team lost its 12th-straight game Saturday at Memorial Stadium in the season opener.

Following a 41-yard field goal by Gabriel Rui on the first possession of overtime, Nicholls State scored the necessary touchdown to finish off a 26-23 upset. Junior quarterback Chase Fourcade delivered the game-winning score on a 4-yard rushing touchdown.

With the loss, the Jayhawks are now 3-34 under fourth-year head coach David Beaty. Kansas hasn’t won a game since the season opener in 2017, which is a streak of 12 straight defeats.

But, if that weren’t enough, the Jayhawks needed some late-game theatrics to even have an opportunity in overtime.

Nicholls State muffed a punt with 5:49 left in regulation, which was ultimately recovered by sophomore linebacker Kyron Johnson on the opposing 10-yard line. Shortly after, senior quarterback Peyton Bender hit senior receiver Kerr Johnson Jr. for a 15-yard touchdown.

Senior receiver Steven Sims Jr. provided insurance with a 2-point conversion pass to Mavin Saunders, which proved to be necessary in the end. Nicholls State kicker Lorran Fonseca nailed a 43-yard field goal with 47 seconds left to send the game to overtime.

Prior to that, both teams struggled to move the ball.

Dontrell Taylor scored on a 15-yard touchdown run to give the Colonels an early 7-0 advantage in the first quarter on their first offensive drive. Bender then answered with a 2-yard touchdown connection with Sims, who now has 16 touchdowns in his career.

Rui and Fonseca traded a pair of field goals in the second quarter to take a 10-10 draw into the intermission. Kendall Bussey, who transferred from Texas A&M;, gave Nicholls State its first lead on a 40-yard touchdown run. Early in the fourth quarter, Kansas recorded its first safety since 2016.



10:29 — Dontrel Taylor 15 run. Lorran Fonseca kick. Nine-play drive for 78 yards, in 3:13. (NSU 7, KU 0.)

3:34 — Steven Sims Jr. 2 pass from Peyton Bender. Gabriel Rui kick. Fifteen-play drive for 75 yards, in 6:55. (NSU 7, KU 7.)


13:00 — Gabriel Rui 54 field goal. Nine-play drive for 51 yards, in 3:42. (KU 10, NSU 7.)

4:06 — Lorran Fonseca 28 field goal. Eight-play drive for 69 yards, in 2:38. (KU 10, NSU 10.)


3:50 — Kendall Bussey 40 run. Fonseca kick. Six-play drive for 58 yards, in 2:41. (NSU 17, KU 10.)


13:17 — Safety on errant punt snap out back of end zone. (NSU 17, KU 12.)

4:26 — Kerr Johnson 15 pass form Bender. Mavin Saunders 2-point conversion pass form Sims. Three-play drive for 10 yards, in 1:23. (KU 20, NSU 17.)

0:47 — Fonseca 43 field goal. Ten-play drive for 49 yards, in 3:39. (KU 20, NSU 20.)


15:00 — Rui 41 field goal (KU 23, NSU 20)

15 — Chase Fourcade 4 run. (NSU 26, KU 23)


Michael Maris 3 years, 11 months ago

I see that the Central Michigan game is slated for ESPN+ as well. At this stage in KU Football program, they should be paying us to watch their football program on TV. AD Long, I understand your cry for supporting the Jayhawks football program. But, Beaty and staff have gotten off to another pathetic start again in 2018. It's damn tiresom to read about how they're going to RUN the football. Let me give you a hint, go hire Glen Mason as a running game consultant. He can damn sure instruct your team how to RUN the football.

Steven Haag 3 years, 11 months ago

I have been on the Beaty bandwagon. I wanted to at least see what he could do with 25 seniors, all the returning “experience”, this supposed awesome offensive line, etc. I knew Nicholls was a good team, but this is pathetic. I said in an earlier post, that I would save comments until after the first game. The first game is over......Beaty needs to go. Absolutely atrocious coaching. Get rid of Bowen too. I’m sure our AD will have more tweets, E-Mails, letters and phone calls than he can handle. I don’t need to see any more

Jeff Coffman 3 years, 11 months ago

I left the bandwagon when Beaty didn't fire Bowen after game 2 or 3 last year.

Brian Wilson 3 years, 11 months ago

Agreed! I have been on Beatty's side until today. It would now take a miracle chain of wins to change my mind. Beaty didn't pull out the stops to get the win. So....

TIM REBOWE for KU Coach in 2019!

He proved to me today that he can turn around a program the right way. KU should hire him.

Steve Corder 3 years, 11 months ago

As one of the LJW scribes said a few days ago, “lose to Nicholls and the Beaty era is unofficially over.”.....or something to that effect.

There may be less than 10k in the stands by end of September.

Owens Smithson 3 years, 11 months ago

BryBryStrick Junior I watched both their game against Georgia and game v TA&M... this team is not that good. When they tried, both teams moved the ball w/ absolute ease against Nicholls. I mean ABSOLUTE EASE. Their athletes don't even compare in terms of size, talent and speed. Ours are obviously not as good as georgia's but we have some skill players good enough to play for TA&M.

We have significantly more talent than these dudes. We should be able to handle them. #Hawksby17

6 Yesterday at 9:06 AM

Bryan Summers 3 years, 11 months ago

I’ve been drinking the Kool-aid for 3 years but I’m done now. I paid $4.99 for espn+ but now plan to cancel. That’s more money than I plan to spend on this team until I see dramatic improvement.

See you all again for basketball season. Smh until it hurts!

Tracey Graham 3 years, 11 months ago

The KU football program has become a complete joke. Firing Beatty is the obvious move but that won't fix anything...the program was a disaster before he was hired and it will still be a disaster after he's gone.

My solution is to drop the program down to the FCS level and try to rebuild it that way. There are other schools that have D-I basketball programs and FCS-level football programs. And there are probably far more high school players in Kansas who could be really good at the FCS level than there are who could be really good at the FBS level.

And if they were able to rebuild the program, they could always apply to move back up to the FBS level in five years or so,

Jeff Coffman 3 years, 11 months ago

Not what you want, flip it around. KU is one of the most profitable college athletic programs. If it can get its program back to respectability, it would make it and the BXII more profitable and more sustainable. Your plan is not what we should be seeking. We should be targeting a coach that understands and can build talent. Beaty was never that coach.

Layne Pierce 3 years, 11 months ago

Let's face it. This football coaching staff does not have a plan. We cannot run, and we cannot pass. Without a bunch of miscues by Nichols, we would not even have been in the game.

Stop the excuses. Let's just put in John Hadl as head coach, not Bowen, not Meacham.
Fact is we need to either get it right, or just drop football. How about Hockey or gymnastics, or Lacrosse.

Sorry Bobby Douglass, sorry Gayle Sayers, Sorry John Riggins, Sorry John Hadl, Sorry Ray Evans, Sorry ...

I hate to advocate for firing someone, but we have no choice. Nebraska sports was talking to Terry Bowden, coach of Akron, and they asked him what it was like for his team to win their division in the MAC, he said it was like Kqnsas going to a bowl game. Everybody likes to make fun of Kansas. So, either we fix it, or we learn to smile and live with it.

Duane S Boor 3 years, 11 months ago

I think that firing HCDB now will accomplish nothing. My guess is that he will be given until the 1st conference game to see where we are headed. If we are winless by then then yeah he should be fired. I am not impressed by what I watched tonight. Our QB was sacked 6 times, as well as 3-4 mishandled snaps, stupid pass interference penalties at a crucial point in the game. In all honesty I don't think we will win a single game this year.

Jeff Coffman 3 years, 11 months ago

Except that it will. We could actually begin looking for a coach immediately (It might not happen until after the season, but the search is a key component). The assistant coaches would actually get a chance to start showcasing their skills to another head coach. Although the new coach would probably bring most of the coaches, likely one or two would be retained. Recruits would know that they are committing to a school not to the current coach (remember there are only 2 recruits committed, but I think one dropped). Also it costs KU $125,000 a game for Beaty to coach and for every game he coaches, his buyout goes up by that amount.

Layne Pierce 3 years, 11 months ago


I share your sentiments, but if we drop down in football, we will not be in the Big 12, or for that matter in any Major 5 Conference, probably a more reasonable surrender option would be to start thinking about moving to a different football conference, that also plays good basketball, maybe the WAC, or American Conference, there we could also play Wichita State at least twice a year in basketball.

But certainly, without a major rethink, the situation is dire, and if we stay, when there is another sesismic change in conferences, we will likely be left out.


Travis Clementsmith 3 years, 11 months ago

What in the world are you guys talking about!? First of all, anyone that proposes going to a conference that would pay the University less has completely lost perspective. You guys want to go from 40 million a year to maybe 5 million a year because you don't want to be embarrassed on the football field any longer? Seriously, is that the kind of financial decisions you make in your own life?

Believe me, we're fielding a B12 team as long as they will let us do so. You really believe the basketball program is going to maintain its standing if it isn't part of a Power 5 conference? That is absolutely nuts. You make the right coaching hire and you can turn a program around. Its been proven over an over. KSU, Duke, Utah. We're never going to be a football powerhouse, and we don't have to be. We do have to be respectable, and the road from debacle to respectable isn't insurmountable.

But, you can't do that by throwing away all the money first. Let the Big Boys decide how they're going to evolve college football, we don't get a say in that. But you don't give back guaranteed money so just stop with this foolish different conference and dropping football talk. That makes absolutely no sense.

Tracey Graham 3 years, 11 months ago

Villanova has won 2 of the last 3 NCAA men's basketball titles. Their football program dropped down to FCS status 20+ years ago. So why would Kansas' standing as a basketball power be affected if the football program dropped down to FCS level? The Big 12 Conference makes a ton of money from the Jayhawk basketball program -- it would not want to lose that revenue. But if the Big 12 was stupid enough to kick them out, the KU basketball program would have ZERO problem landing in another major conference.

Tracey Graham 3 years, 11 months ago

Villanova has won 2 of the last 3 NCAA Basketball national titles. Their football program has been a D-IAA/FCS program for 20+ years. No one made the Wildcats change conferences in basketball based on what they did with their football program

Kansas can still be in the Big 12 for basketball while being an FCS football program. The Big 12 makes a ton of money off the KU basketball program and it won't want to lose that, And do you think the conference would care if KU's football program left? I don't. Unless they care that the other teams won't have the Jayhawks to beat up on every season.

Barry Weiss 3 years, 11 months ago

well, at least it was a competitive game, unlike our typical 32 point losses. that said, we are staring down a winless season. Bryson made fun of me back in June when I said we would lose this game, he said we would win by 20. Bryson, time for an apology.

Kyle Sybesma 3 years, 11 months ago

Did anyone else have pauses every 20 seconds with ESPN plus? Watching this was painful because of the app and the game itself.

John Myers 3 years, 11 months ago

I didn't have any issues streaming on my TV through the ESPN app.

Joe Ross 3 years, 11 months ago

Sometime after the crowds have exited the stadium, the players have left the lockerroom, and the post-game routine is wrapped up, an emotionally exhausted David Beaty will return to his home and shut the door behind him. As his footsteps fall softly to the floor in his white cotton socks, he will be alone with his thoughts in a quiet house where the stark reality will set in that the 2019 Jayhawk football team will be coached by another man. Delusions will abandon him, and he will no doubt begin to ponder where the next destination lies for his family and him.

"There never was much hope. Just a fool's hope."

Five wins would have given Beaty sufficient standing to justify the case of another year. There is no path to 5 wins now. That many teams remain on the schedule, sure. And more. But nearly all of them are significantly better than Nicholls State. Kansas HAS improved compared to last year, but they have not improved enough to call Beaty's future into question: he will be fired at season's end. Four wins would have perhaps split the fan base, but Long would still have made the decision to find a more capable coach, given the importance of football to Power 5 conference status. As it stands now, there is no realistic path to even 4 wins.

Three wins would have left only the most ardent of Beaty supporters calling for his retention. Bagging only two wins, which now seems the most realistic attainable goal, even they would have whispered to themselves that he needs to go. And the fact is, we may now only win 1. Or even none.

Beaty will have no doubt considered his grim prospects before his next public comments where once again he will express optimism and confidence in the football program. But the writing is on the wall. He's a goner. And he knows it. And Long knows it too.

Dead man walking.

Many thanks are owed to Beaty for how he ran a clean program and for his genuine effort. We should all be grateful for at least that much. But it is now time for the program to look to the future and to chart out the path for respectability to return to Kansas football with a new coach at the helm. Thanks for the memories David.

Via con Dios.

Steve Corder 3 years, 11 months ago

Joe, I agree with your last paragraph. Beaty ran a clean program (already in past tense).

It’s now simply about the timing of the announcement. The longer the wait the more painful it will be for everyone!

David Kemp 3 years, 11 months ago

Wow this was the most painful KU game I have ever seen in almost 50 years. We couldn’t execute fundamental football against a lesser team. Our coaches can’t coach players better. I thought with all these d1 lineman we picked up we could run. Our running game looks as impotent as ever and Bender is clueless out there. 6 sacks 4 fumbles, there is no way you can win with that kind of fb. Firing Beaty would send a message we r serious about change. I know that sounds like a broken record but given the number of upper classman., nobody seems to know how to play.

Brad Sherp 3 years, 11 months ago

Where is rock bottom for KU football? It feels like this is it, but look at the list of players coming back next year. It will get even worse before it gets better. I don't know how the on the field product can get worse, but there are not enough bodies to even compete at this level next year.

When we look back 10 years from now, what will be the lowest moment? Has it happened yet, or is it still to come?

KU does not need a new head coach, it needs a priest.

David Kemp 3 years, 11 months ago

I think we r in for some lower lows still this year. We can’t run, we can’t pass, but we can kick.

Bj Cassady 3 years, 11 months ago

The program that had the likes of Gale Sayer, John Hadl, Bobby Douglas and many others has sunk to a JUCO level. It will take 10 years to recover with a good staff and this staff is not it. Else we need to concentrate on indoor tennis, horseshoes.

Jeff Coffman 3 years, 11 months ago

Still not one incentive earned by the coach whose mantra is "earnit".

I feel sorry for the seniors who have committed so much to this team. I think even an interim coach would bring hope, but Beaty and Bowen need to be gone effective immediately (yes I do believe now).

Chris DeWeese 3 years, 11 months ago

Bowen should have been shown the door years ago.

John Kelley 3 years, 11 months ago

Lets hope there is a High School somewhere on the schedule this season.

Len Shaffer 3 years, 11 months ago

What's really surprising to me is that there are people who are surprised by Beaty's ineptitude. He's shown it MANY times over the last three years, and there was no reason to believe that just because the talent was a little better, the coaching would be better as well.

The fact is that Beaty was a horrible hire from the beginning and this year (and the three before it) have been a complete waste. Now we're back to square one (or negative one) yet again.

Dennis Strick 3 years, 11 months ago

As I predicted months ago at 10:01 pm tonight Jeff Long was reaching into his pocket and pulling out the phone number of the next KU head Football coach and making the call. This will all be over soon and as we have seen at Baylor tonight programs can be turned around quickly with the right leadership, direction, plan, and motivation. All will be well soon in Jayhawk land. Mr. Long will be sitting down with Mr. Beaty tomorrow over lunch somewhere and telling him his services are no longer needed.

Brian Skelly 3 years, 11 months ago

  If you take this long to rebuild, we have the wrong guy attempting it at this point.

Randy Bombardier 3 years, 11 months ago

So glad Zenger is gone and can't screw this up again. Bowen will be gone...finally. Beaty will be gone. We will start over. We will win. Bank on it.

Bill Kackley 3 years, 11 months ago

I have been a supporter of Beaty mainly because of the God awful situation he walked into but this teams complete lack of discipline has to be put on him. It isn't that we lost the game, it is the way we did it. Reminds me so much of the Terry Allen days. Mark Mangino would never of put up with the stuid undisciplined play. So yes he has to go.

Michael Maris 3 years, 11 months ago

I'll bet Troy Morrell is thinking, "I can't do no worse than Beaty is doing."


Jeff Scully 3 years, 11 months ago

Paging Jeff Long. That's enough. Fire his ass right now. That's unacceptable.

David Kemp 3 years, 11 months ago

I agree with keegs let’s do something really radical and bring in les miles now! We are just out of synch and need some real direction. The players need a reason to believe.

Layne Pierce 3 years, 11 months ago

Les Miles? Hum. Watch out for the flim-flam man, over-qualified, or under-qualified. Number one, we need a disciplinarian, no I don't mean an abuser, I mean simply, do your job, or go to the end of the bench. Secondly, it needs to be someone who can develop players, not simply hope that recruits live up to their billing, Thirdly it has to be someone who is not a fad chaser, but who believes that fundamentals, are still the key to respectability, yes, it takes talent, but undisciplined talent often loses to inferior disciplines, fundamentally sound teams, and lastly, it needs to be someone, who is not too proud to run every play, if it takes that to keep from being embarrassed, run the clock down every play, if it takes that to keep from being embarrassed, learn 10 plays and know them to perfection, and someone who provides real leadership, whose coaches provide leadership, and who sees the heart of the warriors. Is Les Miles that guy, maybe, but whoever it is, those are essentials. No there are not that many Division 1 ready football players in Kansas, but there a lot of players who have heart, who can contribute, and certainly our next coach must be Division 1 ready when he steps out onto the field. No gimmicks, no fan fare, just simply a football disciplinarian, who can implant a fiere desire to win, and a pride in how the game is played. Is that too much to ask? For the sake of all those football players who came before and did just that, for the sake of the fans who are just asking for the bare modicum of respectability, I pray not. RCJH

Mike Hart 3 years, 11 months ago

I'm all for entertaining coaches to come in next year or take over this season... but let's not go for 64 year old re-tread in Les Miles. We need a proven up and comer, not a has-been.

Steve Corder 3 years, 11 months ago

If Long fires Beaty now: 1) who on this staff is qualified to be the interim head coach? 2) who is a quality head coach NOT currently working that could take over immediately? And would that man be the one you really want as the long term answer to a revolving KU coaching door phenomenon? 3) What are all the down-side possibilities if Beaty finishes the lame duck season and then is released?

Mr. Long was hired for his evaluation prowess and this possibility of a coaching change. I’m sure he was hoping that this occasion would not have presented itself so soon, but he’ll make the right decision at the most appropriate time.

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