On list of college football's top Power Five coaches, David Beaty finishes last


Kansas head coach David Beaty shows his frustration after a West Virginia touchdown during the fourth quarter on Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017 at Memorial Stadium.

Kansas head coach David Beaty shows his frustration after a West Virginia touchdown during the fourth quarter on Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017 at Memorial Stadium. by Nick Krug

Headed into his fourth season in charge of the ever-floundering Kansas football program, David Beaty has boundless miles to go before proving he is capable of making the Jayhawks winners.

A reminder of the deficit in which Beaty finds himself operating surfaced Tuesday, when CBS Sports published the first installment of its Power Five conference coaches rankings.

On the worst-to-best ordered countdown of head coaches employed in the SEC, ACC, Big 12, Big Ten and Pac-12, Beaty’s name popped up at the top — that is to say, the writers at CBS judged KU’s coach as the worst among the 65 candidates.

Beaty inherited a challenging situation at Kansas when he took over in December of 2014, for sure. After an 0-12 debut season, the Jayhawks went 2-12 in Beaty’s second year on the job, prompting some hope for the future. But 2017 bottomed out with an 11-game losing streak following KU’s season-opening win over outmatched Southeast Missouri State.

Tom Fornelli of CBS Sports explained no specific guidelines were used for the rankings. Still, it’s easy to quickly dissect the list and determine how Beaty landed at No. 65. KU’s coach is 1-26 in Big 12 games and 1-32 versus Power Five competition. The only head coach from a major conference Beaty has defeated is Charlie Strong, whom Texas fired a week later. Strong resurfaced outside of the Power Five, as head coach at South Florida.

In what some thought could be a relatively competitive season for KU football, the Jayhawks not only went winless in the Big 12 in 2017, but also were outscored on average, 46.4-14.3, in league games.

Kansas finished Beaty’s third season at the helm ranked 100th or worse among 129 FBS programs in 26 of 47 statistical categories tracked on the NCAA’s official website.

“I’m not sure how my colleagues based their rankings,” Fornelli wrote, “but my approach was likely similar to theirs. I took into account all that a coach has accomplished, and then I considered which coach I'd want to hire the most were I an athletic director with deep pockets and a vacancy to fill. Then we put the results together, and we got our final rankings.”

Beaty dropped five spots from a year ago on the CBS Sports list. He finished behind Arizona State’s Herm Edwards (No. 64), Oregon State’s Jonathan Smith, Ole Miss coach Matt Luke, Indiana’s Tom Allen and Rutgers’ Chris Ash. The Jayhawks play host to Rutgers on Sept. 15 this coming fall.

The Big 12 coach closest to Beaty in the rankings was Texas Tech’s Kliff Kingsbury, at No. 49.

See the entire list at CBS Sports: Power Five coaches ranked 65-26


Bryson Stricker 4 years, 1 month ago

sick article Benton. Glad you have mastered the ability to pound a dead horse into its own grave and continually site OPINION based articles in your own Beat.

<p> produces 10x the content you have in the past few months.

We get it. You're mad that Beaty called you out and then even more mad you believed we were going to be good and we weren't. We get it Beaty is 3-33. We get it he would be fired elsewhere. For the love of god, can my local newspaper produce something worth reading twice every once in a blue moon?

Benton Smith 4 years, 1 month ago

Hi, Bryson. When a national website publishes such a list and Beaty appears on it part of my job involves writing about that.

I have no reason to be "mad" at Beaty, by the way, so please don't claim that I am. Also, how much/how in depth I'm able to write about KU football coincides with how much access the program chooses go give the media. If press conferences, open practice windows and interview sessions are brief I get what I can out of them and write. I also have to stockpile some quotes for the months ahead when players/coaches won't be available for interviews.

Thanks. Have a good one.

Joe Norgay 4 years, 1 month ago

Applaud your response Benton.

Bryson is clearly a troubled man in search of an identity as a young adult. For some reason he's chosen KU football of all things to try and gain prestige and social status from. It's incredibly bizarre. It's best just to ignore his ultra fanboy comments and wait until this phase passes for him.

[''] 4 years, 1 month ago

Benton PLEASE! Moving forward, please CALL Bryson before you are going to write an article to see if he likes the topic. Then, let him arrange the interviews for you. Then let him edit your copy before publishing. Benton, c'moonnnn! Start concocting fake news stories about how good KU will be so Bryson don't get all maddy about the stone-cold real facts you write about. Thank you for your prompt attention to this matter.

Kevin Robert Fest 4 years, 1 month ago

My God Benton please don't lower yourself and justify your article to Bryson. He clearly has an agenda

Not going to reveal names at this time because I enjoy being in DB's good graces unlike the staff here at LJW. 4/17/18~Bryson Stricker.

Matt Herrera 4 years, 1 month ago

5/8/2018 - R.I.P Bryson. The day he got owned by Benton Smith.

Kevin Robert Fest 4 years, 1 month ago

You're pathetic Bryson are opinion of someone writing a negative article is always because of some petty personal agenda Benton etc has against Beaty. THEY ARE 3-33! Jesus talk about bearing a dead horse. Get over it. Rest assured we can all be rid of you when Daddy gets fired and you go with him.

Dillon Davis 4 years, 1 month ago

Bryson's initials are perfect because everything he posts is BS.

Andy Tweedy 4 years, 1 month ago

I actually applaud your normal optimism, but if we were 33-3, I don't think we'd be complaining about "too much coverage" or "beating a dead horse. The program has pretty well earned any negative press it gets at this point. If they don't like it, start winning.

Brad Sherp 4 years, 1 month ago

Benton and Tom, please add the capability to down vote comments, so Bryson can see what a fool he is making of himself. Sure, people who are related to Coach Beaty will give a thumbs up to his content, but I think the rest of the KU fans who are still here would down vote him. Then you wouldn't even need to respond to his nonsense because it would be clear that the rest of the world disapproves of his opinion.

John Fitzgerald 4 years, 1 month ago

Beaty is a pretty obvious choice for last. It'd be hard to believe that he'd even be ranked ahead of any D-1 college coach.

John Fitzgerald 4 years, 1 month ago

Obviously not saying Beaty is the worst coach in the league, but I'm going off stat rankings and his record last year.

Michael Maris 4 years, 1 month ago

And the beat goes on and on and on......

Kenny George 4 years, 1 month ago

The JW reporting on KU football is worse than a 3-33 record. This is not news. We all know the program is down right now.

Joe Norgay 4 years, 1 month ago

If David Beaty were the best coach in college football and they made a list and he ranked #1, they'd absolutely write about it.

Just because you don't like bad news about KU football doesn't mean it's not still news.

Kenny George 4 years, 1 month ago

The horse is dead...quit beating it. This is just stale reporting.

Joe Norgay 4 years, 1 month ago

Please be more transparent in your interests.

Marius Rowlanski 4 years, 1 month ago

And yet you've taken the time to both read and comment.

4 years, 1 month ago

Great article, Benton. Keep shining the light on these con men. We will get there - one day - with a new HC. RCJH!

Kevin Robert Fest 4 years, 1 month ago

Here Benton let me try to take some of the heat off of you.

Ok Bryson here you go let's see you spin this one.

Another list that puts KU in a negative light NOT written by anyone at LWJ. What beef does this journalist have with Beaty?

4 years, 1 month ago

This is a legitimate article based on a CBS national story about Power 5 football. No one is mad at Beaty, least of all Benton Smith. It is his occupation to cover KU football, and he does it with professionalism. Further, Beaty’s ranking is not a reflection of what he inherited at KU; it is a reflection of his ability to fix it. As Tim Fornelli of CBS Sports said, “I considered which coach I'd want to hire the most were I an athletic director with deep pockets and a vacancy to fill. Then we put the results together, and we got our final rankings.” Zenger has saddled KU with two of the worst consecutive football coaching hires in NCAA history. Pick anyone on the CBS list ahead of Beaty, and we’d be better off than we are now.

Robert Brown 4 years, 1 month ago

This article basically says that before the search committee could analyze the list of candidates, Zenger gave a directive to hire Beaty. It doesn't sound like the search committee ever gave a recommendation.

Kenny George 4 years, 1 month ago

What ultimately came was a directive to Zenger.

“End the search,” Zenger said Monday, “and go get David Beaty.”

"End the search" was the directive to Zenger from the committee.

Len Shaffer 4 years, 1 month ago

Sorry, Kenny, but that doesn't cut it. Remember Truman's "The buck stops here?" Zenger is the Athletic Director, so the ultimate decision comes down to him, no matter WHAT a committee says.

Steve Corder 4 years, 1 month ago

Benton, I understand that you need material daily from which to create a story for us. Not easy.

I highly recommend the book, Phog, to gain great insight into the events which lead to a less than stellar football program. Obviously, a great read about the man and his program, of which my father played.

John Brazelton 4 years, 1 month ago

Wins and losses this season will depend a great deal on how well OL Coach Riker is able to develop a Big 12 caliber offensive line and at least three back-ups for depth and in case of injuries. Had we had experienced DBs last season, we probably would have had a chance of 1 more win early in the season and maybe also the K-State game. The defense should be the strength of this years team, providing they don't have play a majority of the game on-the-field due to three and outs by the offense. Every year is a new season and for the first time in several years, KU has the depth and experience at all positions to be competitive.

Kenny George 4 years, 1 month ago

I agree John, perhaps the JW should report on these positives.

Jerry Ryan 4 years, 1 month ago

Shouldn’t we really check with Keegan first?

Jeff Coffman 4 years, 1 month ago

Let's look 3-33 is which 2 are Dii basically. 0-6 against non conference 1-26 against conference.

Everyone talks about a horrible roster he inherited, the scholarship issues and just recently it has been disclose he is in the low 60s. Basically 4 years later he still is just as bad with the roster.

Not one position has been consistent. Bottom 100 in offense and defense all three years.

Shutting out the local media might be the cherry on the top. He just isn't good. He is making matters worse and expectations are 0 or 1 win. Come on this isn't beating a dead horse. This is a coach that signed a second contract without earning it.

Girls is starting to feel the heat, which will force the zenger outage.

Miles Nease 4 years, 1 month ago

When is this nightmare going to end?!!! Zenger, Beaty and Girod are destroying my beloved university and are being paid an ungodly sum of money, to do so.

Kenny George 4 years, 1 month ago

Beaty is among the lowest paid Power 5 coaches.

Tim Orel 4 years, 1 month ago

I think Miles' point is that he shouldn't be on the payroll at all.

Charlie Gaughn 4 years, 1 month ago

Not when you consider $/win. Take a look at that number with the coaches Zenger has hired. It's been a pretty good gig for them.

Dane Pratt 4 years, 1 month ago

He did give us a signature win over Texas and that's something.

Barry Weiss 4 years, 1 month ago

What is wrong with beating a dead horse? The true sign of how bad we are, to me, is the 46-14 average point differential on our losses. That blows the terrible 3-33 into another universe. Not only are we losing all those games, we are getting pounded into oblivion. We are not even competitive. We are a joke on ESPN. I say, beat away on that dead horse, its dead.

Jay Scott 4 years, 1 month ago

Not to worry.

The Chicken Littles and half wits assure us that many of the top coaches in the game would happily take the KU gig if only the AD was fired......

Brad Sherp 4 years, 1 month ago

The program would be at the very least competitive with a competent coach. See Mangino and Mason.

There were several more qualified coaches when Beaty was hired, but Zenger opted for a "good recruiter" over a "good coach". I am sure that the fact that Zenger would still have to pay Weis for several more years influenced his decision to pursue what was probably also the least expensive option.

Jay Scott 4 years, 1 month ago

Which coaches? Name some. You know they were willing to take the job? They've said so publicly? Please provide links to articles quoting them.

Kevin Robert Fest 4 years, 1 month ago

With the upgraded facilities maybe a decent coach with a track record would come. At least with the upgrades they are not starting from scratch. New stadium locker room weight room dorms etc then all the coach has to do is upgrade the actual football team.

Bryce Landon 4 years, 1 month ago

I can't wait to see where U of I's Kirk Ferentz ranks! ON IOWA!

**ON IOWA!**

**ON IOWA!** by Bryce Landon

Dane Pratt 4 years, 1 month ago

You go AWOL on the Jayhawks and pick Iowa as your surrogate? That’s puzzling. The Hawkeyes are not even the best team in their own state. If I was going to defect I think I could come up with something better than Iowa.

Marius Rowlanski 4 years, 1 month ago

There is something to be said for loyalty. Maybe if you graduated or worked at KU it would mean more to you.

Dirk Medema 4 years, 1 month ago

There are writers that have admitted to being offended by the athletic department and it's apparent in the word choice. I didn't initially read this article thinking it was more of the same. Came back because it was Benton who IMO is objective.

While I don't agree with Bryson's comment above I do appreciate that he does appear to have more inside knowledge from personal relationships with the players that no one else has. Even when he's over the top it seems that it is more the counter to how negative and hostile the site has become.

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