2012 Kansas Jayhawks Football Preview
2011 Record: 2-10 (0-9 Big 12)
Head Coach: Charlie Weis, first season (35-27 overall)
Projected Returning Starters: 15
Spring Game: April 28th (Blue 45 White 0)
Notes: Kansas has always been a basketball school. Go to Lawrence and the cheers of “Rock, Chalk, Jayhawk” you hear are generally geared towards Roy Williams and the basketball team. That doesn’t mean Kansas football hasn’t had its share of success. Under then-coach Mark Mangino the Jayhawks went to four bowl games in eight seasons, including back-to-back seasons of eight-plus wins. In 2007, Kansas posted a mark of 12-1, with the lone loss coming to rival Missouri. Kansas won the Orange Bowl that season, finishing seventh in the AP and Coaches Polls. Following Mangino’s resignation at the conclusion of the 2009 season, Kansas football went back to its familiar spot as conference door mat, compiling a record of 5-19 in two seasons under Turner Gill. Its hard to argue what was worse under Gill – the record or the attendance. With Gill’s dismissal, the Jayhawks turned to Charlie Weis, known offensive guru and former Notre Dame head coach.
BVTSB Take: The hire of Weis as head coach is supposed to put Kansas football on the map, according to the Jayhawk Athletic Director. Don’t expect that to happen this season. The defense has been awful in Lawrence in recent years, so don’t expect it to change overnight. Even then, the offense is likely to struggle as Weis implements his system. Kansas enters the season with a lack of experience at the quarterback position, from a continuity standpoint – Jordan Webb has graduated. Yet, the Jayhawks are largely believed to have an upgrade under center, with Notre Dame transfer, and Weis recruit, Dayne Crist taking over. Crist is a graduate student who is eligible to play immediately. Kansas returns starting running back James Sims, who accounted for over 700 yards on the ground and nearly half of the Kansas rushing touchdowns. D.J. Beshears and Kale Pick, Kansas’s top receiving leaders in 2011, return this season. The pair combined for over 700 yards receiving and a third of the receiving touchdowns. Kansas has a very forgiving non-conference schedule in 2012, playing host to South Dakota State and Rice and visiting Northern Illinois. Don’t be surprised to see Kansas start 3-1 (Kansas plays TCU between the Rice and Northern Illinois games). But that is likely the best it will get for KU, as the Jayhawks will continue their struggles in 2012. A conference win or two isn’t out of the question, as a home game against Iowa State is winnable.
2012 Early Projection: 3-9
To see the 2012 Big 12 composite schedule, click here.
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