Did we address our needs? That's always the question on everyone's mind after signing day and I think in a lot of ways Kansas fans can feel pretty good about what the Jayhawks were able to do with a small class on a short timeline. Obviously the big question still on everyone's mind is who Charlie Weis was referring to when he made this statement:
in the not too distant future, we have some additional reinforcements that we already have agreements with that they will be coming. Really, I cannot give their names at this point because they are still at colleges and at other institutions and will be graduating in May. There are multiple guys that fall into that category as well, so as you are trying to do the math, you have to understand that several of those holes have already been filled, just with names of guys that I can't give you at this time."
Obviously whoever he is referencing and however many 'multiple' means could have a decent little impact heading into the Summer, but for now we can at least take a snapshot view of where we will be at next fall from a numbers perspective after signing day.
Projected starter: Dayne Crist (Sr 5th year)
Bench players: Turner Baty (Soph), Blake Jablonski (RS Soph), Michael Cummings (RS Fr)
Transfer not eligible: Jake Heaps (Soph, will redshirt and have 2 years remaining)
Scholarship players: 4
Projected starter: James Sims (Jr)
Scholarship players: 4
Projected starter: Nick Sizemore (RS Jr)
Bench players: Ed Fink (RS Soph)
Scholarship players: 2
Bench Players: T - Gavin Howard (RS Jr), T - Chad Kolumber (RS Soph), G/C - Damon Martin (RS FR), G/T - Bryan Peters (RS Fr), G/T - Luke Luhrsen (RS Fr), G - Josh Burgoon (Jr), G/T - Brian Beckmann (Fr), T - Sean Connolly (Fr)
Scholarship players: 12
Notes: This is probably a position where we could see some movement in terms of the 5th year transfer market based on the early speculation. In addition I think it's a spot where we're probably looking at needing a fairly big class, possibly using the JuCo route again in 2013.
Scholarship players: 5
Notes: Again, speculation out there that we could see another player brought in here as a 5th year. Overall it's a pretty uncertain position.
Mundine has been praised consistently by the last staff but couldn't break through for reasons that might prevent him from being a Weis type player. Hopefully that changes.
Brooks is a high potential type player that has only been playing football for three years now and Trent Smiley has been in the program and has just been waiting behind a pretty strong group of seniors. Either way this is an important position for Weis and Kansas so it will be a position to watch.
Bench players: Chris Omigie (RS Jr), JaCorey Shepherd (Soph), Marquis Jackson (Soph), Christian Matthews (Jr), Erick McGriff (Jr), Brian Maura (Soph), Ricki Herod (Soph), Neal Barlow (Jr), Connor Embree (Soph), Andrew Turzilli (Soph), Tre Parmalee (Fr)
Transfer currently not eligible: Justin McCay - (RS Soph)
Scholarship players: 15
Notes: This is probably one of the more difficult positions to project because if there was a spot on the field where I think we could see some Spring attrition, it would be receiver. At some point the minutes and the opportunity just isn't going to be there for some of these players and I could see some movement. If not, we've got an extremely unit and we have to figure out a way to develop some talent and utilize it.
I think Kale Pick and Justin McCay are your wild cards. Pick seems like the type of character individual that will do well with Weis. McCay could change the competition if he's ruled eligible. Either way the competition is stiff and some of these other players have to be getting to the point of competing you would think. Definitely this is a spot that will be an interesting position to watch this Spring.
Scholarship players: 8
Notes: There is some really solid potential with this group. Opurum can be effective, especially if the defensive tackle spot is improved. Agostinho showed some strong potential as a true freshman but probably played a little out of position a year ago. I think the big question is whether we will go 4-3 or 3-4. Based on the roster listing it would seem to suggest that we're going to try for a 4-3 look but I think some of that will probably be determined as Dave Campo starts to further evaluate what he has at his disposal as we head toward Spring.
I really like what Reynolds and Lewandowski could provide to the rotation if Lewandowski can return healthy and Reynolds can build off of a freshman year where he showed some nice things.
Projected starters: John Williams (RS Sr), Jordan Tavai (Jr)
Bench Players: Kevin Young (RS Jr), Ty McKinney (Jr), Keon Stowers (Jr), Randall Dent (RS Jr), Shane Smith (Jr), Tyler Holmes (Fr)
Scholarship Players: 7
Notes: Kansas needs a healthy John Williams and we need Jordan Tavai to deliver. That provides two pretty solid starters and if Kevin Young can turn a corner he can fit into the rotation along with the two other junior college transfers then this position has to move in a positive direction.
Scholarship players: 10
Notes: Willis struggled in the middle last year and Bakare had some injury issues. That's why I list Garrett and Heeney as players to watch because I think both could push for starter minutes based on what we saw last year. Hopefully we get freshman year Tharp back and Bakare stays healthy. It's a position with some good pieces, but replacing Steven Johnson could be tough. One of the biggest improvements with this group could come from any improvement with the front four.
Projected starters: Greg Brown (Sr), Tyler Patmon (Jr)
Scholarship players: 7
Scholarship players: 6
Notes: I liked what we saw out of Simmons as a freshman, but I liked what I saw out of Smith as a redshirt freshman a few years ago. I hope he gets back to that place.
Total Scholarship players: 80
That leaves five spots for 5th years transfers or late signings in this class
Departing after 2012: 15
Early recruiting class # for 2013: 20
Obviously this is fluid based on transfers, but we're at 20 if all five remaining scholarships either go unfilled or to a 5th year. Any late high school or junior college signings lower that number.