Another year, another loss in Lincoln and yes this one stings a little more than usual. Kansas brought it's best team in years into the frigid temperatures of Lincoln Nebraska but the result remained the same as an up and down season continues for the Jayhawks and their fans.
Looking at this from a football standpoint it's hard to sit here after forcing three turnovers and having a couple big calls go our way and feel like we were thoroughly beaten but that's the way it is. Kansas' Orange Bowl season from a year ago has given way to a much tougher schedule filled with highs and lows and the one game I have been pointing to since the beginning of the season with concern has turned into the potential backbreaker. Yes Kansas will regardless the outcomes of the final two games finish bowl eligible and in all liklihood play in a bowl, but it's awful frustrating to realize how much more work there is to be done.
The offense is it's own worst enemy, when they aren't getting penalties or giving up sacks they move the ball fairly effectively. That said the offensive line was a shell of it's self compared to last week. Granted the level of competition increased but I anticipated last week was a sign of things beginning to gel, that appears not to be the case.
The defense forced three turnovers and played pretty strong in the first half but anytime you give up 500+ yards of offense it's hard to win a game. It's clear that on this side of the ball we still need to develop the talent and athletes to compete week in and week out in the offense happy Big12.
Special teams is a joke...this is the area where some heads need to roll. Our returner from last year who was so effective looks like he's playing football for the first time in his life. The punting game was horrible even taking into account the cold weather. Finally kickoffs, your offense goes down scores a go ahead TD and you manage to squib the kickoff 15 yards into the arms of a Husker who then gives them the ball at the 50 with little or no effort. This is setting yourself up for failure and the special teams or not so special teams has been doing this all year.
Despite the negatives I never felt good about this one from the beginning of the year. Going into Lincoln and getting a win is not easy and that's why I felt the South Florida game was so critical. So here we are staring 6-6 in the face, my hope is the staff and players can man up for one final effort and beat someone they will be a dog against in either Texas or Missouri.
Even without it though this team has still gone to back to back bowls we are building a program and that takes time. The expectations probably rose quicker than they should have because of last years good fortune but we will be practicing into December, getting the young guys extra reps and continue to "saw wood."
This was a tough one fellow Jayhawks but let's try to stay positive about the future and perhaps bring our expectations back to reality a bit while supporting this team for the remainder of the year.
Rock Chalk Jayhawk and good game to our Husker foes.