Last year at this time, sportsbooks had win totals out for most college football teams, but right now I can only find the top-20 or so. That means the best I can do right now is Athlon’s pre-spring rankings that came out back on March 6.
So with the preseason rankings in mind, let’s make some predictions three months too early. I’ll just look at the noncon games today, and we’ll get to the Big 12 games later on this summer.
Athlon Preseason Rank in parentheses. Kansas is 106 out of 130, and the second-worst P5 team. Rutgers is 107, while the next closes P5 team is Oregon State at 97. K-State is the next-lowest ranked Big 12 team at 62.
vs Indiana State (FCS)
The Sycamores went from 0-11 in 2017 to 7-4 in 2018, which included knocking off a ranked Illinois State team and going into OT with top-5 South Dakota State. I won’t delve into Indiana State any more than this at this time, but this still appears to be an FCS team that Kansas should handle with relative ease. They don’t jump off the page to me the way Nicholls did last year, and they aren’t a perennial top-10 FCS squad. KU should be OK here, especially if Les Miles is the coach we all think he is. Kansas 48, Indiana State 17.
vs Coastal Carolina (125)
Kansas will look to go 2-0 as the Chanticleers of Coastal Carolina make their way to Lawrence. This is a matchup where I think a coach like Les Miles can make a difference. With these two schools are ranked similarly and Kansas at home, this is where we should be able to see KU’s inherent advantages of being a P5 school in coaching, training, and recruiting. If this game is close into the fourth quarter, don’t expect much out of the final 10 games of the season. Kansas 41, Coastal Carolina 24
@ Boston College (64)
The Eagles return their QB, top RB, and top WR from 2018, but appear to be looking for some playmakers on defense to replace some departed seniors. The Eagles spent four weeks in the AP Top-25 in 2018 en route to a 7-5 campaign, but never beat another top-25 team. Of those seven wins, the only lopsided victories were UMass and Holy Cross. Kansas might be able to give BC a little more fight that what we’ve seen out of typical Kansas road teams over the previous 10 years, but it’s unlikely the Jayhawks are ready to go out and beat other P5 teams on the road. Boston College 38, Kansas 28.
Well, at least I’m not predicting a winless season like I did last year (although I am taking as much credit as anyone will give me for getting Nicholls State right). What do you think KU’s record will be after three games?