The time has come to begin drinking the kool aid! Let’s see what we have to be optimistic about regarding the upcoming Kansas football season.
A New Hope
The embarrassment that was Jeff Long era is over, and with it goes Les Miles. In their places stand a new AD in Travis Goff and a new football coach in Lance Leipold. By all accounts, this will be a complete culture change not only in the Anderson Football Complex, but also in the administration, which was in desperate need of such change.
Leipold has retained half of Miles’ staff, but brought his offensive and defensive coordinators with him. The two coordinators, OC Andy Kotelnicki and DC Brian Borland, have been with Leipold since his D3 Wisconsin-Whitewater days. They look to bring some stability to a Kansas staff that is on its third head coach in the last four years, and I believe its 7th (!!!) offensive coordinator in that same span (2018 Meacham, Beaty - 2019 Lindsey, Koenning, Dearmon - 2020 Dearmon - 2021 DeBord, Kotelnicki).
The Force Awakens
Returning players such as DE Steven Parker, S Kenny Logan, and WR Luke Grimm should be poised to become playmakers for Kansas this fall. If TE Will Huggins, WR Jamahl Horne, or anyone else can realize some of their potential as well, the Jayhawks could be unexpectedly not terrible on both sides of the ball.
Although the transfer portal hit KU hard this offseason, it has also been a blessing. Leipold has brought in a quarterback, three offensive linemen, four defensive linemen, two linebackers, and a defensive back, all of whom should get plenty of playing time, and many of whom will step in right away and be starters.
The Rise of Skywalker
Speaking of transfers, is North Texas transfer Jason Bean (pictured above) the quarterback of the future? Well since this is the optimistic article, I’ll tell you yes, of course he is. The second he stepped on campus, he became one of the fastest players on the roster, and in 8 games last year, he posted a 14-5 TD-INT ratio for the Mean Green.
If this coaching staff can figure out a way to get Bean into space and/or give him any time at all in the pocket, his 54% completion percentage should dramatically improve. That’s easier said that done, but keep in mind, no quarterback can be as accurate as Imperial Stormtroopers.
What did I miss that you’re optimistic about? Tell me in the comments below.