Well that went much better!
Despite missing Jalon Daniels for the second week in a row, Kansas had no problem with its
non-conference opponent, running roughshod over the Knights of Directional Florida. (Is “Central” a direction? This may be the next great RCT debate after Tyshawn’s dunk and hot dogs.)
This particular week, the scoreboard absolutely gives us an idea of just how much Kansas dominated CFU. The Jayhawks won by four touchdowns. They held Central Florida scoreless in the first half while building a 31-0 lead; I believe I saw that was the first time since 2015 (?) CFU had been held scoreless in the first half of a game.
The KU offense was absolutely humming all game long. Kansas dominated time of possession, pounding the rock all afternoon long on their way to racking up 490 yards of total offense at a 7.8 yards per play clip. Despite Central Florida’s offensive struggles in the first half, they ended up with 371 yards at a 6.1 ypp.
And oh, what a half. The scoreboard read 24-0, but it could have been worse. Central Florida had just 133 yards on 5.1 yards per play, going Punt, Punt, Punt, Fumble, on their four first half possessions.
Kansas continued to harass its opponents’ backfield while the offensive line kept our quarterback clean. Pro tip: that’s a good recipe for success in football. KU registered 4 sacks and 6 TFL, while CFU managed just 1 sack and 5 TFL. The difference? KU was running the ball. Excessively. Jason Bean threw just 12 passes for 91 yards - and KU won by 29 points. That’s insane when you look around college football these days.
KU’s top two running backs, Devin Neal and Daniel Hishaw, combined to average 9.3 yards per carry ON 31 CARRIES.
(I’m going to give you a minute to go back and read that last sentence again.)
Even if you take out Devin Neal’s 75-yard run to open the second half, they still averaged 7.1 yards per carry. Just total domination. Out of those 490 total yards, 399 of them were rush yards.
For the game, CFU was 7-12 (58.3%) on third downs, which is better than most opponents have done against KU this year, while Kansas converted 6-9 (nice, 66.7%) third down attempts.
For the most part, Kansas did whatever it wanted on offense, and particularly in the run game. Which was fitting, as legendary running back Tony Sands was inducted into the Ring of Honor at halftime alongside LB Nick Reid. In fact, the last time a Kansas team rushed for 399 yards and 5 or more TDs was Tony Sands final game against Missouri, where KU had 513 rush yards and 7 TDs. Sands himself accounted for 396 of those yards - it was so bad, KU’s offensive linemen were telling the Missouri defense which way they were going, and they still couldn’t stop it.
Special shout-out to AD Travis Goff for bringing Glen Mason and Mark Mangino back to Lawrence to see their guys enshrined in the Ring of Honor.
Oh. Speaking of Nick Reid, let’s shout out the defense real quick too. KU now has 17 sacks on the season, the most for a KU defense in its first 6 games since 2009.
Central Florida did get things figured out a bit offensively in the second half, with running back RJ Harvey finishing the game averaging 8.3 yards per carry (on 16 carries) and QB Timmy McClain completing 12-15 passes, two for touchdowns. Hopefully, that was a product of the score and the way the game unfolded, and not some kind of flaw in the defensive gameplan.
That fumbled extra point that was returned by CFU for 2-points the other way was pretty ugly, but otherwise, no major complaints.
Okay fine. How about this for ugly. Under Lance Leipold, Kansas has scored 50+ points three times against Big 12 opponents. Prior to the arrival of Leipold, KU had done that just five times since the formation of the Big 12.
Jason Bean started and played the duration, completing 8-12 passes for 91 yards, a TD, and most importantly, zero INTs.
Devin Neal ripped off 154 yards on just 12 carries, one of which went for a TD. Neal added 14 yards on one reception as well.
Daniel Hishaw added 134 yards on 19 carries with 2 TDs.
Dylan McDuffie contributed an additional 91 yards on 13 carries with 2 TDs of his own.
Luke Grimm led the Jayhawks with 41 receiving yards on 2 receptions.
Mason Fairchild had 3 receptions but just 19 yards.
Trevor Kardell and Lawrence Arnold each registered one reception.
Taiwan Berryhill was credited 8 tackles, including a sack and 1.5 TFL.
Cobee Bryant and Kenny Logan added 7 tackles each.
Austin Booker had 4 tackles, including a sack and 2 TFL, and was credited with a forced fumble.
Jayson Gilliom and Patrick Joyner were each credited with 2 tackles, including a sack each.
Seth Keller nailed all five of his PATs, but did miss his first field goal of the season, a 32-yarder. He did hit a 25-yard attempt prior to that, however.
Damon Greaves was called on just once, hitting his only punt attempt 39 yards and inside in the 20-yard line.