I'm liking me some KU Football.
I know everybody is an expert on College Football. You know what games KU will win and lose. You already know the outcome of the season.
Yet I can’t help but feel KU Football is on the rise. No they’re not going to be Alabama, Ohio St. Michigan or even Kstate. However they looked good today, even with the mistakes. They looked dominate. They looked like a team on the rise. They looked like a team that I’m going to tune in to every game, and not just expect a loss.
KU Football is heading in the right direction.
My strongest impression of Saturday’s game wasn’t about the team at all. We had a great crowd for the game and seeing Coach Mangino, Todd Reesing, Aquib Talib and the others was great. It was the biggest crowd I’ve seen in 5 years and most of the students were gone because of the holiday. The beer garden in the bowl is pretty stupid though. I like it when the bowl is full of fans, not a two story structure that blocks the bowl.
KU football was underwhelming. If SE Mo really is the 7th best team in the 9 team Ohio Conference, we’ve got a long ways to go to be competitive. Peyton Bender made some passes, but he also missed some throws-badly. Our defense didn’t dominate the Redhawks like I thought we should. Our offensive line didn’t open a single lane for the running backs all evening. Plenty of wood still needs to be sawed on both sides of the ball. After tolerating the insulting game Beaty played with naming a starting QB, my biggest hope is that Beaty and Meacham chose not to show their cards against the Redhawks and will roll out the real offense next week. But hey, we’ve got a keeper in Dom Williams. Let’s build a running game around that guy, coach.
The passing game was pretty good but KU better get some sort of running game; 73 yards in 25 attempts will not cut it. Also, 3 turnovers against a below average SEMO team is not good and needs to be addressed immediately or else it will cost winnable games down the road. It was not a bad outing but it was not a good one either; I will give it a solid C.
@stoptheflop With KU’s defense, they’re not going to be a dominant defense, they’re built to be a bend but don’t break defense because that’s what’s proven to be most effective against spread offense. Yardage is never going to be the best measuring stick of this defense. 3rd down %, Red Zone TD’s, TO’s, and PPG are going to be tgthe e measuring sticks.
YPG on both defense and offense has always been the most overrated stat in football to me.
My overall impression of the game is that the defense is about what I thought they’d be. Got plenty of pressure on the QB which is just as important as sacks because that forces a lot of inaccurate throws which we sae plenty of last night from the SEMO QB.
As far as the offense, get used to a minimal running game. KU is moving more towards the Mike Leach style of offense which means about 75% passing and 25% running. Those percentages will change based on scores of games.
Peyton Bender looked okay last night. He was making good reads which is encouraging, I think there was only 2-3 times he made ill-advised passes. The bigger issue with Bender was his accuracy. You can’t overthrow intermediate routes in the middle of the field as those will get picked off by safeties playing deep. You so can’t throw behind receivers on slants as those will get picked as well.
The OLine appeared improved from last year as Bender had plenty of time to make his reads, but we’ll see as the level of competition improves next week.
Penalties were an acceptable level. I’ll take 5 for 49 yards every game right now.
The turnovers are the biggest concern. Both of Bender’s picks were completely on Bender making an innacurate pass and making a bad decision on the other. The fumble is one that should never happen and hopefully we don’t see Tyler Patrick returning kicks or punts again this year.
Moos was just as solid as last year punting so no worries on that aspect. Punt coverage is another story though. STAY IN YOUR LANES! KU will give up multiple punt returns this year unless the coverage unit gets it together in a hurry. Kick off coverage was good on the one chance I saw. Speaking of that, WE HAVE A KICKER! Rui sending kickoffs through the endzone, looking very solid on PAT’s and on his FG attempt. His leg also looked good enough that KU should feel comfortable sending him out anywhere within 45 yards. And the best part is that he’s only a freshman so hopefully we have a solid, and more importantly, reliable kicking game for the next 4 years.
As for the Big 12 as a whole, Texas Tech probably had the most impressive win this weekend unless WVU beats VT. Eastern Washington is a very good team (#4 in FCS and beat WSU last year) and Tech hammered them.
Biggest disappointment has to be a toss up between Texas and Baylor. I think a lot of people were overestimating what UT would be this year, as 7-8 wins would have been a very good year for them, but now getting to bowl eligibility looks like it’ll be a struggle again for them.
Baylor, wow! Trailing Liberty basically the entire game. I think everyone knew a decline was coming, but I don’t think anybody expected it to start this year, but this is just a continuation of their fall off a cliff last season so they may be going us and ISU down in the bottom third of the Big 12.
@Texas-Hawk-10 I always appreciate your knowledgeable input. I’m glad you saw more positives than I did. The offensive line gave Bender plenty of time to throw. Dom Williams found space to run. The defensive line did put pressure on Hosket. And the kicking game looked good all around. But, there’s plenty of film being watched and critically evaluated today. I hope we improve a lot by next Saturday.
I would have liked to see KU be more physically dominant in this game. Part of the struggle ths last few years has been a lack of Big 12 caliber athletes. They have made strides in that area, but still aren’t where they need to be as far as being able to athletically blow away a team that should be physically overmatched.
That said, improvement is apparent. KU should compete in every game this season, although wins will be tough to come by. I see a max of four wins, but 2 or 3 is perfectly acceptable.
This season is about progress. So far, so good.
I never like to put to much stock in the first game. As it so emotional, and the players feel that. Mistakes are made. The Second game will be a tell tale for me. Well see. Yet I’m liking what I’m seeing. Defense seems to be able to get after the QB, and the offense looks like it can indeed put points on the board. Also the talent seems to be there. On KU’s first couple of TD’s one was a great one handed catch in the end zone. The other was a must catch, but what happened after the catch was a thing of beauty. It shows me KU does indeed have some play makers.
I too was a little worried about the running game. Yet I do believe @Texas-Hawk-10 nailed it in explaining that KU is going to “run” an air it out type offense.
I haven’t looked at the schedule (I’m a game to game type of person) Yet I wouldn’t be surprised to see this KU team win 6 games this year and claim a bowl bid.
I finally found a box score of the Redhawks game. The announced attendance of 32,000 felt much bigger. The only noticeable empty seats were in the bowl behind the ill-advised beer garden and in the two sections on the east side for the Redhawk fans. Only about 12 Redhawk fans bothered to attend. If you haven’t been to a game lately, it really is quite a show. There’s a lot of excitement and merriment at Memorial Stadium. The huge posters on the outside of the stadium are great. Good food too; Way more choices than just the old hotdog or cheeseburger choices.
The time of possession stat and the snaps from scrimmage both favored the Redhawks. 35 min to 25 min tells me we’ve got a lot of work to do on offense to give the defense a break. Maybe our quick scoring drives on 3 series was the difference here. The Redhawks ran 15 more offensive plays than we did. The defense stopped 14/20 3rd down attempts and 3/4 4th down attempts.
Next Saturday against the Chippewas will be a good indication of our level of competiveness. It took 2 OTs for Central Michigan to beat Rhode Island, so it would appear they too will be looking to improve. RCJHF
@stoptheflop When a pass first team plays a more balanced or run first team, the pass first team is rarely going to win the time of possession battle.
@Texas-Hawk-10 My concern over time of possession is just that in the last several years our defense has simply worn down by the late third quarter due to all the 3 and outs by our offense. Last year we were nearly even with O State until late in the third Q, when they went on a scoring run. I hope our better depth helps us defend all game long.
I see that Central Michigan presents a more balanced offense with 50 rushes and 49 passes against Rhode Island Saturday. All the central players on offense for Central Mich are seniors, the QB and the top two running backs and wide receivers. It’s going to be one tough ballgame on Saturday.