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Thread: PH'15: Meet the 2020 Kansas Jayhawks

  1. #1
    Booster JeffHCross's Avatar
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    PH'15: Meet the 2020 Kansas Jayhawks

    After last year's season preview was lost at the publisher, the KU staff made sure to send it early this year.

    Coach Jerry Brawner enters his eighth season (how time flies) at the helm of the Kansas Jayhawks, and have finally broken through the glass ceiling, winning the Big XII in their first season in the conference. They return a lot of key pieces for their senior year, including their quarterback, top four receivers, and both starting linebackers for their final shot at a collegiate title. Can the senior leaders accomplish what they didn't last season?

    Quarterbacks
    Player Pos. Ht, Wt Year Rating Comp Att Yards TD INT Comp
    Rate
    Yards/
    Att.
    Sacks Sack Rate
    Mark Barrow QB Grad 1 1 14 100.0% 14.0
    Adam Maynard QB 6-1, 194 Sr 99 316 413 3827 33 29 76.5% 9.3 13 3.1%
    Brad Johnson QB 6-4, 214 So 87 6 9 103 0 2 66.7% 11.4
    Orlando Woods QB 6-1, 198 Jr 87 2 2 16 0 0 100.0% 8.0
    Kansas's offensive attack last season was seemingly all one way or another. All pass or all run. Not every offensive performance was positive, mind you, but when the offense was rolling the Jayhawks got balance in the most unusual way. Senior quarterback Adam Maynard, a preseason All-Big XII selection, is the catalyst for the offense, setting a school record for passing yards in 2018, then nearly matching that record again in 2019. Maynard has struggled like his predecessor Ryan Willis with interceptions, notably throwing four interceptions in an early loss to Arkansas State. If he can avoid throwing to the other team, Maynard has the arm and accuracy to get the ball to his speedy weapons on the outside.

    Backup QBs Brad Johnson and Orlando Woods return, and both are speedy runners that are different types of players than the starter Maynard.

    Preseason Hype: QB Adam Maynard (All-Big XII)


    Offensive Skill Players
    Player Pos. Ht, Wt Year Rating Touches Rushing
    Yards
    Receiving
    Yards
    Return
    Yards
    TD Yards/
    Carry
    Yds/
    Catch
    % of Team
    Touches
    % of Team
    Yards
    George Glover TE Grad 49 527 3 10.8 6.9% 8.8%
    Anthony Chavez HB Grad 32 199 14 4 6.4 14.0 4.5% 3.5%
    Anthony Brothers TE Grad
    Kyle Kilpatrick WR 6-3, 194 Sr 97 141 16 1736 760 20 1.1 13.7 19.7% 29.1%
    Todd Jones WR 6-5, 220 Sr 86 32 289 2 9.0 4.5% 4.8%
    Nick Newman WR 6-2, 203 Sr 91 20 250 566 4 12.5 2.8% 4.2%
    Aaron Hart HB 6-2, 195 So 83 232 1092 87 18 4.9 7.9 32.4% 19.6%
    Zach Minor WR 6-0, 206 Sr 90 45 590 1 2 13.1 6.3% 9.8%
    Nate Mack WR 6-3, 212 So 83 34 399 5 11.7 4.8% 6.6%
    Jeff Nash WR 6-4, 225 Jr 82 3 42 81 14.0 0.4% 0.7%
    Thomas Morris HB 5-10, 221 Jr 81
    TJ Gray TE 6-6, 249 So 87
    1
    Sean Lambert WR 6-4, 196 Fr 77 Redshirt
    Bryan Howard HB/WR 5-11, 182 Fr 85 Redshirt
    Randy Stuckey FB 6-1, 235 Fr 78
    Lonnie Garrison TE 6-3, 261 Fr 73
    Quarterbacks QB


    127 764 10 10 6.1 10.0 17.8% 12.9%
    Four senior wide receivers sit at the top of the offensive skill depth chart. Kyle Kilpatrick, a preseason All-American, is the top weapon for the Jayhawks, and will get one final chance to live up to his billing as a speedy gamebreaker that can affect a game through the air and on the ground. Kilpatrick set a school record with 1736 yards receiving last season, but only ran the ball 14 times with barely 1 yard per carry. If the Jayhawks can get him in space this year, they could finally have the nationally recognized weapon they've been trying to find.

    Nick Newman is the #2 receiver for the Jayhawks, but last year he struggled lining up outside. Todd Jones, a 6-5 receiver with nearly the same speed at Newman, is better suited to being an outside target, and that will give Newman the ability to return to the slot where he thrived in 2018.

    Halfback Aaron Hart became the second 1,000 yard rusher under Coach Jerry Brawner. Hart averaged nearly 5 yards per carry last season, and was honored with preseason All-Big XII recognition. Hart will return as the feature back this year, but will also be expected to share some of the running load with talented freshman Bryan Howard.

    Preseason Hype: WR Kyle Kilpatrick (AA-1st), HB Aaron Hart (All-Big XII)


    Slobs
    Player Pos. Ht, Wt Year Rating Car. Starts '19 Pancakes '19 Sacks
    Marcus Rush RG
    Grad
    3 1
    Marco Clark RT Grad 3 1
    Jim Freeman LT 6-5, 292 Fr 83 Redshirt

    Paul Barber LG 6-4, 294 So 89 14 14 1
    Will Marshall C 6-7, 321 Sr 98 14 11 1
    Mike Castillo RG 5-11, 338 Sr 95 24 13 5
    Dionte Long RT 6-5, 323 Sr 97 40 11 2
    Quincy Johnson LT 6-3, 272 Jr 86 11 3 2
    Brandon Kendrick LG 6-7, 272 Jr 85
    Seth Thompson LG 6-6, 316 Fr 81 Redshirt

    Tony Colvin C 6-2, 292 So 91

    Calvin Mason RT 6-0, 286 So 80


    All five significant starters from last season return to the Jayhawks offensive line, though only four are expected to start this season after freshman Jim Freeman beat junior Quincy Johnson during spring practice this season. Three seniors (Will Marshall, Mike Castillo and Dionte Long) will anchor the center and right side of the line, bringing talent and experience to that side. Sophomore guard Paul Barber, who started all 14 games last season, returns to the left side as well. Johnson will be the swing tackle, leveraging his experience as a backup. Backup center Tony Colvin may also be considered as a swing player, or may even get some starting time. If the left tackle begins to struggle, starting center Will Marshall, who was originally recruited as a tackle, could move out wide and move Colvin to the starting spot to leverage the talent of both.

    Preseason Hype: T Dionte Long (AA-1st), C Will Marshall (All-Big XII), G Mike Castillo (All-Big XII)


    Defensive Line
    Player Pos Ht, Wt Year Rating Tackles % of Team TFL Sacks Int PBU FF FumRec Def Score
    Michael Massey DT Grad 29 4.4% 15 6 3 1
    Tyrone Jenkins DT Grad 8 1.2% 4 1
    Matt Freeman DE 6-2, 248 So 85 40 6.1% 25 21 2
    Brandon Rushing DT 6-2, 307 Jr 92 Redshirt
    Tyler Jackson DT 6-2, 258 So 85 1 0.2% 1 1 1
    Kenneth Holley DE 6-5, 273 Sr 92 23 3.5% 15 4


    1
    Terrell Rich DE 6-4, 249 So 84 2 0.3% 2 1
    Jason Hardin DE 6-4, 252 Sr 89 2 0.3% 1
    Mike Smith DE 6-3, 224 Jr 85 2 0.3% 2 1
    Scott Davis DT 6-5, 284 Jr 84
    Keith Abrams DT 6-2, 285 Fr 80 Redshirt
    The top two defensive tackles have left Lawrence, but end Matt Freeman returns after a record setting freshman season, which saw him break the school record for sacks that was set just the season before. Freeman, end Kenneth Holley and now departed tackle Michael Massey were a disruptive force last season, combining for 31 sacks. Massey's production inside should be replaced by Brandon Rushing, who was redshirted last season to preserve a year of eligibility. Rushing now has two seasons remaining as the undisputed starter inside. Sophomore Tyler Jackson, who recorded a strip sack last season in very limited work, will be the other DT in four man lines.

    Preseason Hype: DE Matt Freeman (AA-2nd team)


    Linebackers
    Player Pos Ht, Wt Year Rating Tackles % of Team TFL Sacks Int PBU FF FumRec Def Score
    Mike Gray MLB Grad 77 11.8% 27 4 1 1 1
    Paul Doty OLB Grad 33 5.0% 8 4 2 1 TD
    Jesse Robinson MLB 6-2, 247 Sr 96 91 13.9% 14 2 1 6
    1 1 TD
    Nathan Wright OLB 6-4, 246 Sr 97 Medical







    Andrew Walker OLB 6-3, 217 So 84 19 2.9% 1


    1

    Matt Murphy MLB 6-2, 246 So 76 6 0.9%






    Steve Todd OLB 6-1, 222 So 72 1 0.2%






    Antwan Smith MLB 5-11, 221 Fr 84 Redshirt







    Tristan Wilson OLB 6-1, 240 Fr 79 Redshirt






    Kansas entered last season needing to replace Travis Bridges, their star middle linebacker, and lost outside linebacker Nathan Wright to a season-ending knee injury. With two stars being replaced, a dropoff was expected. Instead, middle linebacker Jesse Robinson turned into a star himself, recording a team-leading 91 tackles, which is the highest total returning in the Big XII this season. Robinson returns, and with Wright returning to be next to him in the Jayhawks' base 4-2-5, the linebacker corps will be a strength this year. Mike Gray and Paul Doty, last season's starting outside linebackers, were both NFL draft picks, leaving sophomore Andrew Walker to be the next outside linebacker in the rotation. Redshirt freshmen Antwan Smith and Tristan Wilson will both be part of the rotation as well.

    Preseason Hype: MLB Jesse Robinson (All-Big XII)


    Secondary
    Player Pos Ht, Wt Year Rating Tackles % of Team TFL Sacks Int PBU FF FumRec Def Score
    Donte Harrison FS
    Grad
    60 9.2% 1 1 5
    Steven Willis SS
    Grad
    70 10.7% 3 2 3 1 1
    Damon Gibson CB Grad 47 7.2% 2 3 6
    Albert Holmes SS Grad 6 0.9%
    Clint Smith CB 6-2, 195 Sr 97 35 5.3% 1 2 9
    Taylor Wheatley CB 5-10, 184 Jr 93 36 5.5% 1 5 2 1 TD
    J.R. Malone FS 6-1, 195 So 82 2 0.3%





    Mark Higgins SS 5-11, 170 So 88 Redshirt
    Lance Quinn STAR 5-11, 166 Fr 82 Redshirt
    Jimmy Bradley CB 5-10, 183 So 88 24 3.7% 1 1
    Trevor Rucker FS 6-2, 179 Jr 85 11 1.7%






    Larry Fields SS 6-1, 209 Jr 88 23 3.5% 3 1 3
    Kyle Kilpatrick WR/CB 6-3, 194 Sr 97 7 1.1%

    1


    1 TD
    Alvin Mason CB 6-1, 183 Fr 79 Redshirt






    Brandon Gibbs FS 6-0, 173 Fr 78 Redshirt






    We've discussed the returning strength at practically every position this season for Kansas ... and now we get to the secondary. Two starting safeties, and last year's nickelback, have moved on. The Jayhawks staff is used to performing rebuilds on the secondary, but with early games against rival Kansas State and top-ranked Arkansas State, the new faces in the secondary has very little room for error as they gel early in the season. J.R. Malone, a prototypical safety, is expected to roam centerfield as the free safety. Mark Higgins and Lance Quinn, two young players that are basically clones of each other, are expected to man both strong safety positions, and both bring cornerback-type skills to the strong safety position.

    The only top returning players in the secondary are both starting cornerbacks, and if Clint Smith could manage to actually catch balls this season he has a chance to set a record for interceptions. Taylor Wheatley, a preseason All-Big XII selection, ended the season impressively, so continuing that momentum will be important for the secondary this year.

    Behind the starters, sophomore Jimmy Bradley will slide from dimeback to nickelback, with redshirt freshman Alvin Mason expected to play dimeback. Larry Fields, who started last season as the STAR but was beaten in spring practice, may play a role as a nickel or dimeback.

    Preseason Hype: CB Taylor Wheatley (All-Big XII)


    Specialists
    Player Pos Ht, Wt Year Rating PAT FG FG Pct Punts Net Avg TB P I20
    Nate Sanders K 6-0, 218 So 93 72 15 100% 21 42.4 9
    Marc Hines P 5-10, 237 Jr 92
    8 44.4 43 K/O 3
    Starting placekicker Nate Sanders, a preseason All-American honoree, returns and will take over kickoff duties this year, after a perfect kicking record last season. Punter Marc Hines also returns, and looks to improve on his 44.4 yard average from last season.

    Preseason Hype: K Nate Sanders (AA-2nd)
    Twitter: @3YardsandACloud

  2. #2
    Heisman skipwondah33's Avatar
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    Gamertag: skipwondah33 PSN ID: skipwondah33 skipwondah33's OriginID: skipwondah33
    Team looks very solid

    Defense is stout on every level. Strong OL too, resembles the one I inherited in Wisconsin.

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