After four years of David Beaty football in Lawrence, new AD Jeff Long announced the football program would be moving in a different direction come season’s end. Beaty will exit the scene with the seniors in three weeks after The Jayhawks take on Texas at David Booth Kansas Memorial Stadium on November 23rd, leaving Beaty with a chance to ruin the Longhorns football program permanently.
To Beaty’s credit, he took over a diseased program left by Charlie Weis and Turner Gill. Gill poured the gas, Weis lit the match and Beaty was given a water pistol by former AD Sheahon Zenger to put it out. But it became fairly apparent over the course of the last two seasons that Beaty’s plan simply wasn’t going to bring success to Lawrence in the future.
The Big 12 was too powerful for The Jayhawks to succeed when recruiting didn’t yield many top players and in-game adjustments were often mocked and ridiculed. Having to go back-and-forth between Peyton Bender, Miles Kendrick and Carter Stanley for 2018 would give any coach a headache, but it seemed to give Beaty an aneurysm.
Getting Pooka Out of His Shell.
Pooka Williams Jr. has been a tremendous addition to this Jayhawks roster. A true freshman with real pro potential if developed well. Williams is an all-capable kind of talent, quite possibly the best player to come out of a Louisiana high school since Leonard Fournette. And while he’s made players miss on a regular basis this season, imagine a coaching scheme tailored to his strengths.
The John Fox Effect
Beaty’s time at Kansas wasn’t a complete waste of time even if he did overstay his welcome. Similar to John Fox’s three year stint with the Chicago Bears from 2015 to 2017, Beaty took over a broken locker room with no morale and a toxic attitude. But through his teachings and preachings of teamwork, the locker room became a united bunch, supportive of one another.
Beaty’s tenure won’t be remembered for bringing the team together and fixing the locker room chemistry, but as Jeff Long said yesterday in his press conference discussing the matter, Beaty will leave this program much better than he found it. Although the wins weren’t plentiful, the next head coach in Lawrence can jump right in and begin on fixing the football team, he won’t have to fix the attitude first.
As for next year, I’m expecting this program to be Miles ahead of where they were in 2018.