Easily head football coach David Beaty's best Kansas spring
For the first time in David Beaty’s tenure as head football coach at Kansas, the spring exhibition will be played and scored like a game. That’s good news because it stands as evidence of greater depth in the program than during his first two springs.
The next thing to study is whether the Jayhawks have more star-power. One way to do that is to look at the first five selections from each team in Wednesday’s draft between Tony Hull-coached Team Jayhawks and Kenny Perry-led Team KU and then guess at what names would have been selected two years ago if the top picks were from the same positions.
Team Jayhawks (possible pick from the spring of 2015):
1 - Steven Sims, wide receiver (Rodriguez Coleman): Long and fast, Coleman didn’t last into the fall and finished his KU career with 11 catches in two seasons.
2 - Hakeem Adeniji, left tackle (Larry Mazyck): Big Physique eventually played his way out of the lineup, starting just four games as a senior.
3 - Hasan Defense, cornerback (Greg Allen): Moved to safety and had a solid career, mostly as a second-teamer.
4 - Ryan Schadler, wide receiver (Tre’ Parmalee): Parmalee led KU receivers in catches (41) yards (599) and touchdowns (three).
5 - Derrick Neal, nickel back (Tevin Shaw): Contrast in these two players shows the different ways the position can be used. Shaw was a strong tackler, but didn’t have Neal’s coverage ability because he wasn’t as fast, quick or agile.
Team KU (possible pick from the spring of 2015):
1 - Dorance Armstrong, defensive end (Ben Goodman): Armstrong was KU’s first unanimous first-team All-Big 12 selection last season. Goodman was one of the better players on the 2015 team and earned conference honorable mention.
2 - Daniel Wise, defensive tackle (Daniel Wise): A 260-pound prospect who had not yet played a game two springs ago, Wise was chosen second-team All-Big 12 by the Associated Press in 2016 and checks in at 290 pounds.
3 - Mike Lee, safety (Isaiah Jonson): Taking advantage of the graduate-transfer rule, Johnson left after that spring and spent his final season as a starter at South Carolina.
4 - Ben Johnson, tight end (Kent Taylor): Johnson will be used as a tight end and blocking back. Taylor had good speed for a tight end but never got the hang of blocking.
5 - Taylor Martin, running back (Corey Avery): After losing the trust of teammates, Avery was dismissed from the program.
Michael Cummings, blasted into retirement on a spring-game tackle that shredded his knee, and Montell Cozart were the top two quarterbacks on that team, Peyton Bender and Carter Stanley on this one.
No way of knowing what motivational factors played a part in the 10 players chosen with the first selections in Wednesday’s draft. Were some players rewarded for giving maximum effort and making improvements and others omitted as a way of showing that effort and attention to detail win the day? Probably, but it was a fun, well-executed exercise.