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KU football avoids shutout, but drops homecoming matchup with Texas Tech, 41-14

Texas Tech wide receiver Erik Ezukanma (13) runs into the end zone for a touchdown against Kansas during the second quarter of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Oct. 16, 2021, in Lawrence, Kan. (AP Photo/Ed Zurga)

A pair of touchdowns in the final minute of the fourth quarter against Texas Tech did little to improve the mood of Kanas football head coach Lance Leipold Saturday.

With his Jayhawks coming off a bye week, Leipold expected a more competitive game than what transpired during a 41-14 homecoming defeat at David Booth Kansas Memorial Stadium, in front of an announced crowd of 25,106.

“That was disappointing,” Leipold said of his team not only giving up 41 points, but also being shut out for the first 59 minutes.

The KU offense didn’t even reach the red zone until just more than a minute remained in the fourth quarter and the backups were on the field. The first of two late-game drives, led by third-string running back Amauri Pesek-Hickson (five carries, 28 yards) and backup quarterback Miles Kendrick (4-for-7 passing, 48 yards, two touchdowns), helped the Jayhawks avoid a scoreless outing. Kendrick found Luke Grimm in the end zone for a 14-yard touchdown with only 56 seconds remaining in the blowout for the first score of the day.

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Box score: Texas Tech 41, KU football 14 ( .PDF )

KU junior quarterback Jason Bean couldn’t replicate the highlight flashes of previous games, either through the air or on the ground. Bean finished 11-for-21 passing, for 80 yards with one interception, and ran five times for 14 yards. KU’s offense totaled 273 yards in the shutout.

Leipold thought the defensive looks Tech gave Bean led to some of the issues, and from what he saw from the sideline it seemed the QB needed to have a little more patience and see some plays all the way through.

“It definitely wasn’t his best game,” the coach said. “We need to be better in the passing game holistically.”

With so many possessions being unproductive, Leipold added, neither Bean nor the offense ever could gain some consistency or confidence.

“That seems to be a repeating thing,” Leipold said after KU (1-5 overall, 0-3 Big 12) lost its fifth game in a row and again suffered a lopsided Big 12 loss.

The KU offense actually moved the chains a handful of times (five) in the third quarter after even doing that seemed like a chore in the second quarter. But the longest play of the third — a Bean pass to Steven McBride — went just 15. On the first three possessions of the second half, KU punted twice and turned the ball over on downs as Tech (5-2, 2-2), which finished with 438 yards of offense, maintained its dominance, padding its lead to 38-0.

Much of Leipold’s disappointment, he said afterward, stemmed from the score in general and what he deemed a crucial second quarter, which Tech won, 17-0.

“A lot of different things went wrong there,” Leipold said.

What was a manageable seven-point hole after the opening 15 minutes devolved into a 24-0 deficit for the Jayhawks by halftime.

The Red Raiders, who outgained KU 249-72 in total yardage over the course of the first two quarters, marched down the field for touchdowns on each of their final two drives of the second quarter.

The KU offense, meanwhile, didn’t come close to keeping pace. The Jayhawks picked up just one first down the entire second quarter, gaining only 20 yards total on 11 snaps.

Bean’s timing and rhythm were off throughout the first half, and he went 4-for-9 with one interception. Even so, Tech defensive backs had a few chances to add to their takeaway totals on those other incompletions, and the Jayhawks were fortunate to have just one turnover in the first half.

Representing the offense during KU’s postgame media session, freshman running back Devin Neal (15 carries, 54 yards), said the Jayhawks simply failed to execute.

“We practiced for the two weeks to come in prepared. And we had a game plan going in, and we would’ve liked to execute it a little bit better. But all we can really do is just move on to the next day and keep getting better,” Neal said.

The Jayhawks’ lone big play of the first half came courtesy of the defense, with veteran safety Kenny Logan Jr. reading a deep shot down the left sideline from Colombi. Logan swooped in for the interception near the KU 6-yard line, and went 22 yards the other direction on his takeaway before being forced out of bounds.

But that was the only time during Tech’s first eight possessions that the Red Raiders failed to score.

Said Logan of the defense’s problems: “We’ve just got to get guys off the field. We’ve got to make sure we’re executing at a high level.”

Logan’s pick alone wouldn’t turn the tide for KU. In fact, just three plays later, Bean returned the favor, throwing an interception on the first play of the second quarter — a third-and-8 for the KU offense on its own 30-yard line. Bean’s pass sailed on him as he tried to hit Lawrence Arnold for a first down. Dadrion Taylor-Demerson made the Jayhawks pay for the mistake, picking off the pass.

The defense helped the Jayhawks weather the troublesome start to the quarter. Though the Red Raiders began the ensuing series in plus territory, at KU’s 41-yard line, they couldn’t get a touchdown out of the possession, despite getting into the red zone. Graduate transfer cornerback Jeremy Webb broke up a pass in the end zone to conclude Tech’s drive, and the Jayhawks avoided a two-TD hole for the time being, as Jonathan Garibay kicked a 28-yard field goal to make it 10-0 with 11:37 left in the first half.

KU’s offense didn’t appear so sluggish on its initial possession, picking up three first downs. Even so, after advancing to the Tech 30-yard line, KU sent kicker Jacob Borcila out for a 47-yard field goal try. What would prove to be the Jayhawks’ best chance at a score in the entire first half sailed wide left.

The Red Raiders only passed twice on their opening drive, but both were Colombi completions for 15 or more yards. Tech runs chipped away at KU’s defense for the rest of the 10-play scoring drive, capped by a Colombi fake handoff that allowed the QB to saunter into the end zone untouched and set the stage for the visitors’ easy road win.

Junior linebacker Rich Miller, who led KU with seven total tackles, said the Jayhawks too often beat themselves.

“Like Coach Leipold always says, our margin of error is really low,” Miller said. “We’ve just got to be able to come back from that. We weren’t able to tonight.”

KU is back at home next week, when Oklahoma comes to Lawrence.



10:26 — Henry Colombi 1 run. Jonathan Garibay kick. Ten-play drive for 75 yards, in 4:32. (TT 7, KU 0.)


11:37 — Garibay 28 field goal. Seven-play drive for 31 yards, in 3:10. (TT 10, KU 0.)

5:30 — Erik Ezukanma 9 run. Garibay kick. Ten-play drive for 55 yards, in 4:50. (TT 17, KU 0.)

0:32 — Myles Price 7 run. Garibay kick. Seven-play drive for 64 yards, in 2:15. (TT 24, KU 0.)


6:52 — Donovan Smith 5 run. Garibay kick. Eleven-play drive for 92 yards, in 4:27. (TT 31, KU 0.)

2:02 — Travis Koontz 2 pass from Colombi. Kick by Garibay. Five-play drive for 57 yards, in 2:15. (TT 38, KU 0.)


6:29 — Garibay 48 field goal. Nine-play drive for 32 yards, in 5:09. (TT 41, KU 0.)

0:56 — Luke Grimm 14 pass from Miles Kendrick. Jacob Borcila kick. Ten-play drive for 75 yards, in 5:36. (TT 41, KU 7.)

0:14 — Lawrence Arnold 13 pass from Kendrick. Borcila kick. Five-play drive for 35 yards, in 0:36. (TT 41, KU 14.)


Brett McCabe

10 years of digging will require a lot quite a lot of climbing. Keep working hard.

On the good news side….

Iowa lost at home to an unranked opponent.

Mizzou lost.

Texas lost.

Actually, I’ve always liked Iowa. A progressive town and university. Glad to see them succeed. Sorry to see them lose. Even they have idiot fans.

1 year, 1 month ago


Rodney Crain

On the positive side, I was right on giving the points and taking the under. So personally I did pretty well.

Glad to see us put a couple scores in at the end.

Well, we looked nice in our powder blue uniforms. The logo on the helmet was weird.

Bryce seriously that was a tough loss. Even if Iowa runs the table, they are going to need some help to make the CFP. Can make a Jan. 1 game still.

I like Iowa too Brett, same reasons.

Was watching that Mizzou game, I wish KU was playing them. You could drive a double wide trailer through their defense, untouched. On 3rd and 15 from the 17 yard line A&M ran it and the back scored easily.

Texas was stunned, that was fun too.

1 year, 1 month ago


Bryce Landon

Thanks Rodney. Nice of you to extend some sympathy my way, especially considering I've been such a prick about being a Hawkeye football fan.

I'll own it; Purdue was hungrier and better prepared than Iowa was, period. Even Hawkeye center Tyler Lindenbaum admitted as much. Iowa allowed themselves to have an emotional letdown after the big win over Penn State, and Purdue made us pay.

It's a tough loss for sure, and even tougher for me because I now live in northern Indiana in a neighborhood full of Purdue fans, and they've been letting me know about it after the game went final.

1 year, 1 month ago


Mallory Briggans

as long as the jayhawks opponents dont run the ball, dont pass the ball or kick the ball the ball
the jayhawks got a chance

1 year, 1 month ago


Layne Pierce

I was ready to say another day at the slaughter house, but those last two drives, and the efficiency and energy even aginst TT scrubs was truly encouraging. It shows me that work ethic is being firmly established.

We simply need an offensive line and a defensive line, and we could be quite decent.
We have neither, so don't hold your breath.

We have 4 running backs, who can play.
We have wide recievers and tight ends.
We have decent linebackers and cornerbacks and safeties.
We have a decent qb.

But we have no offensive line, and no depth on defensive line.

We still have to find people who can tackle in space. It remains one of our greatest weeknesses.


1 year, 1 month ago


Dale Rogers

I liked that the team didn't give up at the end and just go through the motions to run out the clock. We have a very, very long way to go but we will get there, little by little. It will be awhile before the numbers on the scoreboard show progress but overall I do think we're going the right direction. It's just very hard to keep the faith when we keep getting blown out. If I wasn't confident we have the right coaches I doubt I could stay positive, but these are the coaches who will get it done eventually.

1 year, 1 month ago


Dirk Medema

With very rare exceptions have I ever mentioned degrees from another university here, but definitely enjoying a hearty Boiler Up today. The announcers said it repeatedly through the 4th quarter; dominating.

And I hate the fumble/touchback rule. It negated a great play by the OU D in the late game as well as Purdue.

I’m also scratching my head about the Carolina blue uni’s. Thought we went through that whole branding exercise a decade+ ago to get away from that.

1 year, 1 month ago


Rodney Crain

You can thank Oregon for Alternate Uniforms. I like some of the options teams use. The Rams in the NFL is a perfect example.

It does not surprise me that KU keeps trying. We need an updated Helmet dsesign too. Maybe work some crimson in. I will take anything at this point that distracts me watching the poor line play.

Interesting that you rarely see the great, successful programs try Alternates. ND, USC, AL, GA, MI, OSU, TX, OU.

1 year, 1 month ago


Charlie Gaughn

It was probably an omen when the flyover missed the end of the National Anthem only to blow by in the middle of "Crimson and the Blue". The team ran onto the field with the enthusiasm of someone about to get a root canal. The constant Rap music, another goofy uniform, and the amplified band music that sounded like it was coming from a cheap transistor radio, all led to a very unpleasant gameday experience. Not to mention the game itself.

Oregon may have started all of this uniform nonsense but we're not Oregon. This is a program that needs consistency at every turn. Establishing a single home and road uniform would at least be a start. Dirk you're absolutely correct in that much was made of branding when "He who should not be mentioned" was AD. Now it seems like we just throw on any color and logo that looks like the flavor of the month at Baskin Robbins. No wonder the players look confused on the field. If a kid won't come here because he wants to wear a different uniform every week then he's probably not very committed to the program anyway.

The only bright spot was to see the throwback to one of the old pregame videos. I hate to think what home crowds will look like the rest of the season.

1 year, 1 month ago


Rodney Crain

Not sure an established uniform is a "start" for a better football team.

Players are not confused on the field because of what they are wearing.

Have you ever, repeat ever heard any player for any program say "I picked this school because of the uniforms they wear". Give me a break. lol

The bright spot is we have a coach who knows what he is doing.

I liked the shot of the kid wearing a plunger on his head, through his head, wearing a patrioic costume, dancing. Now that is a statement on what to wear.

1 year, 1 month ago


Jeff Coffman

I thought this was one of our better opportunities for a conference win. With a bye week and probably not the top of the Big XII, but I also realize we have a long way to go. The key is not to turnover the coach at every whim. This guy has a plan and I don't think year 1 was going to be perfect. We have a long way to go, but at least we have the top planned out.

Keep coaching and keep inching forward.

1 year, 1 month ago


Jerry Walker

The uniforms were gawd awful!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

1 year, 1 month ago


Dirk Medema

Jeff - Unfortunately, this was our best opportunity to win a conference game.

This is sort of a double whammy year. In addition to Coach Leipold and half the staff getting here incredibly late, we started a youth rebuild the year that almost everyone else was able to double down on veterans with the super seniors.

Someone else has made the comment that the key to our success will be the staff’s ability to recruit and develop players on both sides of the trenches and two deep.

1 year, 1 month ago


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