Jayhawks Conclude Wednesday Practice With Short Scrimmage

Aug. 24, 2011

Postpractice Interviews:Coach Wyatt

LAWRENCE, Kan. – For the second straight day the Kansas football team endured temperatures in the upper 90’s as the Jayhawks took to the practice fields here Wednesday afternoon as they continued preparation for the Sept. 3, season-opener versus McNeese State.

Following periods of individual drills, one-on-one drills, seven-on-seven drills and some special teams work, KU moved down to Kivisto Field in Memorial Stadium for a short scrimmage. The defense held the upper hand overall, but the offense got some long runs from sophomore running back James Sims and a touchdown catch by freshman running back Tony Pierson.

Kansas head coach Turner Gill announced Wednesday that redshirt freshman Jake Farley suffered a lower leg injury and will miss 6-8 weeks of action.

Following the scrimmage, Co-Defensive Coordinator/Defensive Line Coach Buddy Wyatt met with the media. The following is a transcript of his interview.

Co-Defensive Coordinator/Defensive Line Coach Buddy Wyatt

On the status of the defensive line:

“I think we’re still a work in progress. Because a lot of guys were banged up during camp, we’re still trying to piece everything together on the defensive line. There have been some guys that have made some progress. I thought John Williams early in camp is doing a pretty good job; (he’s) making some strides from the spring. There are some guys that may not have even been in the picture in the spring, like Shane Smith, that are showing up in scrimmages making plays and things. So that’s encouraging. But we’re still trying to get everybody back and get the kinks worked out. For some of them, they’re still learning (the position), because we didn’t run some of these things in the spring. I’ve been pleased with how hard we’ve been working. It’s been kind of frustrating because of the injuries, but getting them all back has been good, so hopefully the end of this week and next week we should be able to get them all caught up.”

On his depth chart:

“It’s probably going to be a couple games into the season before anybody solidifies a starting role or a backup role. I just think guys have missed a whole lot of time.”

On freshman Ben Goodman:

“There are still some guys that there’s a question mark about whether we’re going to play them this year or redshirt them. Ben is one of those guys. He’s done a really good job as a true freshman. He comes from a really well-coached high school team at West Brook. They do a really good job down there. He’s opened our eyes. He’s making us think, but it’s all going to boil down to who’s in front of him and how many reps he’d actually get for the season as to whether we’ll redshirt him or not. But he’s done a good job. He’s still in there battling it out.”

On the development of freshman Julius Green:

“I think Julius is a lot like (redshirt freshman) Pat Lewandowski. He’s another tall, rangy guy that if he gets big, you would probably move him inside. If he stays where he is, you probably keep him at end. I think you want to get as many of those types of athletes as you can. (You want) tall, athletic, rangy guys. Julius’ biggest thing is he still hasn’t played a whole lot of football. He only played football in high school, so he’s still learning how to play and then trying to learn how to play at this level is a challenge. He’s working hard; he has some good moments and he has some bad moments. But I think his future will be bright at Kansas, because he’s going to be a big, athletic young man.”

On his philosophy of recruiting athletic defensive linemen:

“Our philosophy has sort of changed since we changed defenses a little bit. Our philosophy has been try to get a guy and grow him into that position, because then you have a more athletic defensive tackle or a more athletic defensive end. That was our approach when we (played) a 4-3. But now that we run a 3-4, it changes things a little bit. Now we’ll need some bigger, beefier guys inside. That’ll be a key for next year, to find some bigger guys.

On if there’s a risk in Patrick Dorsey being left behind due to injury:

“There’s always a risk, but it all depends on how you come back from an injury and how you develop. As a coach, you want your guys to pass them up, because you’re always looking to recruit better and looking for guys to develop and take the other guy’s spot. That just makes your team better. There’s a chance, but I don’t think Pat will let that happen. He’s still in the meetings taking notes just like he was going out to the practice. Physically is a different story, but mentally and emotionally, I don’t think he’ll let anybody pass him up.”

On the defensive line’s goal this year:

“We’re trying to improve on our sack production, so our goal is for one out of every 10 pass attempts, we’d like to get a sack. In the scrimmages and things, we’ve kept track of how many pass attempts and how many sacks we get. It’s kind of hard because it’s not live. That’s the one thing that we’re doing as a unit is improve our sack production. Except for the last scrimmage, we’ve hit it.”

On Keba Agostinho’s contribution to the defensive line:

“Keba is a very consistent football player. Right now, he’s my most consistent performer. Keba is going to be in the right spot, doing the right thing, using the right technique. He was a little dinged up there for a little bit too, but before that he was very productive for us. That’s my goal for Keba is to become more productive. I call him ‘The Technician’, because he’s very sound with his technique and he’s very smart, he doesn’t miss assignments very often. He plays the technique you ask him to play. He’s just a very consistent football player.”