No. 15 Kansas Wins at Colorado 19-14

BOULDER , Colo. – Behind the leadership of quarterback Todd Reesing, No. 15 Kansas held off Colorado to defeat the Buffaloes, 19-14, in a Big 12 football clash at Folsom Field Saturday.

Reesing engineered four scoring drives as Kansas improved its 2007 undefeated season to 7-0 (3-0 in Big 12 play). It marks the first time since 1995 that KU opened the year 7-0 and the Jayhawks’ first win at Folsom Field since the same 1995 season. Colorado dropped to 4-4 on the year and 2-2 in league action.

Leading 19-7 after a Reesing four-yard touchdown pass to senior tight end Derek Fine, Colorado mounted a strong comeback and pulled within five, 19-14, with 3:42 remaining. After a three-and-out, the Jayhawks punted to CU on its own 42 yard line and a stingy KU defense stopped the Buffaloes’ momentum to seal the Kansasvictory.

A sophomore from Austin , Texas , Reesing was 20-for-29 through the air for 153 yards with one touchdown. He also led all rushers with 84 yards on seven carries. Last year, Reesing engineered a KU come-from-behind 20-15 KU win against Colorado in his collegiate debut, passing for 106 yards and rushing for 90 yards.

“I’m really proud of the way our kids played tonight,” Kansas sixth-year head coach Mark Mangino said. “It was a big win on the road.”

The Jayhawk defense held Colorado to 66 yards rushing and an average of two yards per carry. KU used a balanced attack amassing 180 yards on the ground and 153 through the air.

Kansas registered the only points of the first half when it capitalized on a Colorado fumble late in the first quarter as the Buffs drove to the Kansas 11 yard line. KU junior Kendrick Harper recovered the Hugh Charles fumble. The Jayhawks then went on a 58-yard drive, highlighted by a Reesing 53-yard sprint to set up a Scott Webb 48-yard field goal to make the score 3-0 at intermission.

Following a Colorado touchdown to start the second half, Kansas answered quickly with a five-play, 58-yard drive to take the lead for good. Sophomore Jake Sharp ended the quick strike with a two-yard scoring run, his seventh touchdown of the season, to make the score 10-7 in favor of Kansas.

Later that quarter, KU sophomore safety Justin Thornton recorded his third interception of the season from CU quarterback Cody Hawkins. KU’s ensuing drive stalled, and Webb made the score 13-7 in favor of the road team with a 35-yard field goal.

The most impressive drive of the night for Kansas came with 6:08 to play in the third quarter. Pinned on its own six yard line, the Jayhawks mounted a 15-play, 94-yard drive which concluded with the Reesing-Fine connection.

At 7-0, Kansas remains the only undefeated team in the Big 12 and will now travel to College Station , Texas , to face Texas A&M, on Oct. 27 at 6 p.m. The game from Kyle Field will be televised on ESPN2.

Kansas’ win over Colorado…
…Gave KU a seven-game winning streak for the longest such streak since winning seven straight in 1995.
…Gave the Jayhawks a 7-0 start for the first time since 1995 (started 7-0) and just the second time in the last 39 seasons (1968).
…Gave KU a 3-0 conference start for the first time since 1995. KU became the first Big 12 North school since Nebraska in 2002 to open league play 3-0 (thanks to David Plati).
…Marked KU’s 10th win in its last 11 games dating back to last year.
…Gave KU back-to-back road victories in the same season for the first time since winning at Colorado and at Oklahoma in 1995.
…Gave KU two road wins in the same season for the first time since 1996 (3-3 on the road that year).
…Gave KU consecutive victories over Colorado for the first time since 1980 and 1981.
…Gave KU seven regular season wins, its most since posting nine in 1995 (1995 team went 10-2 after bowl victory and 2005 team was 7-6 after a bowl win).
…Gave KU three conference wins, its most since posting nine in 1995 (KU has won three conference games five times since 1995).
…Improved KU to 6-21 on the road in the Mark Mangino era.
…Improved Mangino to 32-35 in his head coaching career.

–When CU went up 7-3 at the 9:50 mark of the third quarter, it marked just the third time this season KU trailed in a game. The Jayhawks immediately responded to go up 10-7 at the 8:20 mark. Kansas has only trailed for 20 minutes and seven seconds in 2007 (out of a total of 420 total minutes).
–Twice this season after falling behind, Kansas responded on its next drive to regain the lead.
–Kansas has held all three of its Big 12 opponents to less than 100 yards on the ground. Big 12 foes are averaging just 55.7 rushing yards against KU in 2007.
–Sophomore QB Todd Reesing took over the KU single season passing yards record for a sophomore. He moved his season total to 1,805 to surpass Chip Hilleary’s 1990 effort of 1,730 passing yards. His mark ranks 10th all-time at KU for a single season among all classes.
–Reesing moved his career passing yards total to 2,009 to move into 15th place on the KU career list. He moved past Dick Gilman who accumulated 1,857 passing yards from 1946-49.
–Reesing got loose for a 53-yard run late in the first quarter to mark Kansas’ longest rushing gain this season. The run was short of Reesing’s career-long run of 63 done last season in his career debut against Colorado in Lawrence.
–Reesing led KU in rushing with 84 yards. It marked the first time a QB led KU on the ground since Reesing did so last season against Colorado.
–Senior TE Derek Fine has caught at least two passes in eight straight games.
–Fine took over 18th place on the KU career receptions list with 79. His mark ranks second all-time among KU tight ends.
–Junior LB James Holt recorded a career high 15 tackles. His previous high was nine vs. Central Michigan.
–Sophomore S Justin Thornton picked off his third interception of the season midway through the third quarter. It was his third INT in the last four games.
–Sophomore RB Jake Sharp has scored one rushing touchdown in six of seven games this season including each of the last four outings.
–Kansas shut out its opponent in the first half for the fifth time this season.
–Senior DT James McClinton picked off his first career interception in the final minute of the first half. Despite fumbling the ball back to CU, the play knocked the Buffs back out of field goal range.
–McClinton’s interception was the third by a KU defensive lineman this season (Larson, Brorsen).
–Junior transfer CB Kendrick Harper continued to make an impact in his third game of the season as he recovered a fumble to set up Kansas’ first points of the game.Harper made his KU debut in the fourth quarter against KSU and made a key interception.
–Senior PK Scott Webb connected on a season-long 48 yard field goal to open the scoring in the second quarter. The successful kick was one yard short of a career long. Webb added a 35-yard field goal in the third quarter to go with one PAT for a total of seven points. His 71 points for the season match Kansas’ opponents total of 71.
–Webb has made a field goal in nine consecutive games and 15 of his last 16 games.
–Webb’s two field goals made pushed his career total to 40 which tied Johnny Beck (2001-04) and Joe Garcia (1997-2000) and the KU career list.
–Senior P Kyle Tucker appeared to return to form averaging 43.8 yards on five punts with a long punt of 53.
–Kansas was scoreless in the first quarter marking only the third period Kansas did not through the first seven games of 2007.
–Junior WR Dexton Fields saw his streak of 17 straight games with two or more catches snapped. He finished with one catch for 17 yards.
–Sharp recorded his first career start.
–Senior OL Cesar Rodriguez started a team best 36th game (22nd straight). Senior DT James McClinton started his team-best 27th straight game (29th overall).