Jayhawks Power Their Way To 76-39 Win Over Cornhuskers
LAWRENCE, Kan. – Todd Reesing threw a school-record six touchdown passes and had 354 yards through the air, while senior fullback Brandon McAnderson gained 125 yards on the ground and four touchdowns as No. 8 Kansas beat Nebraska, 76-39 in its annual homecoming game at Memorial Stadium Saturday.
The Jayhawks set numerous offensive records Saturday, en route to earning their ninth victory of the season to improve to 9-0 overall and 5-0 in the Big 12. Nebraska drops to 4-6 overall and 1-5 in conference play. The 9-0 start is KU’s best since the Jayhawks won the first nine games of the 1908 season.
After a three-and-out on their opening drive, the Jayhawks scored on their next 11 possessions. KU’s 76 points were the most scored against a conference opponent and third most in team history. The Jayhawks gained 34 first downs, tied for the most in school history and ran 90 offensive plays, which was six away from matching a school record.
Reesing set school records for touchdown passes in a game (six) and in a single-season (23). Four of his TD passes came in the first half to four different receivers. Freshman Dezmon Briscoe caught three of Reesing’s scoring strikes on the afternoon and finished with five catches for 52 yards. Senior Marcus Henry led all receivers with six catches for 101 yards and a touchdown.
McAnderson’s four rushing touchdowns tied a school record with four other Jayhawks, most recently by June Henley against TCU in 1996. The senior’s 125 yards rushing marked the second-straight game that he’s gone over the century mark on the ground.
As a team, KU gained 572 yards, including 218 on the ground.
Nebraska scored on its first possession of the game, and later led 14-7 in the first quarter. However, KU scored 21 points in the opening quarter and 27 in the second period in its record-setting day.
The eighth-ranked Jayhawks will travel to Stillwater, Okla. next Saturday to face Oklahoma State at 7 p.m., in a game that will be aired live on ABC.
Kansas’ win against Nebraska…
…Makes Kansas 9-0 for the first time since 1908.
…Gives KU a 9-0 record for the third time in school history (1908, 1899)
…Gives Kansas a nine-win season for the sixth time in school history and the first since going 10-2 in 1995.
…Gives Kansas nine straight wins for the first time since winning nine consecutive in 1951-52.
…Makes KU 5-0 in conference play for the first time in school history.
…Gives Kansas five wins for the first time in Big 12 history (KU was 5-2 in the final year of the Big Eight Conference in 1995 and its previous best record was 3-5 on five occasions).
…Marks Kansas’ 12th win in its last 13 games.
…Is KU’s eighth straight home win and 17th in its last 19 games at Memorial Stadium.
…Gives Kansas two wins against Nebraska in the last three seasons after losing 36 straight to NU in games prior to that.
–Kansas’ 76 points were its most ever in a conference game surpassing the 58 scored against Baylor earlier this season (Oct. 13). Prior to this year, the previous league high was 55 points against Kansas State in 1947. The 76 points rank as the third most in school history.
Kansas’ All-Time Highest Scoring Games
86-6 vs. South Dakota State, 10-11-47
83-0 vs. Washington (Mo.), 11-10-23
76-39 vs. Nebraska, 11-3-07
72-0 vs. UAB, 9-24-94
71-14 vs. Cal-State Northridge, 9-11-99
–Kansas’ 76 points were the most ever allowed against Nebraska. Its 48 first half points were the most allowed against Nebraska and its 27 points in the second quarter were also the most allowed versus the Huskers.
–The combined points of 115 broke the previous Kansas record of 97 set twice before – last in 2003 against Colorado (a CU 50-47 win).
–Kansas’ 48 first half points were the second most scored in a half at KU and the most since KU scored 49 points in the first half against Toledo in 2004. Kansas has actually scored 49 points in a half on three occasions.
–Kansas’ 34 first downs tied the school record – vs. Washington (Mo.) in 1923.
–Through nine games, Kansas has broken the KU single-season record for points scored with 416. The previous record was 384 points in 2003 (13 games).
–Today’s attendance of 51,910 set an all-time record for Memorial Stadium, surpassing the 51,821 when Kansas hosted Kansas State in 2006.
–Six of the seven times this season when Kansas has trailed, the next possession Kansas has either tied or moved ahead of its opponent, including twice today.
–Seven of KU’s 11 scoring drives were under two minutes.
–Nebraska scored 14 points in the first quarter against Kansas after the Jayhawks had allowed only 13 points in the first quarter in the first eight games combined.
–Sophomore QB Todd Reesing threw a game school record six touchdown passes.
–Reesing set the Kansas single-season record with 23 touchdown passes this year. Today he passed current graduate assistant coach Bill Whittemore who had 18 TD passes during the 2003 season.
–Reesing’s 26 career TD passes are fourth most in school history.
–Today marked Reesing’s third game of 300-plus yards passing and his second most yards this season – 368 vs. Florida International. His 354 yards passing are 10th most in school history.
–Reesing moved into third on the KU single-season completions list, currently at 180. He is seven shy from second. His 2,339 passing yards this season rank fourth best in school history, 46 shy from third.
–Reesing’s 2,542 yards total offense in 2007 moved him into fourth most in the KU season chart.
–Reesing moved into 11th on the KU career passing yards list, currently at 2,543.
–Junior Marcus Herford broke the school’s single game record with 203 kick return yards. He broke the mark of 195 set by Greg Heaggans against Missouri State in 2002.
–Senior RB Brandon McAnderson scored four touchdowns, which ties a school record held by five others (last being June Henley vs. TCU in 1996).
–McAnderson now has 13 touchdowns on the season which ranks tied for fifth on the Kansassingle-season list. The 13 are the most touchdowns since June Henley set the school record with 18 in 1996.
–McAnderson’s 119 yards rushing marked his second straight 100-yard game and fourth of the season.
–Freshman Dezmon Briscoe’s three touchdown receptions rank second most in a game atKansas and one shy of the school record of four by Quintin Smith against Louisville in 1989.
–Briscoe’s seven TD receptions in 2007 are a KU freshman record and ranks tied for third on the KU single-season list.
–Senior PK Scott Webb broke the KU game record with 10 PATs. He broke his own mark set against Toledo, 9-11-04.
–Webb also broke the KU single-season record for PATs in a season, currently at 49. With his 10 today, he broke the record of 48 by Bill Bell set in 1968.
–Webb moved into third place on the KU single-season scoring list, currently at 88 points. He is 10 shy of second and 20 from first.
–Kerry Meier’s TD reception from Reesing was Meier’s second TD of the season and first by receiving.
–Meier became the first Jayhawk since Garfield Taylor in 1981 to have rushed, received and passed for a touchdown in the same season as he caught a scoring pass in the first quarter.
–Senior TE Derek Fine has caught at least two passes in 10 straight games and has at least three receptions in six consecutive games.
–Senior DL James McClinton has started 29 consecutive games, while OT Cesar Rodriguez has started 24 straight and LBs Joe Mortensen and Mike Rivera have each started 21 in a row.
Kansas Head Coach Mark Mangino
On Todd Reesing:
“He is very intelligent. The University put him in the Honors program as a true freshman. He has a chance to maybe be the best that I have coached. He can handle praise and he deserves it. He has come in and created stability and leadership. He has brought a competitive spark to the team and he is only a sophomore. He still has some things to prove but knowing him he will prove them.”
On the offensive game plan:
“I had conversations throughout the game with the offensive coaches and we just wanted to keep running our offense. We wanted to run our system and let the kids see if they could continue to make plays. I didn’t think we were going to score 76 points today but the kids really played well. They played smart, sharp football”
On his expectations coming into the season:
“I’m not going to sit here and tell you I thought we were going to be where we are now. I thought we had a chance to have a really good football team. I felt that we had led the kids through winter and spring ball and training camp. If some kids stepped up and we got the quarterback settled, got the defensive situation settled and the interior of the offensive line settled, then I thought we had a chance to have a pretty good football team. Those kids have stepped up and developed and here we are.”
“I have been in a couple of situations where we have played good offense and played good defense and played good special teams. We didn’t have any major health issues. I was associated with a team at Kansas State and Oklahoma that was like that. We still have games to play.”
On the team’s makeup:
“You can’t discount Reesing. We have two or three other kids that the media and players say are outstanding players. But for the most part it is kind of an ensemble task. There is a group who is pretty smart, tough as nails, play hard. We have some guys who you would call intellectuals, who are really smart and intelligent kids that prove it in the classroom. They are out there playing for us, making smart plays and not making mistakes.”
Sophomore Quarterback Todd Reesing
On the offensive explosion:”This is one of those games that you’re never going to forget. Anytime you can score over 70 points against a team like Nebraska, it’s unbelievable. We’re ecstatic. We understand what we’re doing, but we’re playing within the offense. The coaches are calling good plays to put us in position to make big plays.”
On the series with Nebraska:
“In this entire season, every game people continue to look at the past history and records we have with every team. That has no effect on us. This is a whole new season; you can’t look in the past on those kinds of things. We’re a whole new team and we’re bringing a new attitude to Kansas. We’re not going to look in the past, because that has no effect on the here and now.”
On breaking offensive records:”We’re never thinking about statistics and records. We’re out there scoring points, having a lot of fun and trying to get a victory. There’s no reason to worry about the stats because we’re going to find a way to score. It doesn’t matter who’s scoring or how we do it. That’s not important to us.”
Sophomore Free Safety Justin Thornton
On the offense today:
“It’s hard to lose when your offense scores 76 points in a game. We were fortunate that our offense was clicking on all cylinders today. They put up points on almost every drive. That definitely helps (the defense) out.”
On the defense:
“We came out and weren’t on top of everything. We made a couple of technique mistakes. I think the coaches made some good calls, but (Nebraska’s) receivers made some good catches at times and at times we slipped up and allowed them to make big plays.”
On Nebraska’s passing offense:
“By watching film, and the other games they’ve played, we expected them to come out and balance their run and pass game. They have a good running back (Marlon Lucky) who is their leading receiver on their team. We expected him to get some more balls. It was definitely surprising that they came out and passed that much. At halftime we had to make some adjustments and we were able to come out in the second half and put on a pretty good defensive show.”
Senior running back Brandon McAnderson
On scoring 76 points:
“It felt pretty good. We were clicking and really executing today and it paid off. It was pretty big stuff, but a win is a win. We scored 19 in a couple of games and won, and today we scored 76, but it wasn’t like we were celebrating the 76 points we scored, we were just celebrating the victory.”
On not turning the ball over:
“It’s really good, because we aren’t beating ourselves. In the past, it had been one of our huge problems. This year we have a different mentality and we’re more mature.”
On helping the defense out:
“We owed them one. Nebraska did some good things in the passing game and had some success against us. It’s not necessarily a good thing, but now we can go on the practice field and correct some problems we’ve had on defense. I’m non on defense but I know we’ll be ready.”
On if the team feels more pressure at 9-0:
“I don’t feel the pressure. I’m not just trying to say the right things here, but I feel like we’re a different kind of team. We have a lot of chemistry, and we go out there and have fun. It’s always more fun when you win, but I’ve already been having fun.”
On the atmosphere today:
“It was pretty cool. It’s always good to see the stands packed, especially for Nebraska.”
Junior linebacker Mike Rivera
On forcing five turnovers:
“It was nice to get some turnovers. We needed those in the first half, but I’m glad we got them in the second half. It was nice.”
On the game:
“It was a big win. We just have to keep things rolling. Being 9-0 feels really good. We just want to keep it going on the rest of the year. We’re looking forward to Oklahoma State next week and to start studying for them.”
On if the team has any more to prove:
“I feel like we do. Every week you have to prove yourself. It’s not like you’re 9-0 and all of the sudden you’ve got nothing to do. We have a lot of work to do and a lot of things to correct on defense. We want to get out there and do it big next week.”
Nebraska Head Coach Bill Callahan
On the game:
“First off you have to give credit to Kansas, they did a good job and they are a great football team. They played well in all dimensions of the game. You have to give them credit. They scored four straight times after the score was tied and really pulled away in the game. Give credit to Mark Mangino. They are very well coached and a very disciplined football team. They really outplayed us in all phases of the game. We wanted to come out in the second half and get a score and we did that. Then they got a very good kick-off return after that. Their (Kansas) special teams played very well all day. We had too many turnovers that led to the huge separation that was created in the third quarter.”
On the defense:
“We are doing everything that we can. There really are no other options if you are referring to coaching changes. We don’t have any options at this point. We are just going to do the best we can. We are just going to go home and get ready to play Kansas State. We are just going to keep working. As coaches we are just going to keep working, coaching, and motivating. We need to help the players get through this because this is a tough time for us. We are going to do everything in our power to help the kids out.”
On junior quarterback Joe Ganz:
“Joe (Ganz) had his good moments and his bad moments. I thought he did a pretty good job. In the first half he sparked us and then again in the second half on the first drive he sparked us again. He made some incredible plays and I am really proud of that. I know for a fact that he would like to have a few plays back in the third quarter that led to some turnovers. When you get behind by that margin, you really press to try to make a play and close up the game up a bit.”
Senior Wide Receiver Maurice Purify
On his performance:
“It was great placement by Joe (Ganz). I had not choice but to catch them. One was an inside fade, one was a goal line fade. We didn’t win. I could have had 200 yards and five touchdowns, but we still didn’t win. It doesn’t feel as good as a win would have.”
On surviving an offensive shootout:
“We needed to force a couple more punts and we needed to drive the ball a little bit more in the first half. We were leading in the first half and they only had one punt. We need to hold up on defense more and convert on third downs. Not too many offenses can score every time they get the ball. We knew it was going to be hard and it puts a lot of pressure on us knowing we have to score every time we get the ball.”
On quarterback Joe Ganz:
“Ganz played well. He controlled our offense. He read the defense well. He put the ball where it needed to be. A couple of times he threw the ball a little high and it got picked off.”
Senior Safety Bryan Wilson
On the game:
“I can’t tell you what they were doing that we couldn’t stop. We came in with a solid game plan. We will look at the film tonight and figure out what it was. They got us out of our blitz game early and beat us with key plays here and there. They got us on our heels and took advantage of it. It got out of hand real fast.”
On Kansas’ offense:
“You would never think a team would score 76 on you. We came in with a good scheme. We thought we could take advantage against them in some areas . We couldn’t come against them like we usually do.”
Junior Linebacker Tyler Wortman
On a blowout loss:
“It sucks. I really wish it could have gone the other way. We just have to move on, learn from the film and get ready for next week. It snowballed on us bad. It’s difficult when it goes bad on the road. You just have to build momentum on the good things that happen to your team.”
On the defensive effort:
“I don’t think you can play like that (giving up). You have to keep going no matter what. It comes down to pride.”