RCW: Football Special Teams Preview
Kansas fields some experience and is developing some depth on its special teams under second-year special teams coordinator Joe DeForest.
The Jayhawks return senior punter Cole Moos, who has a solid 2016 campaign. He punted 73 times for 3,024 yards, coming just seven yards shy of moving into 10th on KU’s all-time single-season punting list. Moos was tabbed Big 12 Special Teams Player of the Week following the Jayhawks’ game at Baylor after averaging 50.4 yards per punt against the Bears, including an 82-yard punt which ranks as the fifth-longest punt in school history.
In addition to his punting duties, Moos also serves as the holder on field goals and point after attempts.
Freshman kicker Liam Jones is slated to be the starter for KU. An all-state honorable mention honoree at Choctaw High School in Oklahoma, Jones comes in with a big leg and is also slated to man the kickoff duties.
Redshirt freshman Kyle Thompson will serve as the backup to both Moos on punts and Jones on kickoffs, while senior Gabriel Rui is listed as the backup at kicker.
Elusive wide receiver Steven Sims Jr., gets the nod at punt return, handling those duties for the first time in his KU career. He will be backed up by fellow junior wide receiver Tyler Patrick, who is also back at punt return for the first time while at Kansas.
Sims will also add kickoff return duties to his resume as he and sophomore wide receiver Daylon Charlot will be back in the end zone to field kickoffs. Other Jayhawks who are in the mix in the return game are freshman wide receiver Quan Hampton, junior running back Taylor Martin and junior wide receiver Kerr Johnson Jr.