RCW: Sport Spotlight 4.4 (Football)
— Kansas Football (@KU_Football) September 16, 2017
A post shared by Kansas Football (@kufootball) on Sep 16, 2017 at 10:44am PDT
As Kansas football head coach David Beaty works through his third season at the helm of the Jayhawk program, he still has hands full with a very young team. In addition to a small pool of upperclassmen, Beaty has two full recruiting classes and a partial class of his own players at his disposal.
While the Jayhawks continue to develop under Beaty and his staff, it is notable just how young they still are—which makes the future look bright.
In Kansas’ first road game, the team took 70 players to Ohio as part of the travel roster. Of those 70 Jayhawks, just nine were seniors. What’s more, less than half of the travel squad (43.7%) were upperclassmen.
Eleven-of-22 starters for Kansas’ week three tilt were underclassmen, including the entire starting offensive line (four sophomores, one redshirt freshman). Just one senior, cornerback Derrick Neal, started in the game.
Two true freshmen, running back Dom Williams and wide receiver Quan Hampton, started the game for the Jayhawk offense, while other newcomers and young players found many ways to contribute.
On the season, Kansas’ leading rusher is true sophomore Khalil Herbert (137 yards) and he is followed by Williams (110 yards). The leading receiver by receptions is Hampton (15 receptions). Overall, eight of KU’s 12 pass catchers through three games are underclassmen or in their first year with the program.
The Jayhawk defense’s front seven is the most experienced position on the team, as KU starts six juniors and a senior in Neal. However, the back end of the Kansas defense is extremely youthful as its safeties are true sophomores Mike Lee and Bryce Torneden, while the corners are both newcomers in junior Shakial Taylor and sophomore Hasan Defense.