With only two recruits in their 2019 class, Kansas football will need to start their scouting trips before time runs out. The Jayhawks do not have a single official visit set up and with the decommit of four-star quarterback Lance LeGendre, they will need to start their search for not only high-end recruits but recruits in general.
Here is a look at positions Kansas should look at for the 2019 season.
1. Wide Receiver
Most casual fans would say the quarterback position is the biggest concern, but the Jayhawks are high on sophomore quarterback Miles Kendrick, who joined the team this season from the JUCO rankings. Kendrick gives Kansas the added element of his legs, something the other two “starting” quarterbacks on the depth chart lack. Thus, the biggest concern for Kansas turns to who the quarterback will be throwing the ball to.
As of right now, the Jayhawks have 14 wide receivers on their roster and five of them are seniors, including the most important receiver, Steven Sims. On top of Sims’ departure at the end of the season, the other two starting receivers, Kerr Johnson Jr. and Jeremiah Booker are both seniors and will be departing from the team at the end of the season.
Current sophomore Quan Hampton can develop into a solid receiver, but Kansas cannot expect to throw the ball to one guy the entire game. The best plan for the Jayhawks right now is to recruit a couple receivers from the JUCO ranks and then about three other receivers from the high school ranks. Recruiting from the JUCO level will allow Kansas to have a temporary solution while they develop their younger core of receivers into solid pass catchers.
The problem for the Jayhawks lies in the lack of receivers in their recruiting grounds. Assistant coach Todd Hull is accustomed to recruiting from the New Orleans area, as that is where he is from, but there are not many solid 2019 receivers from the area for Kansas to get their hands on. The most obvious area to recruit is from right at home, but the lack of talent in the state of Kansas holds the Jayhawks back from recruiting on their home turf.
The linebacker position is most likely Kansas’ best position with arguably the best linebacker in the Big 12, Joe Dineen, rounding out the bunch. However, the two starting linebackers, Dineen and Keith Loneker Jr., and their number one middle linebacker Osaze Ogbebor are all seniors. Behind those three, there are a ton of questions.
Freshman Kenny Bastida could be an interesting development. He could form into the best linebacker on the team, or he could end up being pushed to the back of a long list of linebackers. Redshirt freshman Jay Dineen, brother of Joe, could also be an interesting development, but he likely will not live up to the talent of his older brother.
Sophomore Kyron Johnson will likely take a starting role next season, but the question remains, who will play next to him? After redshirting the entire 2017 season, junior Denzel Feaster could make a run for a starting position, but his lack of playing time could haunt the Jayhawks.
3. Offensive Line
The pro for Kansas is that their offensive line is relatively young and might be able to develop into a solid core group. The con for the Jayhawks is the big might, none of their offensive linemen have shown signs of being the next great Kansas Jayhawk and the offensive line has really struggled over the last two seasons.
Starters Alex Fontana and Dwayne Wallace will be out the door after their senior seasons, and the other three starters are all juniors. With a lack of depth behind the starters, Kansas could be in the making for a major issue in the future.
Freshman Jalan Robinson could give the Jayhawks a ton of hope, but being 285 pounds, he will need to put on some more weight before becoming a reliable starter. On top of that, Robinson cannot defend the quarterback all by himself, which means Kansas needs to find other linemen to fill in the holes throughout the line.
Overall, the Jayhawks have more questions than answers. The clock is ticking in Lawrence, Kansas. Will the University be able to build a foundation for a falling football team, or will fans continue to skip the game each week?
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