Kansas Football Continues to Shock the World
The final seconds were ticking off the clock during the Kansas Jayhawks’ 48-30 win on the road at the University of Houston. On the television broadcast, you could hear the loud cheers from Kansas fans chanting “Rock Chalk Jayhawk… KU!” as the voices were ringing throughout TDECU Stadium.
Houston’s fans had slowly been heading for the exits throughout the fourth quarter, as they were stunned at the result they were witnessing unfold. The Cougars were favored by just over a touchdown as the game kicked off and they looked good at the start of the game.
Houston, much like West Virginia the week before, took a quick 14-0 lead on the unsuspecting Jayhawks. With one touchdown by air, and one by ground, the Kansas defense needed to make a few adjustments on the fly.
Adjustments were made by the coaching staff and defensive personnel and the offense took flight in what can only be described as a beautiful melding of all units coming together to take the momentum and never give it back. Although a weather delay of 70 minutes tried to slow the offense down, quarterback Jalon Daniels had other plans.
The Kansas offense scored touchdowns on four consecutive possessions as the defense didn’t allow another point to close out the first half as the team went on a 28-0 run. Rushing touchdowns from Daniels and running back Daniel Hishaw along with receiving touchdowns from Luke Grimm and Torry Locklin gave the Jayhawks a 28-14 lead at halftime.
Houston tried to seize momentum out of halftime, coming out with a good drive to start the second half that turned into a touchdown and cut the Jayhawks’ lead to 28-21. That was as close as the Cougars would get again.
Daniels led the team down and got another rushing touchdown to extend the lead to 35-21. Less than two minutes later, the Jayhawks added to the lead with a pass from Daniels to tight end Jared Casey, giving Kansas their largest lead of the game.
Houston got their final touchdown of the game on the last play of the third quarter. A missed extra point left the score at 42-27 heading to the fourth quarter.
Kansas added two field goals in the fourth quarter as they tried to milk the clock. Houston only added one field goal as they moved nonchalantly through the final quarter with no urgency. The final score was an impressive 48-30 win for the Jayhawks.
It was the first time Kansas had won back-to-back road games since 2007. The first time the team started 3-0 since 2009. It’s still early in the season, but Kansas has already hit the over on their projected season win total through three weeks of football.
Daniels was rewarded for his impressive outing, being named Big 12 offensive player of the week. His five total touchdowns continue to put him on the map nationally, just a week removed from being added to the Davey O’Brien Award watch list.
Kansas entered this game leading the nation in scoring offense and didn’t slow down against a typically stout Houston defense. Now they currently rank 5th nationally, averaging 51 points per game. They will look to continue their hot streak at home against Duke on Saturday.
Duke is riding into Lawrence on a hot streak as well. Like Kansas, the Blue Devils have started the season 3-0. Everyone expects Kansas and Duke to be great at basketball, but football is another story. In fact, through three games, this is the first time in college football history that blue blood basketball schools Kansas, Duke, North Carolina, and Kentucky have all started the season 3-0.
The Jayhawks are looking to “Pack the Booth”, a reference to the name of their stadium, David Booth Kansas Memorial Stadium. It’s been the theme of the week ever since the KU Athletics twitter account started the campaign directly after the road win at Houston. It’s a call for the fans to get there early, be loud, and be proud.
Kansas opens as a nine-point favorite over Duke. This is a stark contrast from the last couple of weeks in which the Jayhawks were heavy underdogs. How will they respond?
The defense needs to get out to a better start. The last few weeks, the opposing team has been getting out to a quick two-score lead. Getting an early three and out to set the tone would be a fantastic turn of events. Giving the offense a chance to break the game open early would be the best possible scenario.
The offense just needs to continue doing what they’ve been doing. Scoring 40+ points per game may not be sustainable throughout the entirety of the season, but they might be able to keep it up against Duke. Of course, the goal is to score on every possession, and Kansas has been successful in doing that on multiple possessions in a row in recent weeks.
Kansas is currently receiving 23 votes to get into the Top 25 in the AP poll. A win over Duke might push them into the Top 25 for the first time since October 2009.
Kansas fans, get out early and pack the Booth. This team has a defense that is getting better, a high-powered offense, and a contagious positivity surrounding the program. Be loud, be proud, and show support for your undefeated Kansas Jayhawks.