The first number is Mack Brown’s record after two years at North Carolina.
The second number is Frank Beamer’s record after two tears at Virginia Tech.
The third number is Kirk Ferentz’s record after two years at Iowa.
The fourth number is Gene Chizik’s record after two years at Iowa State — which he turned into the Auburn job.
The 5-19 mark is also what Turner Gill posted in two years at Kansas. He got fired for it.
Well, that’s not quite right. He got fired at KU because too many of the 19 losses were downright ugly; because the athletic director who hired him, Lew Perkins, got embroiled in some nonsense involving fitness equipment and retired; because the new AD, Sheahon Zenger, played college football for Bill Snyder (6-16 in his first two years); because many in the KU/Kansas City media soured on Perkins and thus weren’t sold on Gill; and because, at long last, he was too ambitious.
Gill’s first and most prominent goal at Kansas was to entirely rebuild a wrecked, ruinous culture that centered on former coach Mark Mangino working 20 hours a day, slowly eating himself to death and treating players, student parking workers and critics like the gum on his shoe.
Gill bit off too much. He wanted players to respond too quickly. He took away their cell phones and asked them not to hang out with girls late at night, which elicited hoots from the media. Gill expected he’d have more time. He didn’t get it. He recruited well, actually — better than Mangino ever did after he lost Tim Beck to Nebraska — but didn’t blow a horn about it.
Zenger will have plenty of candidates from which to select. Perhaps one of them can instill a fury in the Kansas football team that inspires brawls with the basketball team.
If Gill made one key error — and it’s a lesson worth learning — it’s this: He didn’t get a quarterback. He tried going with the guy Mangino tabbed as Todd Reesing’s successor (Kale Pick) and that kid lost to North Dakota State. He tried a recruit from the same junior college as Oklahoma’s Josh Heupel (Quinn Mecham) and he wasn’t any good either. He’d been trying Jordan Webb this year, and Webb is a sack-and-turnover machine. In a 24-10 loss to Missouri, Gill played, I dunno, 32 guys behind center. Webb, two or three Wildcat QBs, two Jayhawk doves. Whoever he could find to gain yards. It was embarrassing.