Quantcast

Big, Yet Athletic Defensive Line Interviewed Thursday - KOAM TV 7

Big, Yet Athletic Defensive Line Interviewed Thursday

Updated:

Press Release University of Kansas:



Thursdays practice marked the conclusion of week one of fall camp for Kansas football. The Jayhawks have a little over a week and a half of camp remaining. Prior to the start of practice, requested defensive linemen were made available and interviewed by the media at the Anderson Family Football Complex.



According to head coach Charlie Weis, the need for defensive linemen who simply take up space is a thing of the past. Now, with spread offenses and tempo playing a key role in games, it is a necessity to have not only depth on the defensive line, but fast and athletic players as well.

"The one thing that didn't take long to figure out was that if you don't have athleticism in this league, you don't have much of a chance," Weis said. "If you don't have athleticism on defense, they're going to spread you out and they're going to go fast and you're going to have to be able to play in space. That includes the defensive linemen. You used to be able to play defensive linemen, just put big slugs in there, you can't do that anymore because you'll get gassed."

Senior Tedarian Johnson agreed that one of the goals in the position group is to get faster, while still being strong and tough enough to hold up against the run.

"We're trying to get up field, and get penetration," Johnson said. "We're trying to mix toughness with athleticism. Whatever the call is, we just try to execute it."

Weis and his coaching staff not only made an effort to go out and find those athletic defensive linemen, they also tried to groom some who were already in-house. Perhaps one of the biggest changes came by way of the coaches moving former BUCK Ben Goodman to the defensive line.

With Goodman added to the rotation, and athleticism doesn't look like an issue for the Jayhawks. Senior Keon Stowers looks to lead the group after being named a captain in 2013, as well as Johnson who also contributed last fall. Defensive line coach Buddy Wyatt acknowledged the fact that Stowers will see significant snaps, but playing time is a wide open competition among T.J. Semke (junior), Kapil Fletcher (junior), Andrew Bolton (junior) and freshmen D.J. Williams and Lay'Trion Jones among others.

"Nobody has a secure spot," Wyatt said. "Obviously some guys have an advantage because they've been here and have played and they have experience playing defense and experience playing in the Big 12, but competition makes everyone better. That's what we're looking for - competition."

A former walk-on, Weis thinks very highly of Semke who has rotated around different positions during his time at KU. Semke was recently awarded a scholarship and looks to be a large contribution to the defense this season.

"I bounced around several positions," Semke said. "I started out in the defensive line room and went to the tight end room, spent some time with the running backs and got in as much time on special teams as I could."

Weis added on Semke, "He has the respect of both the coaches and the players. Don't be surprised to see him on the field."

A junior college player that figures to mix into the rotation is Fletcher who is 6-3 and 275-pounds and had six sacks at Hartnell College last year. Fletcher also spoke highly of the competition he has seen along the defensive line.

"It's good," Fletcher said. "Competition is always there. Everyone is hungry and everyone wants to play. It makes us better as a unit, because we know there is no room for us being comfortable because there is somebody behind us even more hungry than us, so we have to keep pushing."

Even with a relatively inexperienced group, Wyatt is still intrigued by the depth of the position and plans to incorporate both veteran and newer players into the trenches.

"I'm happy with our frontline guys," Wyatt said. "We've got a lot of guys that we don't know a whole lot about what they can do at this level, but I feel like we have some dominance. The room is full, we've got some older guys and some younger guys, and I'm excited about that."

Looking Ahead
After practicing one time on Thursday, the Jayhawks will take to the practice fields for their second two-a-day session on Friday with a practice at 9 a.m. At 12:00 p.m., requested quarterbacks and wide receivers are scheduled to meet with the media at the Anderson Family Football Complex.

Fans can get their first opportunity to see the 2014 edition of the Kansas football team on Saturday, Aug. 16 for Fan Appreciation Day. The festivities will take place at Memorial Stadium beginning at 1:30 p.m. Following practice, those in attendance will have the opportunity to get autographs from players and staff who will be set up around the newly renovated field inside the stadium.

To stay up to date during fall camp follow the Jayhawks online via 2014 Fall Camp Central and on Twitter @KU_Football.


  • Local NewsMore>>

  • Suspects Identified in 1999 Oklahoma Cold Case

    Suspects Identified in 1999 Oklahoma Cold Case

    Monday, April 23 2018 5:19 PM EDT2018-04-23 21:19:09 GMT

    April 23, 2018: A Fox affiliate in Tulsa, Fox 23, is reporting that one person is in custody related to the disappearance of Ashley Freeman and Lauria Bible. KOAM and FOX 14 will Facebook live stream a media conference that could bring new information about a 1999 cold case out of Welch, Oklahoma. Authorities plan to speak about the case today at 2:00 p.m. The case dealt with the murders of Danny and Kathy Freeman in December of 1999 and the disappearance of the couple's...

    More >>

    April 23, 2018: A Fox affiliate in Tulsa, Fox 23, is reporting that one person is in custody related to the disappearance of Ashley Freeman and Lauria Bible. KOAM and FOX 14 will Facebook live stream a media conference that could bring new information about a 1999 cold case out of Welch, Oklahoma. Authorities plan to speak about the case today at 2:00 p.m. The case dealt with the murders of Danny and Kathy Freeman in December of 1999 and the disappearance of the couple's...

    More >>
  • Police Search for Armed Robbery Suspect

    Police Search for Armed Robbery Suspect

    Monday, April 23 2018 12:01 PM EDT2018-04-23 16:01:57 GMT
    JPDJPD
    JPDJPD
    Joplin Police received a call about an armed robbery on Sunday just before 10:00 p.m. (April 22, 2018). An employee at Charlie's Chicken (2020E. 32nd Street) says she locked the business up and was walking to her vehicle when a male walked up to her in the parking lot. She said he pointed a handgun at her and demanded the night deposit bag. She gave the suspect the bag and says he ran to the southwest. Police officers could not find him. Authorities say the suspect is described as ...More >>
    Joplin Police received a call about an armed robbery on Sunday just before 10:00 p.m. (April 22, 2018). An employee at Charlie's Chicken (2020E. 32nd Street) says she locked the business up and was walking to her vehicle when a male walked up to her in the parking lot. She said he pointed a handgun at her and demanded the night deposit bag. She gave the suspect the bag and says he ran to the southwest. Police officers could not find him. Authorities say the suspect is described as ...More >>
  • Vandalism Rampage by Teen in Stolen Truck Damages Erie HS & St. Paul Business

    Vandalism Rampage by Teen in Stolen Truck Damages Erie HS & St. Paul Business

    Sunday, April 22 2018 9:06 PM EDT2018-04-23 01:06:58 GMT

    A St. Paul, KS  teenager went on a vandalism crime spree Saturday night. 

    More >>

    A St. Paul, KS  teenager went on a vandalism crime spree Saturday night. 

    More >>
  • Top Sports Stories in the 4-StatesTop Sports HeadlinesMore>>

  • NEO Assistant Coach Takes Over Men's Program

    NEO Assistant Coach Takes Over Men's Program

    Monday, April 23 2018 12:55 AM EDT2018-04-23 04:55:46 GMT

    Jeremy Jackson is named NEO men's basketball head coach.  Jackson has spent the last eight seasons as the assistant coach for the Golden Norse.  Last season, NEO finished third in the OCAC with an 11-5 conference record, and second in the Region II Tournament with a 22-9 overall record.

    More >>

    Jeremy Jackson is named NEO men's basketball head coach.  Jackson has spent the last eight seasons as the assistant coach for the Golden Norse.  Last season, NEO finished third in the OCAC with an 11-5 conference record, and second in the Region II Tournament with a 22-9 overall record.

    More >>
  • PSU Splits DH Season Finale with UCO

    PSU Splits DH Season Finale with UCO

    Monday, April 23 2018 12:22 AM EDT2018-04-23 04:22:57 GMT

    The Gorillas end the season 22-23 overall, and 12-14 in conference play.  Pitt State misses the MIAA post-season tournament for the first time since 2014.

    More >>

    The Gorillas end the season 22-23 overall, and 12-14 in conference play.  Pitt State misses the MIAA post-season tournament for the first time since 2014.

    More >>
  • Southern Softball Wraps Up the Season

    Southern Softball Wraps Up the Season

    Monday, April 23 2018 12:16 AM EDT2018-04-23 04:16:24 GMT

    Sophomore Elizabeth Windsor went a combined 6-for-9 on the day, with a grand slam and two doubles, and five RBI.  The Lions finished the year 22-29 overall, and 9-16 in MIAA play.

    More >>

    Sophomore Elizabeth Windsor went a combined 6-for-9 on the day, with a grand slam and two doubles, and five RBI.  The Lions finished the year 22-29 overall, and 9-16 in MIAA play.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly

KOAM - Licensed to Pittsburg, Kansas
Send tips, ideas and press releases to: tips@koamtv.com
Send newsroom questions or comments to: comments@koamtv.com
Phone: (417) 624-0233 or (620) 231-0400
Web comments or questions: webmaster@koamtv.com
Newsroom Fax: (417) 624-3158

Powered by WorldNow All content © Copyright 2000 - 2018 KOAM. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service, and Ad Choices.