You’ve seen the tomahawks on the back of the Florida State helmets, the buckeye tree leaves on the Ohio State helmets and the paw prints on the back of the Clemson helmets.
Well, allow me to introduce you to R1S1 Wave the Wheat’s version of the same weekly honors for the Kansas Jayhawks — Wheaties.
Each Monday, after every KU football game, we’ll take one last look back at the game that was and hand out different amounts of the classic and iconic breakfast cereal to the Jayhawks’ top performers.
Win or lose, there are always players who deserve a little extra sugar on their cereal. Sometimes, that’s because of massive plays in big moments. Other times, it might be someone who deserves to be honored for something that you didn’t see.
Either way, we’ll keep an eye on it each week and deliver those honors each week in this space. So be sure to come get your Monday morning Wheaties and feel free to hit up the comments section with any players you feel we might’ve missed.
Now, without further ado, here’s our first edition of Wheaties following KU’s 38-27 win over BYU on Saturday, Sept. 23 at David Booth Kansas Memorial Stadium.
Picture on the box
• Let’s put the entire KU offensive line on there for this first edition. Not only did they give Daniels the time he needed to make plays in the passing game, but the big boys up front also helped KU’s running backs carve up the BYU defense for 221 yards on 37 carries, good for a 6-yards-per-carry average. Devin Neal finished with 91 yards on 17 carries and Daniel Hishaw added 60 yards on 8 carries. Daniels himself also picked up 54 yards on 9 carries. Most of it was made possible by Mike Novitsky, Michael Ford Jr., Ar’maj Adams-Reed, Dominick Puni and Bryce Cabledue, with Kobe Baynes and Spencer Lovell also rotating in.
A full bowl
• Sophomore cornerback Cobee Bryant – Bryant was the main man in every way for the Kansas Jayhawks in their win over BYU. His massive hit, scoop and score in the first quarter not only gave Kansas the lead but it also provided notice that the Jayhawks were ready and willing to match the physicality of a team like BYU. There was much more to Bryant’s game than his early play, however. He also picked off a pass later in the day — giving him seven interceptions as a Jayhawk — and was thrown at by BYU QB Kedon Slovis a total of just three times in 51 attempts. Bryant has long had the reputation as a lockdown corner, but his continual improvement and surging confidence have only made him a bigger weapon for the Kansas defense week after week after week.
• Senior safety Kenny Logan Jr. — Everyone saw Logan’s pick-six to kick off the second half that gave the Jayhawks the lead and flipped the momentum of the game, but what you didn’t see was what took place well before kickoff, when Logan told his teammates and brothers in the secondary that this game was on them. He challenged each and every one of them to bring his best effort and his best game and, according to O.J. Burroughs, left the group with one thought and question: Who’s going to make the first play? Bryant answered that question, but by game’s end nearly everyone in the secondary had made a significant contribution to the win. That’s experience and leadership paying off.
• Sophomore defensive end Austin Booker – The KU pass rush wasn’t great, but Booker was damn good on that defensive line that, through four games, has shown itself to be a strength of this particular KU team. The tests will get tougher and they’ll have to hold up to all kinds of challenges. But the fact that they can rotate so many competent guys in there helps allow guys like Booker to stay fresh and play with tenacity. Against BYU, the transfer from Minnesota led the Jayhawks with 7 tackles, including 1.5 sacks and 2.5 tackles for loss. Six of Booker’s seven tackles were solo stops and he currently is tied for the team lead with 3.5 sacks on the season and second in tackles for loss at 4.5.
Drink the milk
• Senior cornerback Kalon Gervin and sophomore linebacker Jayson Gilliom – We’re giving each of these guys some love for their role in Logan’s pick-six. Gervin was actually the first to get a hand on the ball and after he broke up the pass from Slovis, Gilliom got in on the tip drill, as well, which kept the play alive for Logan, who was sprinting from the middle of the field to get in on the play.
• Senior kicker Seth Keller – It didn’t look like much on the stat sheet and KU may have won without it, but let’s give Keller a little taste for knocking through a 23-yard field goal that clinched the victory. The Texas State transfer is now 6-for-6 on field goals this season and perfect on PATs, as well, having drilled all 18 attempts. The expectation was that KU had upgraded its kicking game significantly this offseason and Keller has backed that up in a big way during the first third of the season.
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