Jayhawk football fans will often look for as many bright spots as they can, given the struggles the program is currently having and have had in the past. Often times those ‘bright spots’ come in the form of individual recognition. Perhaps the team might not have success but if the individuals do then the team can take solace in that victory at the very least. That very situation is currently as the Jayhawks try to shrug off the very outspoken negative talk of their program they can celebrate the fact that two of their very own are on the preseason awards ‘Watch Lists.’
Ultimately, this really doesn’t mean much as players high on the list could fall off and the awards could be won by somebody not even on the list to begin with; however, that doesn’t take the joy out of celebrating the fact that even coming off a bad season there is still some positive recognition in store for the Jayhawks.
The two players are seniors Tim Biere and Daymond Patterson. Biere is on the watch list for the Mackey Award which goes to the best tight end in the country. Last year Biere caught 19 passes for 228 yards and 4 touchdowns. While those statistics may not seem that impressive, it’s key to remember that TE’s aren’t used in college as they are in the NFL. Biere averaged 12 yards a catch and proved to be a formidable target in the red zone, even with the anemic offense that Kansas had last year. With the advent of improved QB play, improved O-line play, and more experience in the system Biere is primed for a big season.
The second Jayhawk on the ‘watch list’ is Daymond Patterson. Patterson played a little as a recruited WR his freshman year, then switched to defensive back his sophomore year, and finally switched back and had a breakout year last year. Patterson lead all KU receivers with 60 receptions, for 487 yards and 2 touchdowns. A solid season for somebody who hadn’t played receiver in nearly two years. Patterson is ready to take the success he had last year and build upon it. There will be an infusion of talent with some freshmen wide receivers that are well regarded and Patterson will be their leader. I highly doubt that Patterson has much of a chance at winning the Belitnikoff award (for best WR), but the fact that he’s on the list means people have taken notice of his skill set which is another bright spot for Kansas going in to the season.