Kansas football: Jayhawks get a moral win in road loss to Texas

Head coach Les Miles of Kansas football leads players onto the field prior to a game. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
Head coach Les Miles of Kansas football leads players onto the field prior to a game. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images) /

Kansas football took #15 Texas down to the wire in one of the most fun college football games of the year. The Jayhawks came so close to winning the game, but in the 50-48 loss comes another moral victory.

Kansas football fans may be getting tired of the moral victories, but it’s all part of the long road ahead. The Jayhawks lost a heartbreaker to Texas on the road by a game-winning field goal as time expired. New offensive coordinator Brent Dearmon had the Kansas offense clicking, and it was almost enough to win the game.

Here’s the thing though: Kansas football just put itself on the radar. The game wasn’t a fluke or an accident, the Jayhawks really outplayed Texas for a good portion of the game. Save a few special teams errors, Kansas would have won that game, but that’s irrational thinking at this point.

The main takeaway is this: Kansas football can play with anybody in the Big 12. Looking at the final five games on the schedule, the Jayhawks will face Texas Tech and Kansas State at home, then travel to Oklahoma State and Iowa State before returning home to finish the season against Baylor. Both of the next two games for Kansas are winnable.

This was Brent Dearmon’s first game as the offensive coordinator for Kansas, just imagine what he can do against Texas Tech and Kansas State now that he has some experience under his belt. He knows what works and what doesn’t, and he can make adjustments following the loss to Texas.

The main two areas Kansas will have to improve in though are special teams and defense. The playcalling on defense seemed questionable, as Texas was allowed to drive the length of the field to set up a game-winning field goal without much resistance. A more aggressive style is what many are calling for, but time will tell whether or not the philosophy on defense changes.

Oh boy, special teams. They can make or break a team, and last night Kansas was on the wrong end of the equation.

Kicker Liam Jones was 2/4 for the night on field goals and 4/5 on extra points; however, Jones really only missed one field goal. The Longhorns blocked an extra point and took it back for two points, which really hurts considering the Jayhawks lost by two points. The Longhorns also blocked another field goal.

All in all, Kansas missed out on seven points due to the kicking game, as well as gave up two. The nine-point swing ended up being the difference in the ballgame. Kansas showed that they can play tonight, but they aren’t good enough to make mistakes like they did, especially on the road against a team like Texas. It just can’t happen.

If you haven’t yet, check out the highlights from the game by clicking below.

Watch: Kansas highlights against Texas in 50-48 loss. light. Hot

Still, the Kansas offense proved that they can play with the best of them in the Big 12. It’s a welcome display for many Kansas football fans that have had to deal with an incompetent football team for far too long. Make sure to get to The Booth next week at 6:00 PM to watch the Jayhawks take on Texas Tech, as the moral victories will hopefully turn into wins on the field.