Les Miles has chosen not to make the road trip to West Virginia after his recent COVID-19 diagnosis. This late decision will pose some changes for Kansas football tomorrow.
After a week of uncertainty, Kansas football head coach Les Miles has announced he will not be traveling with the team to Morgantown this weekend. The decision means that there will be a change in leadership as the game day closes in against the Mountaineers.
With Coach Miles working remotely in some form, tight ends coach and recruiting coordinator Josh Eargle will fill the role of head coach this Saturday. Miles has voiced his trust in the temporary transition of coaching in his statement: “I have full trust in my coaching staff and know our student-athletes are in great hands.”
We should feel comfortable that even with clearance to travel to Morgantown from Kansas Team Health, Coach Miles felt that the safer decision was putting his faith in his coaching staff.
It’s a positive sign to see that even with how much of a rocky start the Jayhawks have gotten off to this season, there is still a solid amount of confidence from Les Miles and his coaching staff to undertake operations until Les can jump back on the boat.
This being said, this will without a doubt be a challenge for Kansas on Saturday. This will put the responsibility on the shoulders of both coaches Josh Eargle and Brent Dearmon (offensive coordinator) to keep the Jayhawks organized on the field. It will be vital that Kansas finds offensive rhythm early on. Without it, West Virginia will be knocking on doors each drive unless we can keep up.
I think we should expect to see some form of communication from Les Miles while being remote, but only to a certain extent. On the fly decision making doesn’t mix well with a team playing 800 miles away. I imagine there have been previous discussions with the coaching staff, that had been expecting a situation where Coach Miles wouldn’t be present.
Miles’ absence will result in a few hiccups I’d assume, most presumably on the offensive side of the ball. Kansas will need to be on their toes against what is currently the Big 12’s top defense. Streamlined communication will be necessary tomorrow if the Jayhawks are going to keep up offensively with West Virginia and the absence of their head coach.
If Kansas has their ducks in a row, I think our coaching staff shouldn’t have any issues keeping the Jayhawks level this weekend. Miles’s absence will create a different scene on the sidelines. Communication and play play-calling will be different now that there is a new leader to report to. Hopefully, this transition will be well received by players to keep them organized on the field.
Kansas is set to square off with West Virginia tomorrow at 11 am CT, even somehow scoring a primetime television slot. The Jayhawks will hope to keep their composure tomorrow as they play on the road without their head coach. It doesn’t sound like the ideal situation for Kansas football right now, but we should expect the coaching staff to have things under control for our second Big 12 road test.