Kansas football: Beating Baylor would be biggest win in the last ten years

Oct 27, 2018; Lawrence, KS, USA; Kansas Jayhawks fans cheer in the second half against the TCU Horned Frogs at Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports
Oct 27, 2018; Lawrence, KS, USA; Kansas Jayhawks fans cheer in the second half against the TCU Horned Frogs at Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports /

Amid Kansas football’s harrowing downfall the last ten years, they’ve still managed to pick up some big wins along the way.

The Jayhawks beat Boston College on the Eagles home turf as three-touchdown underdogs. They beat Texas for the first time in 78 years, which would only be their 2nd win that year. They had a stunning late-game field goal win at home against a Texas Tech team they’ve only beaten two times. They beat TCU on a botched fumble that would be their first win against the Frogs since they joined the Big 12. And, they had a big win at home against an unsuspecting 15th ranked Georgia Tech team, which was more of a testament to how overrated the Yellow Jackets were as they’d finish that year 6-7.

But none of these wins will add up to what a win against Baylor would mean. This Kansas football program has been finding a way to build its way back since former KU AD Lee Perkins took his relationship with former football coach Mark Mangino personally and ran him out of town.

Nothing was more catastrophic to this program than that one moment. Mangino had rebuilt Kansas into something respectable–a number two ranking in the AP poll and an Orange Bowl victory in 2007. But all of that would be crushed, and 12 years later, the Kansas administration is still trying to pick up the pieces.

That’s where a win against Baylor could come in handy. This win wouldn’t be just another big win; this could mark the turning point of a downtrodden program not only chastised by its fans but continuously used by college football fans and analysts around the country as the butt of the joke.

If Kansas beats Baylor, they’d no longer be multiple touchdown underdogs, at least not to any team not named Oklahoma. They’d no longer be the butt of the joke, although I’m sure the Bears would have a few memes to their expense. But most importantly, the nation would start to take the Jayhawks seriously, and in a way that would give the fans some pride.

This win could mark the beginning of the end of the vast disparity between other Big 12 programs and the Kansas football program. It could be the game fans look back on and say this is where the painful memories ended and the start of the good ones began.

It also gives momentum to this 2021 season, which after last season, the program desperately needs. It would mark the first time since 2009 that the Jayhawks would beat its first Big 12 opponent of the year. These are steps this program can build on.

But most importantly, the players deserve this win. They’ve worked harder than what any fan that has lasted through this abysmal decade of Kansas football would care to imagine.

These players have dealt with numerous coaching changes, playbook changes, administration changes, rule changes, and fan disappointment. They’ve had it worse than all of us. That’s why a win against Baylor wouldn’t only be great for the football program; it would be great for the players. It would give them a sense of accomplishment, something well-deserved.

A win against Baylor wouldn’t just change the trajectory of the season for the Kansas football program; it would change the trajectory of its future, especially in a time with so much uncertainty.

Kansas football needs this win; for their fans, for their players, and for their future. And if they can pull it off, this season could be one heck of a ride.

dark. Next. Jayhawks take on Baylor for first Big 12 contest