3. Incorporating more short routes for wide receivers
Kansas football has a tremendous safety blanket in Luke Grimm. He led the team in receiving yards (623) in 2022 but has just 18 receptions for 244 yards in 2023. Since conference play commenced, he’s caught seven passes. The Jayhawks can no longer rely on explosive touchdowns to get by in games — that became evident against Oklahoma State.
This isn’t to say that Andy Kotelnicki should stop drawing up deep balls every once in a while. Part of what makes this Kansas football team so exciting to watch are those big plays that get the fans on their feet. However, when everyone is 15-to-20 yards down the field on a first down, it can become difficult to move the ball.
There will be games where the run game can’t get it going. To counter the absence of those five to seven-yard gains that Devin Neal and Daniel Hishaw Jr. typically pick up, KU must look toward their slot receiver, Grimm, or tight end Mason Fairchild in short-yardage situations. A quick out or slant route for a few yards can go a long way for an offense.