Feb 11, 2021; Lawrence, Kansas, USA; A general view of the Kansas Jayhawks center court logo at Allen Fieldhouse before a game against the Iowa State Cyclones. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Kansas hires Travis Goff as AD

Travis Goff, Northwestern’s deputy director of athletics, was hired Monday to be Kansas’ athletic director.

Goff, a Kansas alumnus, has spent nine years at Northwestern after previously working in the Tulane athletic department.

He takes over in Lawrence at a time when the Jayhawks’ two most high-profile programs are in turmoil.

The Kansas AD job was vacated last month when Jeff Long resigned in the wake of a scandal surrounding Les Miles, the school’s then-football coach. Miles was fired when allegations surfaced regarding sexual misconduct during his time at LSU. Long was questioned for having hired Miles, who was ousted due to the scandal after his team went 0-9 last season.

In addition, the men’s basketball team, typically a national powerhouse, is facing charges of NCAA violations.

Kansas chancellor Douglas Girod said in a statement, in part, “Travis stood out among the candidates due to his experience, his reputation as a man of integrity, and his demonstrated ability to connect with faculty, staff, alumni and donors.

“I am especially impressed with Travis’ vision for KU. Travis understands the challenges we face and the changing landscape of collegiate athletics. At the same time, he is well-positioned to help us build on our recent successes in student-athlete healthcare, diversity and inclusion, and student-athlete academic achievement.

“The fact that he is a Jayhawk is an added bonus and will undoubtedly serve him well as he moves Kansas Athletics forward.”

Goff added in a statement, in part, “It truly is an honor and a privilege to steward the next chapter of Kansas Athletics, and I am extremely grateful to Chancellor Girod for his belief in me and our shared vision for the future. With a long history of success, unwavering partnership with campus leaders, and the unparalleled passion of the Jayhawk fanbase, this is one of the most humbling responsibilities and opportunities in college athletics.”

–Field Level Media

Nov 2, 2019; Lawrence, KS, USA; A general view of a Kansas Jayhawks helmet during the game against the Kansas State Wildcats at David Booth Kansas Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Kansas boots No. 1 signee over violence allegations

Dec 26, 2020; Detroit, Michigan, USA; Detroit Lions quarterback Chase Daniel (4) drops back to pass against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers during the second quarter at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

Wide receiver Quaydarius Davis, the highest-rated recruit in Kansas history, will not play for the Jayhawks after being accused of violence via social media.

“Yesterday, after the allegations referencing a football recruit were brought to our attention, we immediately contacted individuals with knowledge on the matter to try and learn more about what happened,” read a statement from the university, issued Friday. “Based on the information we were able to gather KU football has terminated the recruitment of this individual and communicated to him that he will no longer be recruited to play football at the University of Kansas

Davis, a four-star prospect from Skyline High School in Dallas, is ranked as the No. 23 wide receiver in the nation by the 247Sports composite. He had scholarship offers from about two dozen schools but signed his letter of intent with Kansas last month.

He previously had been committed to Southern California, Texas and SMU.

The social media post in question shows a photo of two women, which appears to have been taken in a health-care setting. One of the women has a cut on her lip and one eye seems to be swollen shut. The post, by a friend of the apparently injured woman, also makes reference to Davis, and The Dallas Morning News confirmed that the player indeed was being accused of harming her.

As of Friday, there were no active arrest warrants for Davis, the newspaper said. The online records of the jail in Dallas County showed no one named Quaydarius Davis being held Saturday morning.

The Jayhawks, who finished 0-9 (0-8) in 2020, are starting from scratch with their program again. The school fired coach Les Miles last month after allegations surfaced that he sexually harassed female students when he coached at LSU. He was replaced by assistant coach Emmett Jones on an interim basis.

Kansas has not had a winning season since 2008.

–Field Level Media

Oct 31, 2020; Lawrence, Kansas, USA; Kansas Jayhawks head coach Les Miles leaves the field after checking on an injury during the game against the Iowa State Cyclones at David Booth Kansas Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Kansas tabs Emmett Jones as interim coach

Kansas named Emmett Jones to be the school’s interim coach on Thursday in the wake of the departure of Les Miles.

Jones has spent the past two seasons with the Jayhawks as receivers coach and also served as passing game coordinator in 2020.

“Emmett’s relationship with our football student-athletes is vital as we venture through this time of transition within our football program and athletics department,” interim athletic director Kurt Watson said in a news release. “I am confident in his abilities to ensure this program functions at a high level in preparation for the 2021 season.”

Watson said he also interviewed defensive coordinator D.J. Eliot, offensive coordinator Mike DeBord and tight ends coach/recruiting coordinator Joshua Eargle. DeBord had been handling the day-to-day operations since Miles was placed on administrative leave last Friday related to issues that occurred during his tenure at LSU.

Jones was thankful for the opportunity, and he is likely in line to land an interview for the permanent coaching position.

“Since arriving here, I have developed a deep love of this program and university, and it is an honor to be named interim head coach,” Jones said in the news release. “I will rely on our talented assistant coaches, as well as (director of sports performance) Ben Iannacchione and the strength and conditioning staff to guide our student-athletes and be there for them on and off the field.”

Jones spent four seasons at Texas Tech (2015-18) before being hired by Miles at Kansas. His only head coaching experience was at South Oak Cliff High in Dallas from 2012-14.

The scandal surrounding Miles, who was the head coach at LSU for 11-plus seasons, erupted amid reports last week that former athletic director Joe Alleva urged the school to fire him in 2013.

Allegations surfaced that Miles made sexual advances toward female students and also made comments about women in the athletic department that were sexist or insulting.

Miles, 67, had a 114-34 record at LSU, but was dismissed after a 2-2 start in 2016. His team won the BCS national championship in 2007 and was the national runner-up in 2011.

Kansas athletic director Jeff Long, who hired Miles at Kansas, was forced out due to the situation earlier this week.

The Jayhawks were 0-9 last season and 3-18 in Miles’ two campaigns. Kansas is 21-108 over the past 11 seasons.

–Field Level Media

Oct 31, 2020; Lawrence, Kansas, USA; Kansas Jayhawks head coach Les Miles watches team warm ups before the game against the Iowa State Cyclones at David Booth Kansas Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Kansas, coach Les Miles agree to part ways

Just days after he was placed on administrative leave, Kansas and football coach Les Miles agreed to part ways, the school announced late Monday night.

Offensive coordinator Mike DeBord, who was named as acting coach Friday when Miles was put on leave, will remain acting head coach until an interim coach is hired.

The scandal surrounding Miles, who was the head coach at LSU for 12 seasons, erupted amid reports last week that a former athletic director in Baton Rouge urged the school to fire him in 2013. Allegations surfaced that Miles made sexual advances toward female students and also made comments about women in the athletic department that were sexist or insulting.

Kansas athletic director Jeff Long said in a statement Friday that the school would “fully review the material” emerging from the reports about Miles at LSU. Long said he did “not want to speculate on a timeline for our review because it is imperative we do our due diligence.”

On Monday, Long said he was “extremely disappointed for our university, fans and everyone involved with our football program. There is a lot of young talent on this football team, and I have no doubt we will identify the right individual to lead this program.

“We will begin the search for a new head coach immediately with an outside firm to assist in this process. We need to win football games, and that is exactly what we’re going to do.”

In a statement issued by Kansas, Miles said, “This is certainly a difficult day for me and for my family. I love this university and the young men in our football program. I have truly enjoyed being the head coach at KU and know that it is in a better place now than when I arrived. To our student-athletes, I want you to remember that you came to play for KU and earn a degree here. So, I implore you to stay and build on what we started and do all of the things we talked about doing together. There is a bright future for all of you and for KU Football.”

Miles, who had a 114-34 record at LSU, was only 3-18 at Kansas, including an 0-9 mark in 2020.

An outside law firm that was tasked with reviewing how LSU handled allegations of sexual misconduct involving the coach and female students working in the department was critical of the school.

“The issue is whether the University responded to this report against (Les Miles) in a manner consistent with then-existing legal guidance, well-recognized best practices, and institutional policy. The answer is ‘no,’” the investigation concluded.

–Field Level Media

Sep 26, 2020; Waco, Texas, USA; Kansas Jayhawks head coach Les Miles during the game between the Bears and the Jayhawks at McLane Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Report: AD at LSU recommended firing Les Miles in 2013

The former athletic director at LSU recommended the firing of coach Les Miles in 2013 — three years before he was dismissed — because of allegations of sexual advances on female students and comments about women in the athletic department that were sexist or insulting.

That information was included in the report of an investigation conducted by the outside law firm of Husch Blackwell, which was charged with reviewing how the university handled allegations of sexual misconduct in the athletic department. The reported was released Friday, with USA Today and ESPN publishing portions of it.

Husch Blackwell wasn’t hired to determine the guilt or innocence of Miles but rather to determine if LSU responded properly to reports of incidents involving the coach and female students working in the department.

“The issue is whether the University responded to this report against [Les Miles] in a manner consistent with then-existing legal guidance, well-recognized best practices, and institutional policy. The answer is ‘no,’ ” the investigation concluded.

Miles, 67, was the coach at LSU from 2005 until he was fired four games into the 2016 season, when the Tigers got off to a 2-2 start. LSU won the national championship in 2007 and was runner-up in 2011.

Miles is now the coach at Kansas, which has not yet commented on the most recent report. A school spokesman previously said Kansas officials weren’t aware of any of the sexual misconduct allegations when he was hired prior to the 2019 season.

Miles has denied all allegations of misconduct. His attorney, Peter Ginsberg, declined to comment to ESPN on Friday.

Witnesses cited in the report said Miles took part in interviewing young women who applied for jobs with the team beginning in 2012 and wanted them to be pretty, blonde and with certain physical attributes.

A separate report released Thursday included allegations of Miles sending text messages to young women, taking them to his condominium and making them feel uncomfortable in general. In one case, he is reported to have kissed a student and offered to take her to a hotel, all while telling her that he could assist her in her career.

Sharon Lewis, who worked as the director of recruiting, is quoted in the latest report as saying she reported “significant alleged misconduct” by Miles that took place beginning in 2009 and lasted until his departure. The Husch Blackwell report said her allegations were not properly investigated by the university.

Lewis recounted how a female student worker came to her “completely traumatized” about something that happened to her when she and Miles were alone. Lewis said the student repeatedly said, “You know what you did to me.”

At least two other young women came forward with their allegations, and a previous investigation in 2013 concluded Miles should be reprimanded but that his conduct did not rise to the level of sexual misconduct. The Husch Blackwell report disagreed.

Former athletic director Joe Alleva recommended Miles’ dismissal to F. King Alexander, then the incoming president of LSU, and the school’s legal team shortly after.

“I want us to think about which scenario is worse for LSU. Explaining why we let him go or explaining why we let him stay,” Alleva wrote in an email, which was included in the report released Friday. “I believe he is guilty of insubordination, inappropriate behavior, putting the university, athletic dept and football program at great risk. I think we have cause. I specifically told him not to text, call or be alone with any student workers and he obviously didn’t listen. I know there are many possible outcomes and much risk either way, but I believe it is in the best interest in the long run to make a break.”

Instead, Miles received a written reprimand, a requirement for counseling and a written order not to have contact with female student employees in person, on the phone or via text.

The report said LSU did not have appropriate staffing or resources in its Title IX office to investigate complaints. Title IX prohibits sex discrimination in a school’s educational programs and other activities.

LSU interim president Tom Galligan Jr. vowed quick action on Friday, saying he plans to enact “every one of those 18 recommendations” that Husch Blackwell included in its report, per ESPN.

“We as an institution failed to live up to our commitments,” he said. “We let some of those who were depending on us down. It is clear our institution as a whole deserves blame. This is an example of serious institutional failure, but people also made mistakes we cannot ignore. That cannot and must not go unaddressed.”

Last week, The Advocate reported Miles had settled with at least one woman who accused him of sexual harassment. Reached then by the local newspaper, Miles said, “That’s not true.”

USA Today’s reporting on sexual misconduct within the athletic department at LSU caused the university to contract with Husch Blackwell to audit roughly 60 sexual misconduct cases from 2016 to 2018.

Miles had a 114-34 record at LSU. He is 3-18 at Kansas.

–Field Level Media

Sep 12, 2020; Lawrence, Kansas, USA; Kansas Jayhawks head coach Les Miles is interviewed before a game against the Coastal Carolina Chanticleers at David Booth Kansas Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports

Report: Les Miles hosted female students at LSU-area condo

LSU was so concerned by the behavior of former football coach Les Miles when it came to female students that it reprimanded him, ordered him to stop being alone with them and told him to no longer hire the young women to babysit his children, USA Today reported Thursday.

The newspaper said the findings are included in a 2013 internal investigative report released by LSU on Thursday — a report it sued the university to get.

The document includes allegations of Miles sending text messages to the young women, taking them to his condominium and making them feel uncomfortable in general. In one case, he is reported to have kissed a student and offered to take her to a hotel, all while telling her that he could assist her in her career.

Miles denies the allegations, his attorney, Peter Ginsberg, said.

The investigation didn’t uncover a sexual relationship with any of the women. For his part, Miles said he was serving as a mentor to the students.

Last week, The Advocate reported Miles had settled with at least one woman who accused him of sexual harassment. Reached then by the local newspaper, Miles said, “That’s not true.”

USA Today’s reporting on sexual misconduct within the athletic department at LSU caused the university to contract with outside law firm Husch Blackwell to audit roughly 60 sexual misconduct cases from 2016 to 2018.

Findings of the investigation are expected to be released on Friday.

Miles, 67, is now the head coach at Kansas, where he has a 3-18 record in two seasons with the Jayhawks.

Kansas officials didn’t immediately comment on Thursday’s report but issued this statement on Feb. 24.

“The University of Kansas is aware of a media report today involving KU head football coach Les Miles. We have spoken with Coach Miles about the allegations in the story and will continue to gather information that is made available to us. KU was not aware of these allegations when Coach Miles was hired in 2018. Because this involves Coach Miles’ former employer and pre-dates his time at KU, and because we do not have factual knowledge about details of these allegations, it is not appropriate for us to comment further.”

He was 114-34 in 11-plus seasons at LSU. His team won the BCS national championship in 2007 and was the national runner-up in 2011. He won 10 or more games on seven occasions with the Tigers.

His last 10-win season occurred in 2013.

Miles was 19-10 over his final two-plus seasons and was fired after a 2-2 start in 2016. He coached at Oklahoma State prior to LSU.

He is one of only six active coaches to have won an NCAA championship, joining Nick Saban, Dabo Swinney, Jimbo Fisher, Mack Brown and Ed Orgeron.

–Field Level Media

Sep 26, 2020; Waco, Texas, USA; Kansas Jayhawks head coach Les Miles during the game between the Bears and the Jayhawks at McLane Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Reports: Les Miles paid to settle sexual harassment case

Former LSU coach Les Miles reportedly was investigated for sexual harassment of student workers early last decade and reached a settlement with at least one of the women, according to multiple reports on Wednesday.

According to The Advocate, the settlement doesn’t show up in court records in Baton Rouge, La., and emerged amid a investigation into how LSU has handled allegations of sexual misconduct.

USA Today sued LSU in January for copies of the Miles investigation report after the university refused to release it. A judge ordered that it remain sealed until March 30, when a trial to hear Miles and LSU’s objections will be heard.

LSU also has retained the outside law firm Husch Blackwell to audit roughly 60 sexual misconduct cases from 2016 to 2018.

The investigation involving Miles reportedly occurred in 2013, three years before he was fired by the school after the football program’s fortunes dropped significantly from the established level earlier in Miles’ tenure.

The Advocate reached Miles on Wednesday, and he denied he made sexual advances toward a student intern.

“That’s not true,” Miles said.

Miles declined to answer questions about the reported settlement.

Miles, 67, is now the head coach at Kansas, where he has a 3-18 record in two seasons with the Jayhawks.

He was 114-34 in 11-plus seasons at LSU. His team won the BCS national championship in 2007 and was the national runner-up in 2011. He won 10 or more games on seven occasions with the Tigers.

His last 10-win season occurred in 2013.

Miles was 19-10 over his final two-plus seasons and was fired after a 2-2 start in 2016. He coached at Oklahoma State prior to LSU.

LSU spokesman Jim Sabourin released the following statement to USA Today: “We are not in a position to comment on these allegations, as there is currently a court order prohibiting the disclosure of any related information.”

Kansas officials told USA Today that the school didn’t know about the allegations when Miles was hired. The school said it spoke to Miles and is gathering more information.

“Because this involves Coach Miles’ former employer and pre-dates his time at KU, and because we do not have factual knowledge about details of these allegations, it is not appropriate for us to comment further,” spokesman Dan Beckler said.

–Field Level Media

Oct 31, 2020; Lawrence, Kansas, USA; Kansas Jayhawks head coach Les Miles talks with an assistant on the sidelines during the game against the Iowa State Cyclones at David Booth Kansas Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Mike DeBord named offensive coordinator at Kansas

The Kansas Jayhawks on Tuesday announced the hiring of Mike DeBord as offensive coordinator.

DeBord, 64, is a former head coach at Central Michigan and spent last season as an offensive analyst at Michigan. DeBord is reunited with Kansas head coach Les Miles, with whom he worked at Michigan in the early 1990s.

“This is a great day for Kansas football,” Miles said. “We are adding a coach with a wealth of experience in Mike. He has squared off with just about every defensive scheme in the book, and has worked within and led several offensive systems. In addition to the qualities he brings as a football coach, he is a man of high character, and will be an outstanding addition to our program as we continue to instill the culture we want in place.”

DeBord, who turns 65 on Sunday, previously served as the offensive coordinator with the Wolverines (1997-99, 2006-07), at Tennessee (2015-16) and Indiana (2017-18). DeBord went 12-34 in four seasons as head coach at Central Michigan (2000-03).

He was also an assistant in the NFL with the Chicago Bears (2010-12) and the Seattle Seahawks (2008-09).

DeBord replaces Brent Dearmon, who left last month to take the offensive coordinator job at Middle Tennessee State.

“I can’t wait to get started,” DeBord said.

–Field Level Media

Dec 5, 2020; Lubbock, Texas, USA; Kansas Jayhawks quarterback Miles Kendrick (3) rushes against the Texas Tech Red Raiders defense in the first half at Jones AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Michael C. Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

Garibay, Texas Tech hand Kansas another defeat

Texas Tech overcame a lethargic offensive performance with a stingy defense, including a key fourth-down stop in the fourth quarter, to survive a 16-13 decision against winless Kansas on Saturday.

In their 2020 regular-season finale, the Red Raiders eked out the win on Jonathan Garibay’s 36-yard field goal that was partially blocked with 5:36 left in the game, his third of the day.

Emblematic of an ugly game between two of the Big 12 Conference’s worst teams, Garibay also missed three other kicks, including a 45-yarder with two minutes to go that gave the Jayhawks one final chance.

But the last Kansas series ended like most of the previous chances — with no damage done — in large part because of the Raiders’ defense.

Texas Tech (4-6, 3-6 Big 12 Conference) stifled the Jayhawks (0-9, 0-8) most of the day and limited them to 214 total yards on 73 snaps. The Red Raiders held Kansas to 2.5 yards per rush, logged 12 tackles for loss (four sacks) and pestered Jayhawk quarterback Miles Kendrick almost every time he set up to throw.

Meanwhile, Texas Tech ran the ball well with 293 yards, led by Xavier White with 135 yards, but three lost fumbles left the window of opportunity wide open for the Jayhawks. One of those turnovers created a 13-13 deadlock when Kansas’ Daniel Hishaw squirted through a hole on the right side for a 12-yard touchdown run with 10:46 to play.

Garibay put the Raiders in front with a 47-yard field goal at the 8:56 mark of the first quarter, and the lead swelled to 10-0 when receiver Myles Price rambled 70 yards on a reverse.

KU’s Jacob Borcila connected on field goals late in the second and third quarters to keep his team in range, 13-6 after three quarters. Hishaw’s touchdown knotted the score and forced the Red Raiders to respond.

They did so with a 10-play, 52-yard drive that quarterback Alan Bowman kept alive with a 6-yard scramble to convert a fourth down with eight minutes to go. Garibay booted the game-winning kick moments later to send the Jayhawks into their last game trying to avoid the program’s second winless season since 1954.

–Field Level Media

Oct 24, 2020; Lubbock, Texas, USA;  Texas Tech Red Raiders running back SaRodorick Thompson (4) rushes for a touchdown against the West Virginia Mountaineers in the first half at Jones AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Michael C. Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

Kansas set to face last foe it beat: Texas Tech

Late in a strange season with not much at stake for either team, motivation figures to be a challenge when Kansas visits Texas Tech on Saturday in a matchup of teams ready to turn the page to 2021.

However, there is some fuel in that particular tank for both the Jayhawks (0-8, 0-7 Big 12) and Red Raiders (3-6, 2-6).

“I feel like it’s motivation just to go out with a bang, create momentum for next season and be able to look back and be a team that had a winning record at home,” Red Raiders receiver Erik Ezukanma said.

There is actually a little more for Texas Tech to ponder.

Last fall, amid a series of games that slipped through the Red Raiders’ fingers in the closing minutes, a loss to Kansas stung at a different level.

After leading 17-0 in the first half and 34-27 midway through the fourth quarter, Texas Tech blocked a Jayhawks field-goal attempt in the closing seconds, and Red Raiders defensive back Douglas Coleman recovered. He started downfield with the return before inexplicably trying to lateral to a teammate who wasn’t close enough to accept the pitch.

Kansas long snapper Logan Klusman covered the loose ball at the 14-yard line with two seconds remaining to give kicker Liam Jones a second chance, and this time Jones connected from 32 yards for a 37-34 Jayhawks victory.

Kansas hasn’t won since then, losing 12 in a row, and the means to the outcome that night isn’t something either team will forget any time soon.

“Put on the tape from last year,” second-year Red Raiders coach Matt Wells said during a weekly media session on Monday. “We remember. We remember that game in Lawrence really good.”

There is some notable inspiration for the Jayhawks as well.

With a roster built around 26 freshmen — the most in the country — Kansas has been battered and bruised in head coach Les Miles’ second season. The Jayhawks have allowed 38 points or more in every game this season and 47 or more in six of their seven league contests. This week and next at home against Texas are the last chances for Kansas to avoid the program’s second winless season since 1955.

In a 59-23 loss against TCU last week, six freshmen started on offense and Kansas used three quarterbacks. Junior Miles Kendrick was at the wheel the entire second half and produced 166 passing yards and two touchdown passes with on interception. Freshman Jalon Daniels had started six of the previous seven games but never got back on the field against TCU after Kendrick took over.

“I think this week will be a week of practice that we’ll enjoy the competition between those two guys,” Miles said during his weekly media session.

Texas Tech got plenty of spark on offense as well last week in a 50-44 loss at Oklahoma State that punctured the Red Raiders’ bid for a .500 season.

Buoyed by big plays, especially in the running game, Texas Tech torched the Cowboys’ defense for 639 total yards. Quarterback Alan Bowman passed for 384 yards and three touchdowns, but the most encouraging signs came on the ground, where SaRodorick Thompson ran for 133 yards and two touchdowns while Xavier White added 98 yards and a score.

The big offensive day bodes well with the Red Raiders set to face Kansas. The Jayhawks rank last in the Big 12 in rushing defense, allowing 5.7 yards a carry and 229.1 yards per game.

–Field Level Media