La Tech Postgame Notes

News and notes while wrapping up KU's 29-0 victory over Louisiana Tech Saturday night at Memorial Stadium, and giving props to former Kansas standout and NFL Hall of Famer Mike McCormack, who was added to the Kansas Football Ring of Honor at halftime.

McCormack, the 16th former Jayhawk to have his name added on the north bowl at Memorial Stadium, lettered at KU from 1948-50 and earned All-Big Seven Honors as a tackle in 1950. He achieved even greater success in the NFL, playing in six Pro Bowls with the New York Yanks (rookie year in 1951) and Cleveland Browns, where he made his name as one of the game’s greatest offensive tackles while opening holes for the legendary running back Jim Brown.
    
McCormack retired from the Browns in 1962 and was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1984. He later served as head coach of the Philadelphia Eagles, Baltimore Colts and Seattle Seahawks. He was also president and general manager of the Seahawks. In 1993, he became team president and general manager of the expansion Carolina Panthers before retiring from the organization in 1997.

McCormack’s most memorable moment was arguably the 1954 NFC title game at Municipal Stadium in Cleveland, where he helped lead the Browns to a 56-10 victory over Detroit. Playing middle defensive guard (he was later switched back to offensive tackle for the remainder of his career the following season), McCormack stole the ball from Lions quarterback Bobby Layne to set up an early touchdown.
    
McCormack said he’ll never forget the excitement after the game.
    
“The fans crowded onto the field and went berserk," he told the Baltimore Sun in 1995. "Players had no police escorts then; it took us one-half hour to get off the field. People were asking, begging, for souvenirs. I gave my helmet to one kid, the chin strap to another. All I kept was my jersey."

McCormack’s name in the KU football Ring of Honor is next to Curtis McClinton and John Hadl. McClinton’s name was added to the ring last season.

*KU’s win marked the Jayhawks’ 11th consecutive home victory and 16th straight home win against non-conference foes. Kansas’ victory was its 20th win in its last 22 home games, and the Jayhawks’ 17th win in their last 19 games.

*KU’s 29-0 victory was just the second shutout in the Mangino era. The first shutout came on Sept. 8, 2007, when the Jayhawks blanked Southeastern Louisiana, 62-0.

*KU scored on its opening drive, a 74-yard drive which resulted in a 28-yard field goal by sophomore Jacob Branstetter. This marked the first time Kansas had scored on an opening drive since Nov. 18, 2006 against K-State. That drive also ended in a field goal.

*Two freshmen make their first starts for KU, right tackle Jeremiah Hatch and wide receiver/punt returner Daymond Patterson. Patterson, a speedster from Mesquite, Texas, recorded three career highs with eight catches for 130 yards and two touchdowns.

*The 48,621 in attendance at Memorial Stadium was the second-largest crowd all time for a non-conference home game. KU set both a non-conference home attendance record and single-game mark last Saturday against FIU with a crowd of 52, 112.

*Patterson and sophomore Dezmon Briscoe (seven receptions for 146 yards and one TD) both had over 100 receiving yards, marking the first time since the 2006 Nebraska game when two Jayhawks reached 100 yards. Briscoe’s touchdown gives him 11 for his career, which ties him for eighth place in school history for all-time receptions with Termaine Fulton and David Verser.

*Junior quarterback Todd Reesing completed 32 of 38 passes for a career-high 412 yards and three touchdowns. His 412 yards was the third-best passing game in KU history. Adam Barmann was the last Jayhawk to pass for over 400 yards (405) at Nebraska in 2006. Reesing’s 32 completions moved him into fifth place on KU’s career pass completions list with 359. And his 38 attempts put him in eighth place in school history with 560. Reesing’s 84 percent completion percentage against the Bulldogs was the fifth best all time at KU for a single game. He’s now completed an amazing 76.7 percent of his passes in his first two games (69-of 90).

*Branstetter played in his first career game after becoming eligible this week. He was three for three in field goals (28, 25, 26 yards). However, he did miss an extra point in the third quarter after Patterson’s 39-yard touchdown reception.

*Junior backup Angus Quigley led the team in rushing for the second straight game. Quigley rushed for a career-high 84 yards on 15 carries.

*Junior safety Darrell Stuckey recorded a career-high and team-best 10 tackles, including two for loss. He also had two pass breakups.

*KU will next face No. 17 South Florida (2-0) on Friday night in Tampa, Fla. The Bulls beat Central Florida, 31-24 in overtime Saturday night in Orlando. Matt Grothe passed for 346 yards and three touchdowns, including the game-winning 25-yard strike to Taurus Johnson in OT.

“Anytime you start off 2-0, it helps out with the rest of the year,” Grothe said.

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