Sources said that the review came as a result of a confrontation between Mark Mangino and a player.
But Mangino said at Tuesday's press conference that he didn't believe
the issue caused him to lose a team that has gone o'fer its last five.
"I haven't lost the team – not one bit," Mangino said. "I may have lost
some people around here, but it's not the players. Take it for what
it's worth. You decipher and see."
Mangino said he didn't wish to comment on the situation, nor on his
10-15 minute meeting with Perkins following the players meeting that
Mangino wasn't present for.
"I don't want to talk about the issues or what was said — this person
said this, and is this correct and all that," Mangino said. "I'm not
going to get into that. This is not the appropriate time for that."
Mangino said that any questions about his meeting with Perkins would
have to be directed to the athletics director.
"Yes, I had a brief meeting with him. If you want to know
what was said, I'm not disclosing it," Mangino said. "He's disclosing
information about the situation, I'm not. I'm focused on the task at
hand and want to stay on track. You'd have to ask him; I
don't know. We're all trying to get on a winning track here and we're
trying to get the train on the track, so I can't answer for him. That
would not be appropriate for me to try and speculate why."
At some point, something went wrong this season.
With his 5-0 start to the year, Mangino had garnered victories in 25 of
his last 31 games. But something went wrong, and the Jayhawks lost a
34-30 shocker with Colorado, due in part to self-inflicted mistakes.
That game was the start of a five game losing streak, putting Kansas at
the bottom of the Big 12 North with a 1-5 conference record and needing
a victory against either Texas or Missouri just to become bowl eligible.
"This is what comes when things aren't going well," Mangino said.
"You're going to find disgruntled people. It's a fact of any
organization, whether it's sports related or it's corporate — any
profession you're in. Our program has been successful and has done some
great things here and we're proud of it. The fact of the matter is that
we've lost some games in a row here. Nobody feels worse than I do about
it, and nobody is trying harder to get it straightened out. A fact of
life is that these types of things are going to come up when things
aren't going well and that's life. It's how it works."
"I don't really have much to say about it other than when you lose a
few games in a row, those type of things surface," Mangino said. "Those
type of issues come up. It's not uncommon. I don't take it lightly, but
I'm focused on Texas and I'm very comfortable with the way we manage
and run the football program here."
But at that same press conference, Kansas quarterback Todd Reesing said
that he didn't believe the problems were a matter of wins and losses.
"I don't think this has anything to do with the recent performance or
the number of games we've won," Reesing said.
"There's been some certain things that have been said, but I really
don't want to focus on that right now," Reesing continued. "It is what
it is. It's happening and it has nothing to do with playing Texas, so I
don't really see the relevancy in me talking about that."
It would be strange for Perkins to pull the trigger on a firing if it
were purely performance-based. Mangino is the first coach since Jack
Mitchell to put together a winning career record at Kansas, has taken
the Jayhawks to consecutive bowl games in the first time in the
program's history, and has had the Jayhawks bowl eligible in all but
two of his seven complete seasons. Kansas won 20 combined games in 2007
and 2008, and is just two years removed from a 12-1 campaign that
included an Orange Bowl victory.
Multiple other players, including freshman left tackle Tanner Hawkinson, declined to comment on the meeting.
Reesing said the timing was unfortunate.
"I told (the team) that this was going to be something that was going
to be hard to handle," Reesing said. "As you can tell, I've been
standing here five minutes and I've answered zero questions about the
game against Texas this Saturday. So needless to say, it's going to be
something that we're going to have to deal with."
"We're going to have to find a way to stay focused on this football
game because as you can see, the focus is not there from things outside
of our program," Reesing said. "I told the guys to not talk about it,
to not share anything that they don't need to talk about and worry
about Texas and our ability to prepare and get ready for them."
Situation Surrounding Mangino Remains Unclear
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