After a negotiating a $1.5 million lump sum contract buyout, former LSU Tigers head coach Les Miles re-entered the dating pool in search of a new coaching job. While rumors swirled that Miles was tied to the Kansas Jayhawks football program, a lot of doubt surrounded the 65-year-old football coach actually taking the leap.
According to multiple sources from Sports Illustrated, Kansas and Les Miles are finalizing a deal on Friday night to make him the new head coach of Kansas football at a time when the school needs him most.
After the University of Kansas and athletic director Jeff Long fired head coach David Beaty following the team’s 6-39 run in almost four seasons, the program needed a stable figurehead to finally return Kansas to relevancy.
Well, it appears like the Jayhawks football team, which hasn’t recorded a winning season since Mark Mangino’s 2008 team, has landed the biggest name on the head coaching market, and a national championship winning head coach is headed straight for Lawrence, Kansas.
After starting at Oklahoma State, and then taking over at Louisiana State University, Miles brought the program to the peak of college football by winning the 2007 BCS Championship over the Ohio State Buckeyes. “The Hat’s” 12 seasons in Baton Rouge leading the LSU football program resulted in a 114-34 record, including never winning less than eight games in a season.
However, a slow 2-2 start to the 2016 season got Miles canned, and head coach Ed Orgeron took the reigns from there, and the program has flourished ever since.
Miles is an elite recruiter and experience offensive line coach, so his first season leading the Jayhawks will be about rebuilding Kansas from the inside out. The team leads the Big 12 conference with 13 interceptions through their 3-7 start, but they rank in the middle of the conference in total offense and total defense.
An opportunistic defense can only get a team so far. They’ll be a hard-nosed, SEC-style football team under Les Miles that will look to change the narrative of not only football in the Big 12, but of Kansas’ football program as a whole.
Barring a last-minute change, the former LSU coach Les Miles is headed for Kansas, and if the past is any indicator, this Jayhawks team could be a dangerous program in 2019 and beyond.