Saturday the Kansas Jayhawks fell to the Texas Longhorns in another game that represents a series of embarrassments over the course of the last month and a half. It started with Georgia Tech and defensive ineptitude and now things have come full circle with a loss to Texas featuring one of the more futile offensive efforts in Kansas history. For all the talk of modest improvements reality is starting to set in and Turner Gill might not be a part of the Kansas football future.
Gill was hired just two years ago following a Lew Perkins led investigation into the conduct of one of the most successful coaches in Kansas football history, Mark Mangino. It was a move that would ultimately lead to Mangino's firing and a quiet under the radar interview process that led to Gill's hiring.
The interesting thing about this situation for Kansas is that it wasn't a clear cut situation where a change was the desired result by most of the fanbase. You didn't have a coach heading off for greener pastures and you didn't have a coach that had failed miserable. Mangino had taken Kansas to an Orange Bowl two seasons prior to the investigation and his subsequent firing. So what you had at Kansas was a fanbase that reluctantly trusted in their athletic department and believed that the move was a necessary evil.
Enter into the picture Turner Gill and Gill walks in to a somewhat divided fanbase. One side is ready to turn the page and change the image. The other side is cautious that Kansas might have just thrown away a style and a coach that had proven effective.
Now we're a season and a half into the Gill experiment and Kansas has taken a dramatic turn for the worse. The abysmal state of the program has reunited a fanbase in a very short time and this time the man coaching Kansas isn't on the right side of things.
To make matters more difficult for Gill he is no longer reporting to the man that hired him. Perkins resigned from his perch atop Kansas athletics and Sheahon Zenger has been hired to pick up the pieces. For all the good Perkins did at the University, he certainly didn't leave things in a good place for Zenger and issue number one seems to be the football program.
Zenger is a "football guy". He has worked in and around football for much of his career including a stint early on under Bill Snyder at Kansas State. He knows and understands what it takes to run and build a football program and every week it becomes more apparent that Turner Gill might be in over his head.
There is still time. The Jayhawks have the full month of November on the calendar and a trip to Ames to take on the Iowa State Cyclones this week. Before the fanbase probably would have been good with "competitive". But Now Turner Gill might have to pull of a couple longshot miracles down the stretch because the clock is ticking on Turner Gill and time could be in short supply.