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December 7, 2013
Reagan talks about return to Kansas
Not long after Rice won the Conference USA championship against Marshall, Kansas head coach Charlie Weis announced John Reagan would join his staff as the offensive coordinator and offensive line coach.
Earlier in the day Reagan's offense at Rice scored 41 points helping the Owls win the title. Last year Rice's offense was the second most productive in their school's history under Reagan's guidance.
Reagan will have to make a quick clothing change going from Rice to Jayhawks gear as he will hit the road recruiting immediately. He is expected to be recruiting for Kansas on Sunday.
"I will be in homes possibly as early as tomorrow," Reagan said. "I will be traveling around the country and see kids that are already committed and hopefully seeing offensive linemen. Obviously I will have to do some catching up but at the same time I am looking forward to the work that is involved with it."
The good news for Kansas is Reagan will be a quick learner. He is already experienced at selling recruits on the University of Kansas. He spent five years at Kansas under Mark Mangino helping the Jayhawks win three bowl games. He won't need a lot of studying on what it takes to convince a recruit to pick Kansas.
"There is no doubt in my mind that the University supports football not just within the athletic department but across the University," Reagan said. "I know the fans want a great product on the field and they are willing to come support that product. That is the biggest thing that helps. It helps in this position needing a quick turnaround for me recruiting because I am familiar with Kansas. It helps that I have been there before and have belief in the university and the football program. It is easy for me to share that belief."
That is the first part in helping get the program to pick up more wins but it won't solve everything. Reagan knows there will be a lot of work other than just recruiting.
"Now does that help you win games?," Reagan said. "No. But it does help you to get players that can help you win games. It is a matter of coming in and putting together an offense that will be successful."
With the new NCAA recruiting rules in place Reagan understands they need to move quickly on recruits. The rule changes don't allow for official recruiting visits after this weekend.
"I think it is important to make sure that we have the talent that we need in place to be as good as we can possibly be," he said. "With the new NCAA calendar the recruiting goes dead pretty quick. Once that happens we can start piecing things together. I look forward to doing that. There is a lot of knowledge in that football complex. I'm looking forward to tapping into that knowledge and putting together an offense."
When Weis reached out to Reagan it didn't take long for him to decide to return to Kansas. It gives him the chance to be close to his children who still live in Lawrence and others he got to know from his first time at Kansas.
"Obviously the five years that I was there were important to me," Reagan said. "They were exciting years for me and KU football. I am very excited to get back. With my children there that is a great part of that but at the same time what was done when I was there, we can do again. I look forward to coming in and help rebuilding the program."
Reagan has stayed in touch with Clint Bowen who was officially named the defensive coordinator today. It also gives him the chance to exchange ideas and grow with a new staff and set of ideas.
"With coach Weis he brings such a wealth of knowledge and experience," Reagan said. "So I am looking forward to that. I am also looking forward to blending ideas and putting my take on things. He has a great staff and I am looking forward to reuniting with Clint Bowen and some of those guys."
Reagan got his first graduate assistant job at Oklahoma State when Kansas defensive line coach Buddy Wyatt held the same position on that staff. He also got his first coaching job at Albany the same college where Dave Campo got his start.
"I have great friends I made while I was there and I am looking forward to being able to reconnect with some of them," Reagan said. "I have great respect for what coach Weis is trying to put together having played them the last two years it is easy to see the improvement they have had. Those kids at Kansas are playing hard and in my opinion that is the first step."