JayhawkSlant - Eriq Gilyard was sold on the KU coaches and players
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Eriq Gilyard was sold on the KU coaches and players

The Jayhawks have picked up a commitment from Eriq Gilyard, who is a player the coaching staff targeting since he entered the transfer portal.

Gilyard entered the portal in early October after playing four games for Central Florida this year. The Kansas staff started to build a relationship with him shortly after he announced he would transfer.

After several weeks of talking with the coaches over the phone he took an official visit to Lawrence two weekends ago.

“One thing that stood out was just how all the players have bought in,” Gilyard said. “It is rare that you go places, and everyone is on the same page, and a lot of the players got the same goal. You get the same feel from the coaches.

“The only thing I really had to do was put a face with a lot of the names there, meeting them in person, shaking their hands, and look them in the eye. But to really get to meet the players and see how they feel about the program and the direction it's going. That was big for me.”

Gilyard committed to the Jayhawks after seeing how the players and coaches were on the same page
Gilyard committed to the Jayhawks after seeing how the players and coaches were on the same page

During his recruiting Kansas safety Kenny Logan was mentioning Gilyard a lot on social media. The two are friends after growing up near each other.

“Me and Kenny grew up in the same area,” Gilyard said. “We've known each other for a while, and he has been like a primary recruiter, number one. Having that relationship with him, is definitely going to be big and played a big part of me coming there.”

Gilyard was also sold after meeting the coaches and staff who got to know him over time. There were a lot of phone calls and relationship-building with several people.

“The coaches come from winning prior to the schools they were at before,” Gilyard said. “It is not hard to see why Coach Leipold wins by the things he does, and his way works. I believe everybody kind of follows that. Just him being a great leader set in that role for everybody. Along with the assistant coaches they are all really cohesive.

He continued: “They work together well. Coach Simpson, you know, he's a great coach. I got to build a great relationship with him over time. Also speaking with Coach Ianello and Coach Aligo with the scouting and everything. They are just a great group of coaches and people.”

Gilyard’s stats speak for his game and ability, but one of the most impressive feats is being named to the AAC All-Academic team for three straight years.

“Academics has always been one of my strong suits and something that I took very highly,” he said. “I wouldn't say it's easy but being brought up that way and always focusing on academics is kind of being something that I, my parents and my support system focused on.”

It has been a long two months for Gilyard trying to find his next home. There have been a lot of calls, visits, and meetings with coaches. The most interest came from Kansas, SMU, Michigan State, Arizona, East Carolina, and Bowling Green.

“It feels great knowing that I'm going be in a great program and all of phone calls and everything, it's kind of open now,” he said. “So, I'm kind of settling in and I'll be graduating on Friday. It is all a relief now.”