The David Beaty football era at the University of Kansas will go down as one of the worst in the history – at a school that doesn’t have a good history to start with. However, the first-time head coach should get a tip of the cap for doing what many might not: simply accepting the challenge.
Let’s be honest, though – the job isn’t easy.
In fact, many would consider it career suicide. And for most, it has been. After posting a mark of 20-33, Terry Allen (1997-2001) never again became a head coach at a Power Five conference school.
Mark Mangino (2002-2009) won 50 and lost 48, but followed in Allen’s footsteps after a nasty dispute with then athletic director Lew Perkins. Turner Gill’s reign (2010-2011) lasted just 24 games. He’s currently at tiny Liberty University after winning five games at KU.
Charlie Weis (2011-2014) is now out of coaching. He’s likely counting his wads of cash at a very nice resort somewhere in the South Pacific following his six wins.
Simply put, coaches don’t come to Kansas to advance their careers. They come to get fired, take lesser jobs or retire. Now, Beaty has joined the ranks as he ends his 3-year KU career after being fired on Sunday.
The only coach in the last 30 years that left KU for a “better” job after succeeding in Lawrence was Glen Mason (1988-1996). Most would agree that Mason even messed that one up when he backed off his acceptance of the Georgia job to take the Minnesota gig a year later.
I’m sure that most young up-and-coming coaches are well aware of this cautionary Kansas tale. Why do coaches keep coming? Obviously, taking the job comes with a nice paycheck. Nice enough to set you and your family up for life if you are smart.
If you want more than just money, however, this might not be the job for you. For that reason, I applaud David Beaty. He took on the challenge of KU football and failed. No shame in that. Almost everyone fails here. It’s the same story that fans around these parts have endured for decades.
Here’s wishing coach Beaty the best in his next coaching endeavor, wherever that might be.