July 20, 2024

Jason Bean navigating Kansas through challenging Big 12 schedule

Kansas Jayhawks Football

Kansas quarterback Jason Bean drops back to attempt a pass in the fourth quarter against Iowa State Saturday November 4, 2023 at Jack Trice Stadium. (Lynn Harrington/stayaliveinpower5)

AMES, Ia. — The veteran is becoming the focal point of a surging Jayhawk team, and playing like one of the best quarterbacks in the Big 12.

After all, Jason Bean is 4-2 as a starter this season, and those two losses were on the road to teams ranked in the top-20. Bean is coming off his first road victory of the year as Kansas’ starter, and now his confidence is through the roof. He led Kanas to a win over Iowa State at Jack Trice Stadium last Saturday. It was the program’s first victory in Ames since 2008.

Bean had complete command of the huddle, and made others around him better. The Texas native completed 14 of his 23 passes for 287 yards and a touchdown. Bean’s 80-yard touchdown strike to wideout Lawrence Arnold midway through the fourth quarter, was the most explosive play of the game. It also put the Jayhawks up by double-digits.

The gunslinger was proud of his performance, and glad to see his chemistry in practice with Arnold paid off on the gridiron.

“It was a play we worked on all week, I feel like all game we kind of been baiting them to come down low enough for us to get past them on that play,” Bean said. “We did, LJ got behind him, I delivered him the ball, and he did the rest.”

Bean was a big reason why Kansas led Iowa State in total offense, plays, yards per play and time of possession. Not to mention the Jayhawks didn’t turn the ball over the entire game. Coach Lance Leipold is in awe of what Bean is accomplishing this fall, and couldn’t be more happy for the signal-caller.

“The numbers will probably not jump out at you, but again he’s so much different as far as his demeanor on the sideline,” Leipold said. “He’s anxious to get back out there and attack the situation, which is a great sign to see.”

Bean is currently third in the Big 12, and 22nd nationally in passing efficiency. No. 21 Kansas (7-2) has secured its’ first winning campaign since 2008, which means a lot to Bean because of his long journey. Winning in a hostile environment is only going to help the Jayhawks down the road in Bean’s mind.

“It’s huge, playing in a place like this, it’s a great college environment, and it’s a tough environment for any team to come play,” he said. “I think after that game a couple of years ago we understood the severity of the environment here, how much it could affect us, and I feel like we worked hard all week, and came out fighting.”

Kansas has Texas Tech, Kansas State and Cincinnati remaining on the slate. If the Jayhawks can win those games, they’ll likely be heading to Arlington to play for the Big 12 Championship. Bean is enjoying putting Kansas on the map, and doesn’t want it to be known as just a basketball school. The six-foot-three, 205-pounder has an opportunity to take the Jayhawks to new heights, and the fans can’t wait to see how it all plays out.