Dez Makes History

Dez Briscoe (Steve Puppe photo)

Dezmon Briscoe made history Saturday at Memorial Stadium against Duke in the Jayhawks' 44-16 victory.

With six receptions for 117 yards, the junior receiver moved into first place on KU's career 100-yard receiving games list. Dez Briscoe now has nine 100-yard receiving games, including six straight. He also passed Mark Simmons and moved into second place on the school's career receiving yardage list.

Despite his lofty accomplishments, Briscoe was in no mood to celebrate after the game. He and fellow receiver Jonathan Wilson dropped some crucial passes from quarterback Todd Reesing.

"I felt like my first half game was what we needed to have the offense get to where it was," said Briscoe, who caught four passes for 106 yards and one touchdown in the first 30 minutes. "In the second half I felt like I left a couple balls on the field that I normally catch. I can't do anything about it now but let it go and focus on next week."
 
Briscoe said he was upset and surprised at KU's drops.

"We go through practice and we catch everything that's usually around us," he said. " For us to come into the game and have it end up happening is disappointing to a wide out."

However, KU coach Mark Mangino said the receivers have been dropping passes in practice, pointing to last Thursday's practice where they "had too  many drops." And as the coach added, "you play the way you practice."

"We got to get that cleaned up," Mangino said. "Don't worry. Coach Beaty (David, receivers coach) will get that cleaned up."

Briscoe, for one, didn't do much wrong the first half. He broke free for two impressive catches in the second quarter of 39 and 45 yards, respectively, helping set up touchdowns and breaking open a 7-all game.

Briscoe has definitely made his name as a big-play receiver. He and Reesing have great chemistry together.

"Dez is smart," Mangino said. "He understands the coverages. When he lines up, he knows at the snap of the ball how they're going to play him because he's had a lot of repetitions here. It's only his third year, but he's played a ton. He's a very, very smart kid, and he knows exactly how they play him and Todd knows how he's going to run the route versus those looks.

"Those guys have been together for a while, and they know each other. Todd knows exactly the leverage Dez has ... and Todd gets the ball there."

Briscoe, though, still seems a bit rusty after missing the season-opening game against Northern Colorado stemming from his suspension from spring ball for academic reasons.

"I think Dezmon still has to sharpen up a little bit," Mangino said. "I don't think he's at peak performance right now. He knows that. He will (get there) because he'll work at it."

Indeed, he will. Briscoe feels blessed to be playing again after being suspended earlier.

"Throughout  that break that I wasn't with the team it made me feel like I wasn't a student-athlete," Briscoe said. "I felt like I was just a student. Just the privilege of being a student athlete is something most people would love to do. So I mean I really appreciate it a lot more."

He'll be hungry heading into Saturday's showdown against Southern Mississippi at Memorial Stadium. After all, he wants to prove he can catch every ball thrown to him. And yes, Briscoe has a chance to make history again. He needs just 93 receiving yards to become KU's career receiving yardage leader.

Not bad for a guy just three games into his junior year.

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