Kansas Recruiting 2012: Charlie Weis' New Challenges

GAINESVILLE, FL - SEPTEMBER 17: Offensive coordinatinator of the Florida Gators Charlie Weis points before the game against the Tennessee Volunteers at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium on September 17, 2011 in Gainesville, Florida. (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)

Kansas high schools don't produce enough talent to support even one decent BCS program. Charlie Weis has his work cut out for him in his attempt to upgrade the talent level at KU.

What kind of recruiter is Kansas getting in Charlie Weis? A successful one. Weis has had recruiting success at both Notre Dame and Florida. How much of that is due to to the inherent advantages at Notre Dame and Florida? It's tough to tell.

Weis will need to flash his Super Bowl rings quite often, because the advantages he had in South Bend and Gainesville are nowhere to be found in Lawrence, Kansas.

Charlie Weis will be plagued by the same lack of talent issue that other Kansas coaches faced -- and the gift schedule (no Oklahoma or Texas) given to Mark Mangino's Jayhawks in 2009 isn't coming back any time soon. 

RIvals.com saw fit to give a four-star rating to only one high school player in the entire state. One! And only six players received a rating of three stars. Now, Rivals only rated 15 Kansas high school players in all, which is a bit lazy, but if there were good players coming out of Kansas, Rivals would pay more attention. 

For some perspective, three high schools in Texas have more four-star prospects than the entire state of Kansas. And if you think Rivals is lazy, consider that 247 Sports didn't even bother to do a state-specific ranking for Kansas.

Charlie Weis does not have the ability to make top talent grow in Kansas high schools. But there are other options for Weis.

Kansas has a great network of junior colleges, aka JUCOs. Kids, typically from other states, will attend these junior colleges because they don't have the grades or skills to get into the programs they'd like to after high school. In the junior colleges, they grow, develop and fix their academics with the hope of transferring to a four-year university. 

While many states have done away with JUCO football, Kansas has not. And it has some of the best JUCO football in the country, along with Texas, Missisippi, California and Arizona. 

Rivals.com has five Kansas JUCO players among its top 50 in the country. That's leaps and bounds better than the high school talent being produced by the state.

Bill Snyder has famously made a living at Kansas State by keeping some of these top JUCO players from returning to their home states. 

Weis will attempt that, but Kansas State has a great relationship with these junior college coaches. Coaches have a large say in where their players play, and they aren't about to send them to a coach they don't know over a coach with whom their program has worked for 30 years. If Weis is to have any success at Kansas, he'll need to quickly gain the trust of the JUCO coaches.

Kansas' reputation as a basketball school also hurts its chances for football success, as other teams can negatively recruit against them with ease, citing the lack of commitment to football.

Another option, or rather requirement given the lack of in-state talent, is to have success in Texas. There are so many good players in Texas and the surrounding states. Texas and Oklahoma can only have 85 kids on scholarship at one time, meaning plenty can get out to other Big 12 programs. 

I don't know what, if any connections Weis has in Texas, but he'll need to make some quickly.

And there's also the issue of opposing coaches negatively recruiting against Weis himself. Weis appears to be in poor health. He is massively obese, looks to be in serious pain, uses a cane on the sidelines, and rests on an over-sized cooler when the defense is on the field. Recruiting is a dirty game, and opposing coaches will no doubt ask prospective recruits if they think Weis will even be fit enough to coach for an entire four or five-year career with the Jayhawks. 

Unless Weis can drastically upgrade the talent level in Lawrence, Kansas football will continue to play most of its conference games against teams with a superior player at almost every position. 

For more on Kansas recruiting, visit Rock Chalk Talk.

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