If you didn't hear, Kansas football lost one of their Top 3 receivers Sunday. LaQuvionte Gonzalez was dismissed from the team for a violation of team rules, and will not be playing for the 2017 football season.
This is a huge loss for Kansas football. Quiv finished the 2016 season as Kansas football's number 2 receiver with an impressive 62 receptions for 729 yards and 3 reciving TD's. He made a splash on special teams as well with some good returns including a kick return TD against Ohio.
Gonzalez was known for his quickness in the open field which resulted in Coach David Beaty to refer to him as "Speedy" Gonzalez. This, along with his ability to catch landed him on the preseason watch list for the Paul Hornung Award, which is given to the NCAA's most versatile player.
His use in 2016 was hindered by the fact that our QB was pressured constantly and didn't allow him to use his speed to beat the secondary, forcing him to be used for screen passes and short cross routes for the most part, but anyone who watched this last season noticed his athleticism and was excited for this upcoming season.
Gonzalez was going to be in a deep WR group with Steven Sims Jr. and Alabama transfer Daylon Charlot. The deep threat that Charlot and Sims provided was going to allow for LaQuvionte to open up the middle and use his speed to beat defenders. Looks like David Beaty and the rest of the Kansas football program will need to make adjustment as we head into fall camp and the beginning of the 2017 campaign.
Don't forget, everything comes with a silver lining. Without Quiv on the field, it allows for the use of our other receivers such as Jeremiah Booker, Tyler Patrick, and the recently converted HB, Ryan Schadler. We will also get to see a lot more playing time from Jeremiah Booker and Chase Harrell, who can provide excellent outside blocking because of his size that Gonzales just couldn't provide.
Tuesday, Head Coach David Beaty spoke about the dismissal for the first time, yet he gave no specifics for why the receiver was let go. "We have standards that we expect our players to follow, and if they fail to do that at some point there will be (punishment), including and up to removal and dismissal from our program," Beaty said Tuesday in his press conference.
It's a tough blow for the team, but it's one that shouldn't hinder the team too much, especially since it came before the beginning of fall camp. Kansas has over a month to get used to this adjustment, with the season opener ccoming on September 2nd vs. SEMO.