Friday at Boston College, senior quarterback Carter Stanley not only proved he could lead Kansas to a win, he also earned a new nickname and received notoriety from Kansas fans on Twitter.
Against the Eagles, Stanley completed 20 of his 27 passes for 238 yards, three touchdowns and one interception. On top of putting up solid numbers through the air, he attracted a lot of attention for his scrambling ability.
Normally when head-to-head with a defender, quarterbacks try to avoid contact by sliding or running out of bounds. Not Stanley. Instead, he welcomed the contact, once lowering the shoulder to fight for extra yards and again when jumping over a defender for a first down over Boston College defensive back Nolan Borgersen.
Stanley said the play was something he’d been dreaming of, but decided he was going to hurdle Borgersen a split-second before he executed the maneuver.
“I dreamed about it the night before and I saw on film all week that [Borgersen] usually likes to tackle low, so it’s something I took into account,” Stanley said during Monday's media availability. “I just kind of realized it a half a second before and did it.”
Sophomore running back Pooka Williams Jr. said plays like that from his quarterback energize him and his teammates.
“It boosts me,” Williams said. “When I see my quarterback running head up, I’m just like, ‘that’s my quarterback.’”
Kansas fans on Twitter took the play and ran with it.
Following the Jayhawks 48-24 win, a Twitter account dubbed @StarterStanley was created. The first tweet was the highlight of Stanley leaping with the caption: “I had a dream I jumped over a dude. And then I did it.”
Stanley said that he got a kick of out of the account.
“There was a parody account made that I thought was pretty funny — just some cool stuff the fans get to enjoy,” Stanley said.
Coming off a big win, Stanley said things like that are fun for everyone associated with the team.
“It’s enjoyable for the whole program: the players, the coaches, the fans, families of the players and coaches,” Stanley said. “It’s enjoyable stuff and I’m look forward to more.”
Twitter isn’t the only one having fun after Stanley’s breakout performance. Williams said he calls his quarterback “Super Stan,” which is also the display name of the Twitter account.
“He’s different — he puts his body on the line every play and he’s doing things other quarterbacks don’t do,” Williams said.
While the plays both resulted in first downs and lifted his teammates, Stanley said Kansas’ coaching staff reminded him to stay cautious about taking big hits.
“They kind of said be careful,” Stanley said. “It’s something I’m going to do for my team. I agree, I do have to be careful at times. Sometimes, just when I’m in that moment and I see other guys around me making plays, I feel like I got to be part of that.”
While the emotions are certainly high after Kansas’ huge road victory, Stanley said the team is going to “flush it” and prepare for the next opponent like they do every other week. Next Saturday, Kansas opens conference play by hosting West Virginia.
“Nothing really what we did on Friday night is really going to effect how we play Saturday,” Stanley said. “It’s all about preparation: film room, practice, every day. It’s all about getting ready for West Virginia this week. We got one team and got to do one thing, and that’s go 1-0.”
Kickoff against West Virginia is set for 3:30 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 21.