The majority of the Kansas football coaching staff, hired by new head coach David Beaty, came together for an informal media session on Wednesday.
Following are the new coaches’ names, their positions, mini-bios and, if applicable, memorable quote from the afternoon.
Je’Nay Jackson, Director of Football Strength and Conditioning
Jackson comes to Kansas following four years as the Strength and Conditioning Coach for men’s basketball team at Indiana from 2010-14. He has coached at Kansas before, as the strength and conditioning assistant from 2005-06 and as the cornerbacks coach from 2007-09.
“We’re gonna run. We’re gonna be in great shape.” —Je’Ney Jackson
Gene Wier, Director of High School Relations
Wier was the head football coach at nearby Olathe North. Under his direction, Olathe North won six state championships in a seven-season span. He also has ties to the Dallas-Fort Worth area, where he coached for nine years.
Rob Likens, Offensive Coordinator
Likens coached at Cal for the past two seasons. In 2013 he was the assistant head coach and coached outside receivers. In 2014, he retained his previous positions and was also the passing coordinator. He has coached at Louisiana Tech (assistant head coach and wide receivers), Central Connecticut State (offensive coordinator and quarterbacks), Southeast Missouri State (offensive coordinator, quarterbacks and wide receivers), Temple (wide receivers) and North Alabama (wide receivers and running backs.)
“I understand the challenge that it’s going to be. We have to get the best out of our kids.” —Rob Likens
Zach Yenser, Run Game Coordinator and Offensive Line
Yenser coached at Cal and Louisiana Tech under Likens. During the 2013-14 seasons he was the offensive line coach for Cal and in 2012 he was the assistant offensive line coach at Louisiana Tech.
“I don’t care if you’re the best offensive lineman out there, I want you to be tough, I want you to love football.” —Zach Yenser
Klint Kubiak, Wide Receivers
Kubiak is the youngest coach on Kansas’ staff and was the assistant wide receivers coach and also served as quality control for the Minnesota Vikings during 2013-14. He worked alongside Beaty for a short amount of time at Texas A&M.
Gary Hyman, Tight Ends/Special Teams Coordinator
Hyman has been on the coaching scene since 2001. He coached at Delta College from 2001-08, coaching the wide receivers, running backs and quarterbacks. Since his inaugural coaching stint, he has coached at USC, UTEP, South Dakota School of Mines and Texas A&M.
Kevin Kane, Linebackers
Kane is a native son of the Kansas football program. He played linebacker for Kansas from 2002-05. After his playing career he coached at Kansas as a graduate assistant, helping out on the defensive side of the ball. Most recently, Kane coached at Northern Illinois from 2011-14, coaching a multitude of positions (tight ends/fullbacks, linebackers and special teams.)
Calvin Thibodeaux, Defensive Line
Thibodeaux knows Big 12 football. He played for Oklahoma from 2002-06. This will be his first time back to the Big 12 since his playing days. His coaching career started in 2008, where he was a graduate assistant for Houston. His most recent venture was from 2012-14, when he coached defensive tackles for Tulsa.
“As a player, I played against KU, so I’m very familiar with the program. I followed them when they had success, won the Orange Bowl.” —Calvin Thibodeaux
At the time of the media session, Beaty had not yet released the final names of the coaching staff. The news broke later on in the afternoon that Kenny Perry, former TCU cornerbacks coach, will be coaching the defensive backs and working with Clint Bowen as co-defensive coordinator.