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Beaty wrapping up first spring practices as new Kansas coach
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LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) — One thing that has become abundantly clear during David Beaty’s first spring in charge of the Kansas football program is that he likes to get things done at lightning pace.

He wants guys running between drills. He wants them moving quickly from one play to the next in practice. He wants them hustling in and out of the huddle at a sprint.

Perhaps it will all pay off with a quick turnaround.

The new-look Jayhawks are preparing for a public unveiling in their annual spring game on Saturday. And while there are plenty of questions when it comes to the roster — who will be the quarterback, or start at linebacker — the real focus will be on the coaches.

Beaty was hired to replace fired coach Charlie Weis last fall and tasked with restoring some of the luster to a once-proud program that played in the Orange Bowl less than a decade ago.

“There was a culture when we got here and that wasn’t necessarily wrong,” Beaty said. “The culture is what you want it to be, and our challenge is to get the culture we want installed and not sacrifice the long-term success of our program for things that could happen fast.”

Don’t confuse that with dawdling, though. There’s none of that going around.

“We have to get our culture installed as quickly as we can so we can all understand the procedure and culture we expect,” Beaty said. “Now we become better football players, managers of games, and can focus more on our trade than how we do things.”

Beaty, who had been the wide receivers coach at Texas A&M, know what it takes to win at Kansas. He was part of Mark Mangino’s staff during their most recent run at glory.

He also has a keen sense of just how far the program has fallen, though. Turner Gill managed just five wins in two seasons before he was fired, and Weis won four games his first two seasons before he was fired early last year. Clint Bowen helped lead Kansas to a 3-9 finish, and earned a job as the defensive coordinator on Beaty’s staff.

“Change is always exciting,” said linebacker Jake Love, who is playing for his third head coach. “You can either get better or worse from it, and I think we have a lot of guys here that want to win and do whatever it takes.”

That includes two quarterbacks fighting for the starting job.

Montell Cozart is the more athletic, option-style quarterback who seems to fit Beaty’s wide-open offense. Michael Cummings is the veteran with more success at the Division I level.

Then there’s the defense, where stalwarts such as Ben Heeney have graduated. The Jayhawks have been breaking in newcomers this spring, and it might be deep in fall camp before Beaty and his staff begin to settle on a starting group.

“What he wants to get accomplished is that he wants to win now,” Cummings said. “This season is about the seniors. He wants us to have a great year for our senior season. I have one season left, so I want to win now, too. I want to help him get it off the ground as well.”

Win now? Sounds like someone who is in a hurry to get things done.

Of course, all of those speed demands have caught up to the Jayhawks this spring — on the field, at least. Players quickly realized that a much different pace was expected of them.

“Very pleased with how they’ve handled the game mentally. Physically is another story,” wide receivers coach Klint Kubiak said. “Once you put pads on, you start running 90 plays in practice, it’s a lot different. They found out the hard way.”

They found out about Beaty’s way. Or rather, Beaty’s speed.

“Effort is a minimum expectation,” he said. “We tell them we’re not going to spend a lot of time on effort because we expect that every day. That’s something that when you look across the world, that applies. It’s the guys that produce that are winners and we’re trying to find the production guys. That’s what we’re working on.”