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Kansas Athletics Announces New Deal for Leipold

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LAWRENCE, Kan. (KUAthletics.com) –Following Kansas’ first bowl win since 2008 and back-to-back bowl appearances for just the second time in program history, Director of Athletics Travis Goff announced today that Kansas Football Head Coach Lance Leipold has signed an amended contract, reflective of his overhaul of the Jayhawks over his first three seasons.

“Today’s announcement is an indicator of two absolute truths surrounding Kansas Football – Lance Leipold is among the very best coaches and leaders in the country and the University of Kansas continues to be unwavering in its commitment to building a championship-caliber football program for the long haul. Since Lance and his staff arrived in Lawrence, our program has seen exponential growth in every facet both on and off the field. Winning nine games and earning a bowl trophy is an incredible accomplishment, but we are equally proud of the team for earning the highest grade point average in program history. Every aspect of our program is on an unprecedented positive trajectory, and we are eager to continue this prodigious build with Lance.”

TRAVIS GOFF, DIRECTOR OF ATHLETICS

Leipold is coming off his third season at the helm of the Jayhawks, having led Kansas to a 9-4 record in 2023, the program’s first nine-win season since 2007 and just its seventh nine-win season in program history. The historic season culminated in Kansas defeating UNLV in the Guaranteed Rate Bowl on Dec. 26, 2023, Kansas’ first bowl victory since 2008.

“We are incredibly proud of what our football program has accomplished over the first three seasons in Lawrence, and look forward to the continued challenge of bringing a consistent winner and championship home to the University of Kansas. With the alignment that exists between Chancellor Girod, Travis Goff and Kansas Football, it gives us great confidence in the future of the Jayhawk program, and we are thankful and humbled by the support of the University and Kansas Jayhawk fans everywhere.”

LANCE LEIPOLD, HEAD COACH

Since the start of the 2022 season, Kansas has been ranked in the Associated Press Top 25 poll six times, ranking as high as No. 19. Kansas was also ranked by the College Football Playoff Committee for the first time in program history in 2023 and made the playoff rankings three times during the 2023 season.

Under Leipold, Kansas has two wins against Top-25 opponents, including a 38-33 victory over No. 6 Oklahoma on Oct. 28, 2023, which was Kansas’ first win over a Top-10 conference opponent at home since 1984. In 2022, Kansas defeated No. 19 Oklahoma State to become bowl eligible, marking Kansas’ first win over a ranked opponent since 2010.

Kansas has seen unprecedented improvement under Leipold, as the Jayhawks finished the 2023 season ranked in the top-25 in total offense, passes intercepted, sacks allowed and more. Kansas also ranked in the top-10 in rushing offense, defensive touchdowns and 3rd down conversion rate.

Immediately following the 2023 season, construction began on the $448 million Gateway District and the reimagined David Booth Kansas Memorial Stadium, which Leipold and the Jayhawks will call home beginning in 2025. Upgrades to the team’s locker room and weight room have already taken place, while the team’s training hub, Anderson Family Football Complex, is currently under construction, undergoing major renovations and a significant expansion.

The momentum of Kansas Football under Leipold has transcended sport, serving as a catalyst for record-breaking University enrollment, heightened fan and alumni engagement and significant regional economic impact. Further, athletics fundraising has shattered records with $100 million raised in less than a year.

Kansas has seen dramatic improvement in attendance under Leipold, selling out seven of its last 12 home games. In 2023, combined attendance reached 321,219, which was the most in a season since 2008. David Booth Kansas Memorial Stadium has also hosted ESPN’s College Gameday and FOX’s Big Noon Kickoff during the past two seasons. The Jayhawks are just one of six schools to host both national pregame shows.

The on-field success has carried into recruiting as well, as Leipold and his staff assembled the program’s highest rated signing day class during the 2023 early signing period. The Jayhawks have also set program GPA records in each of the last three semesters. This past fall, Kansas set a fall program record, attaining a 3.16 GPA in the classroom, while going 9-4 on the field. Over the past two seasons, Kansas has had four individuals named Academic All-Americans. From 1964-2021, the program had just 10 such honorees.

Leipold is set to enter his fourth season with the Jayhawks and is a six-time national champion and fastest coach in college football history to reach 100 career wins. His 17 wins over his first three seasons at KU are the most by a Jayhawk coach since J.V. Sikes won 18 games from 1948-1950. Leipold’s career head coaching record stands at 163-60, while he has led his teams to five bowl appearances, where he holds a 3-2 record all-time.

Additional Leipold Notes:

  • Leipold became the fourth KU head coach to make two or more bowl appearances over his career, joining Mark Mangino (3-1), Glen Mason (2-0) and Don Fambrough (0-2).
  • Over the past two seasons, Leipold has led Kansas to a 9-4 record at home, which are more home wins than the previous six years combined, in which Kansas was 7-30 over that span.
  • Kansas holds a combined record of 15-11 over the past two seasons, which is the best two-year span in 15 years (2007-08).
  • Kansas made its second-consecutive bowl appearance in 2023, marking the second time in program history that the Jayhawks have been bowl bound in two-straight seasons (2007-08).
  • Kansas was ranked in the College Football Playoff Rankings for the first time in program history in 2023 and made the playoff rankings three times in 2023, appearing as high as No. 16.
  • Since 2022, Kansas has appeared in the AP College Football rankings six times, ranking as high as No. 19. Kansas’ appearance in 2022 was the first for the Jayhawks since 2009.
  • During the summer of 2023, Kansas football contributed a program-record 504 hours of community service around the Lawrence community.
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