On Sunday afternoon, third-year Kansas football coach David Beaty dismissed senior wide receiver LaQuvionte Gonzalez just one day before the team opened fall camp. On Tuesday, Beaty addressed why the Jayhawks’ second-leading receiver from 2016 is no longer on the team.
“We have standards that we expect our players to follow, and if they fail to do that, at some point, there will be including and up to removal or dismissal from the program,” Beaty said following the team’s first fall camp practice. “It does not mean you’re a bad person, it just means you can’t play here.
“We all have standards that we are going to uphold and we have to meet those as a team, and we have to be able to do that consistently over time.”
Gonzalez, who played his first two seasons at Texas A&M, sat out the 2015 season after transferring to Kansas in April 2015. In 2016, he caught 62 passes for 729 yards and three touchdowns as the Jayhawks’ No. 2 receiver. In all three categories, he trailed only junior Steven Sims Jr.
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Entering the 2017 season, Sims and Gonzalez figured to lead a deep wide receiver corps for Kansas. Gonzalez also averaged 21.5 yards per kick return with one touchdown in 2016.
“You guys know how much I care and love for Quiv, but I love this team just as much as I love him if not more,” Beaty said. “In the long run, the decision for him to part ways with us will be the best decision for both us and him.
“It will be something that serves him well as he moves forward in life and it will serve us well as a team. This was tough love.”
Gonzalez has one year of eligibility left.
“We wish him nothing but the best and we thank him for all that he did,” Beaty said. “He is not a bad person and not a bad kid. Anybody that gets him is going to be getting a special kid.
“I hope that he will move forward and be better for it as he moves on in his career.”
Kansas’ wide receiver depth is still considered a strength of the team, but outside of Sims, the Jayhawks’ returning pass catchers (including running backs and tight ends) combined for just six touchdowns on 144 receptions.
The Jayhawks finished second to last in the Big 12 in receiving touchdowns, total receiving yards and receiving yards per game in 2016. Even so, new offensive coordinator Doug Meacham still loves the depth of the group.
“I think we are good there,” Meacham said. “We have not hit or done anything yet, but they are instinctive and have some natural ball skills and that’s really good in this offense. They had a great summer.”
One of the new guys who figures to step up is Daylon Charlot, who transferred to Kansas from Alabama following the 2015 season.
“He is good, and he is so strong-handed and can make the tough catches in the crowd,” Meacham said. “He will body you up and he’s physical. … I like him, he is doing a good job.”
Despite it being the first practice, Beaty echoed Meacham’s thoughts on Charlot.
“It’s hard to see anything until you see him (Charlot) in a game, but the thing I was most impressed with was when the lights came on in the spring game, he just made play after play after play,” Beaty said. “That’s what has me really excited about him. …
“That guy is naturally talented. There is no doubt why he was recruited by so many people, and he has a bright career ahead of him.”