Scores

Final

McNeese State 24

(0-1, 0-1 away)

Kansas 42

(1-0, 1-0 home)

7:00 PM ET, September 3, 2011

Memorial Stadium, LAWRENCE, KS

1 2 3 4 T
MCNS 0 3 13 824
KU 7 14 7 1442

Top Performers

Passing: J. Webb (COLO) - 146 YDS, 3 TD

Rushing: J. Sims (KU) - 19 CAR, 104 YDS, 1 TD

Receiving: J. Shepherd (KU) - 3 REC, 107 YDS, 2 TD

Jordan Webb helps Kansas trounce McNeese State

Associated Press

LAWRENCE, Kan. -- Jordan Webb threw three touchdown passes and ran for another, and Kansas, flashing the improved speed coach Turner Gill had promised, beat McNeese State 42-24 Saturday night in a season opener delayed almost 25 minutes by rain.

JaCorey Shepherd caught three passes for 107 yards and two touchdowns. He went 56 yards for one score and then, after getting wide open on a fourth-and-3 play in the fourth quarter, hauled in a 48-yard pass for another.

Kansas also got touchdown runs from James Sims, who totaled 104 yards on 19 carries, and Tony Pierson.

The Jayhawks looked snappy and much faster than last year, when they struggled to a 3-9 finish in Gill's first season, beginning with a shocking 6-3 loss to Division II North Dakota State.

Webb, who started seven games in an injury-marred 2010 season, attempted only 10 passes, but completed seven for 146 yards.

Pierson, a true freshman, went 47 yards on his first carry to set up a touchdown and 13 yards into the end zone the second time he touched the ball. He had 73 yards on five carries.

Cody Stroud was 22 for 27 for 210 yards and a touchdown for the Cowboys. He alternated with Riley Dodge, who was 9 for 14 for 107 yards and another TD.

After getting stopped cold on their first possession, the Jayhawks went 84 yards in eight plays on their second, with Webb hitting Daymond Patterson on a 25-yard scoring pass following Sims' 30-yard scamper up the middle.

The Jayhawks took a 21-3 lead into halftime following Sims' 1-yard touchdown run and Pierson's 13-yard carry out of a wildcat formation.

The Cowboys scored on their first possession of the second half, rolling 76 yards in 12 plays. Stroud flipped a short pass to Champlain Babin, who got two excellent blocks while going into the end zone. Babin had five catches for 108 yards.

The Jayhawks answered with Shepherd's 56-yard catch-and-run. Shepherd and Kale Pick seemed to be running the same route, and both had their hands up. But Shepherd, a couple of steps behind Pick, was the one who pulled in the ball.

McNeese State's Dodge, on fourth-and-14, found a wide-open Wes Briscoe for a 32-yard scoring pass in the third quarter. Then back came the Jayhawks, with Sims getting a short touchdown run for a 35-16 lead early in the fourth.

Stroud connected with Babin on a 60-yard pass play, then got into the end zone two plays later. He hit Damion Dixon for a two-point conversion that made the score 35-24 with 8:32 to go before Webb hooked up with Shepherd on another long scoring pass.

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Team Stat Comparison

 
MCNS
KU
1st Downs2223
Total Yards420447
Passing325146
Rushing95301
Penalties9-604-35
3rd Down Conversions9-175-12
4th Down Conversions1-21-2
Turnovers00
Possession34:4725:13

Passing Leaders

McNeese StateC/ATTYDSAVGTDINT
Stroud22/272188.110
KansasC/ATTYDSAVGTDINT
Webb7/1014614.630

Rushing Leaders

McNeese StateCARYDSAVGTDLG
Dodge11454.1020
Murray5183.6018
KansasCARYDSAVGTDLG
Sims191045.5130
Pierson57314.6147

Receiving Leaders

McNeese StateRECYDSAVGTDLG
Babin510821.6160
Carey77310.4037
KansasRECYDSAVGTDLG
Shepherd310735.7256
Patterson33411.3125

Scoring Summary

FIRST QUARTERMCNSKU
TD05:30Daymond Patterson 25 Yd Pass From Jordan Webb (Alex Mueller Kick) 07
SECOND QUARTERMCNSKU
FG11:52Josh Lewis 26 Yd 37
TD08:00James Sims 1 Yd Run (Alex Mueller Kick) 314
TD01:51Tony Pierson 13 Yd Run (Alex Mueller Kick) 321
THIRD QUARTERMCNSKU
TD09:48Champlain Babin 14 Yd Pass From Cody Stroud (Josh Lewis Kick) 1021
TD08:02JaCorey Shepherd 56 Yd Pass From Jordan Webb (Alex Mueller Kick) 1028
TD04:24Wes Briscoe 32 Yd Pass From Riley Dodge (Pat Failed) 1628
FOURTH QUARTERMCNSKU
TD13:20Jordan Webb 8 Yd Run (Alex Mueller Kick) 1635
TD08:32Cody Stroud 1 Yd Run (Cody Stroud Pass To Damion Dixon For Two-Point Conversion) 2435
TD06:30JaCorey Shepherd 48 Yd Pass From Jordan Webb (Alex Mueller Kick) 2442