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KU football coach Les Miles talks job, recruiting: podcast

New Kansas coach Les Miles is ready to face high expectations in Year 1 … that he’s put upon himself.

On his latest episode of the “Les is More” podcast, Miles spoke about his lofty goals for the Jayhawks in 2019.

“I think it’s a challenge, but I think it’s something that we can do,” Miles said. “I think we will win in the first year.”

Miles likened the situation to his first season at Oklahoma State in 2001. In that year’s finale, the Cowboys defeated the second-ranked Oklahoma Sooners, 16-13.

“We would like to have that kind of success in our first year at Kansas,” Miles said.

To be fair, Oklahoma State still struggled some then. The Cowboys went 4-7 in 2001 before going 8-5 the next year.

During the Wednesday-recorded podcast, Miles also spoke about how he had started recruiting. His daughter, Smacker, said that he had been focused on that “pretty much around the clock.”

The two also talked about how Miles had gotten a new phone number, which meant that both his watch and phone were constantly ringing since his hiring last week. Miles said he was not yet allowed on the road recruiting, so he was mostly limited to only phone calls and texting with prospects.

Miles appeared to want to emphasize local recruiting in his conversation Wednesday.

“I think there’s talent right outside our door,” Miles said. “We have to get there, make our case, and say, ‘Hey, do you want to do something special? Do you want to play for your hometown? Do you want to play for that state you were raised in? Do you want to make it easy for your friends and family to see you play?’”

Miles also responded to a reader question about building his staff. He said that might take some time, as coaches with other programs are wholly focused with their current team’s gameplans and not about their future. Because of that, most of Miles’ contact with those coaches was simply to set up a time to have a later conversation.

Lawrence made a strong first impression for both Miles and Smacker. Miles referenced his radio show on the night he was hired, saying it was “a strong outing for the first one.”

He also was impressed by those fans who approached him individually.

“It’s a wonderful place,” Miles said of Lawrence. “People there are very genuine.”

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Jesse Newell

Jesse Newell covers University of Kansas athletics for The Star.

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