Kansas has hired Buffalo’s Lance Leipold as head coach, the school said on Friday.
According to the school, the Jayhawks and Leipold agreed on a six-year contract.
“It is an exciting and humiliating opportunity and this is a day I will never forget,” said Leipold in a statement. “We will build this program through player development, discipline and determination. The philosophies embedded in our programs along the way will be critical if we reverse this. This is a program that has a lot of young talent on the roster has and has The infrastructure is in place to be successful. The best days for this program are just around the corner and my family and I are excited to be a part of it. I am ready to get down to business and the To give Jayhawks all I have. “
Leipold, two-time Central American conference coach of the year, has spent the past six seasons with the Bulls. He was 37-33 at Buffalo with two division championships and three consecutive bowl appearances, 24-10 as of 2018.
“I can’t thank Lance enough for everything he’s done for our football program,” Buffalo sports director Mark Alnutt said in a statement. “His vision and leadership have helped strengthen the UB Football brand. We are grateful for what Lance has done here and wish him and his family the best as they embark on this new journey.”
The Kansas search earlier this week was limited to Leipold, Jeff Monken of Army, Skip Holtz of Louisiana Tech, and Mike Elko, the Texas A&M defensive coordinator, and the final decision fell on Leipold and Monken.
The 56-year-old Leipold went with six national championships of the Division III in eight seasons in Wisconsin-Whitewater to 109: 6, where he played quarterback from 1983 to 1986. As a six-time AFCA Division III National Coach of the Year, Leipold returns to a Power 5 program for the first time in three years as an assistant in Nebraska from 2001 to 2003.
The Wisconsin native will replace Les Miles, who was fired last month after an LSU investigation uncovered allegations of inappropriate behavior towards female students during his tenure as Tigers’ coach. Kansas also sacked sporting director Jeff Long, who hired Miles, and replaced him with assistant sporting director of the Northwest, Travis Goff.
“He’s a man of integrity, a young male developer, a programmer and a winner,” Goff said in a statement sent to Leipold. “His track record of sustained excellence is exactly what we were looking for in our next leader, and that is exactly what the University of Kansas and our fans deserve.”
Kansas has been between 18 and 90 years old since 2011 and last had a successful season under Mark Mangino in 2008. Leipold will be the team’s sixth head coach since that last winning campaign.
Wide-angle receiver trainer Emmett Jones acted as interim trainer for the Jayhawks and led the team through spring training, which ends with the spring game on Saturday.