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By Eric Esteban Independent Florida Alligator
By Ryan Colaianni University Daily Kansan
Lawrence, KS (U-WIRE) -- Although Kansas football coach Mark Mangino has not named a starter for this Saturday's game against Florida Atlantic, all signs are pointing to junior Adam Barmann.
Barmann started the first eight games last season, before suffering an apparent shoulder injury against Iowa State, ending his season. Barmann has since worked with the first team throughout spring practices and training camp.
"Adam Barmann has picked up some ground coming out of the summer program. He's probably the most prepared of our veteran quarterbacks," Mangino said. "He still has to continue to improve to win the job."
At the team's annual media day on Aug. 11, Barmann was asked if the starting quarterback job was his. He confidently answered "yeah."
He passed for 1,427 yards with 12 touchdowns over nine interceptions.
Pushing Barmann is senior Brian Luke.
Luke led the team to victory over Missouri last season, yet was listed behind Barmann and senior Jason Swanson on the depth chart when spring practices ended in April.
Since then, Luke went to Mangino and told him he wanted to be the starting quarterback.
"I made it clear that I do not want to be the back-up, that I want to be the starter," Luke said. "But should I be the back-up I will do that with 100 percent pride."
Mangino appreciated Luke talking to him in his office, rather than hearing it from another coach, Luke said.
"I am as confident as I have ever been. I know the offense better than I ever have before," Luke said. "I am definitely looking forward to this season."
Luke saw action in three games last year and his pass-efficiency rating was the highest of any of the team's quarterbacks. He passed for 467 yards and three touchdowns.
Luke also nearly led Kansas to a victory over Texas, the week before the Missouri contest.
"Brian Luke is a very good player who has a great command of the offense," Barmann said. "We have a lot of very good players at the quarterback position and it will make all of us better."
Freshman quarterback Kerry Meier is also still in the mix for the job, Mangino said.
"The young guy, Kerry Meier, each and every day he learns more and more about our offense," Mangino said. "You can see he's an awfully talented guy."
Mangino hasn't said whether Meier wouldn't receive a redshirt this season.
Senior quarterback Jason Swanson, who threw the go-ahead touchdown against Kansas State last season, apparently is not in the race for the starting job.
"Swanson's been slowed down. He doesn't take many repetitions and has lost a lot of ground consequently," Mangino said. "He's got a long way to go to get himself back in the race."
Whoever wins the quarterback job will lead an offense that struggled at times last season moving the ball downfield as it averaged just over 300 yards of total offense per game.
Barmann said that going against one of the Big 12 Conference's top defenses in practice has helped the quarterbacks' progress this offseason.
"Those guys fly around and they have playmakers. To go against them every day is a tremendous help to our offense," Barmann said.
(C) 2004 University Daily Kansan via U-WIRE
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