LAWRENCE — It's too early — after just four spring practices — to declare any leaders in the Kansas football quarterback competition.
KU coach David Beaty has seen enough from juco transfer Miles Kendrick, though, to believe that he'll have a positive impact whether he starts or not.
"Miles is an extremely committed guy. His work ethic is one of the better ones I've seen," Beaty said. "He's a guy that people know in our program that when those doors are open, he's going to be here."
Kendrick, a transfer from College of San Mateo (Calif.), is one of three main candidates for KU's starting job along with returners Peyton Bender and Carter Stanley.
His story is an interesting one. At 5 foot 10, Kendrick has continued to play quarterback even though there are few examples of players his size at the Division I level.
"You just have to learn to embrace it: Embrace it for what it is," Kendrick said earlier this spring. "It's driven me my whole career. It's made me go after this quarterback position a little harder."
He's also found inspiration from one player in particular: Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson, who is 5-11.
"He always talks about positive reinforcement. That's what I like to do. I like to be positive," Kendrick said. "I don't want to break down my teammates. I want to always see the bright side of things."
Kendrick's personality has earned him respect thus far.
KU receiver Steven Sims says he's enjoyed sitting next to Kendrick during team meetings each day. The two also will jokingly talk smack to cornerback Julian Chandler, who sits next to them.
"He has a great arm, strong arm," Sims said of Kendrick. "I feel like his work ethic is going to overcome the height.
"We'll see. I'm excited."
Whichever player wins the KU starting quarterback job will do so with more direct feedback from offensive coordinator Doug Meacham.
Beaty announced Thursday that Meacham, who coached the team's receivers last season, would be the new quarterbacks coach. Garrett Riley, who held that title last year, will now oversee KU's fullbacks and tight ends.
"We're always looking to make sure that we've got the best combination," Beaty said. "The good news about that for us is that we've got great, great coaches that can do it."
Meacham was previously quarterbacks coach at Houston in 2013.
Alabama transfer leaving KU's roster
Offensive lineman Charles Baldwin, who came to KU in 2016 from Alabama, plans on completing his KU degree before seeking a transfer, Beaty told reporters Thursday.
The 6-5, 305-pound Baldwin did not appear in any games for the Jayhawks.
"He's actually done a terrific job of managing his side of (the academics). We wish him well," Beaty said. "Looks like he's going to be on track to graduate, and he can get that done and he can get to the place where he needs to.