1986 Kansas Jayhawks football team represented the University of Kansas in the Big Eight Conference during the 1986 NCAA Division I-A football season. In their first season under head coach Bob Valesente, the Jayhawks compiled a 3–8 record (0–7 against conference opponents), tied for last place in the conference, and were outscored by opponents by a combined total of 327 to 112.  They played their home games at  Memorial Stadium in Lawrence, Kansas.
The team's statistical leaders included Mike Orth with 1,548 passing yards, Arnold Snell with 672 rushing yards, and Ronnie Caldwell with 423 receiving yards.
Phil Forte, Mike Orth, Paul Oswald, Wayne Ziegler, and John Randolph were the team captains. 
Date Opponent Site Result
September 13 North Carolina * L 0–20
September 20 Utah State * Memorial Stadium Lawrence, KS W 16–13
September 27 Indiana State * Memorial Stadium Lawrence, KS W 20–6
October 4 Southern Illinois * Memorial Stadium Lawrence, KS W 35–23
October 11 Iowa State Memorial Stadium Lawrence, KS L 10–13
October 18 at Kansas State L 12–29
October 25 at Oklahoma State L 6–24
November 1 No. 4 Oklahoma Memorial Stadium Lawrence, KS L 3–64
November 8 at Colorado L 10–17
November 15 No. 6 Nebraska Memorial Stadium Lawrence, KS ( rivalry) L 0–70
November 22 at Missouri L 0–48 *Non-conference game Rankings from AP Poll released prior to the game