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Neal Brown expects to see “much better Jason Hatcher player, Jason Hatcher person”

Jason Hatcher photo courtesy UK Athletics.

Jason Hatcher photo courtesy UK Athletics.

Defensive end Jason Hatcher was one of the marquee recruits in Mark Stoops’ first recruiting class at Kentucky last year. He had a solid freshman season with 19 tackles and two assists, but earlier this summer he was charged with marijuana possession.

That charge was dismissed in Jefferson District Court after the sophomore from Trinity High School completed a marijuana education course.

“He had a run-in that got cleared. A lot of things get made out when a kid gets in trouble and rightly so, because they’re high profile. He got cleared, and I don’t know if that gets enough publicity,” UK offensive coordinator Neal Brown said during an appearance at the Louisville Quarterback Club.

Brown said that Hatcher has “matured and has grown up a lot” at UK.

“I feel like he’s grown up a lot academically. He had over a 3.0 last semester. He had a really good spring practice. Most important, he had a great off-season program. That’s what he really needed was that off-season program,” Brown said.

“He’s playing behind the best player on our football team, Alvin Dupree. Not only is Dupree our best player but he’s also the best leader on our team. Just going to work today has made Jason Hatcher better. I think you’ll see a much better Jason Hatcher player, Jason Hatcher person this year.”

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6 comments

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  1. Larry Pup

    I hope Hatcher has learned his lesson. He is a great athlete, with a bright future, why throw it away with BS like this last episode. It is good to see him cleared, so I’m willing to forget, and move on, time will tell the true story about this young man.

  2. David

    “He’s playing behind the best player on our football team, Alvin Dupree. Not only is Dupree our best player but he’s also the best leader on our team. Just going to work today has made Jason Hatcher better. I think you’ll see a much better Jason Hatcher player, Jason Hatcher person this year.”

    Well then play him at inside linebacker and don’t waste him waiting for Alvin Dupree to graduate. Put your best 11 out there on defense so other teams can go 3 and out, that way our offense can be on the field most of the game for a change. Dang I should have a job on the coaching staff so we can get 7 wins this year. Go Cats make this your year a bowl year.

    1. Edward

      David, what are you talking about? Jason lettered last year, he played up and down all over the line. He will be a very significant factor on our “D”. Go Big Blue!

      1. Andy

        David,

        Jason played with a broken arm as well mid season and played well for a freshman. I think Coach Stoops knows more than we all do about his defensive ends.

  3. Edward

    Jason, you and Matt rip the Gator OL apart and then smash their QB into the Swamp!
    Go Big Blue!!!

    1. David

      Edward and Andy, what I am saying but maybe not convincing you two is that, middle linebacker could be our weak link this year because of graduating Avery Williamson.

      Here are Coach Stoops words. “Avery is tough to replace,” Stoops said. “(Replacing him) is by committee right now. We’ve got to work through that. We don’t have anybody that is ready to jump in.”

      I am giving an opinion that on what coach has said in an article. I think it would be better served for Kentucky to play a guy like Jason at inside linebacker this year and this year alone to fill the gap left by Avery moving on to the NFL. Now if Jason might be able to be the best fix for this year. I know without any reminder that this is not Coach Stoops first rodeo. I am throwing out an idea for a huge question mark.

      The defense used multiple formations last season. At times, defensive ends like Bud Dupree and Jason Hatcher would slide back and play linebacker in a 3-4 front. UK also went to a nickel formation with regularity in 2013, with sophomore cornerback Blake McClain holding down the starting nickel spot for the final 11 games of last season.

      I think IMO, Hatcher would help the team out filling a void, more than playing backup. Play your best 11 at all time. Again I know coach Stoops will do what is best.

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