By LARRY VAUGHT
If new Kentucky offensive coordinator Neal Brown is right, it won’t take long for quarterbacks to learn his system.
“It’s really a simple system. The first three days of spring practice we’ll install the whole system. It’s a system that the quarterbacks will be able to learn in a two to three week period while I’m gone recruiting. They can watch some videos and really have a good idea of what we want to do when I get back,” said Brown Tuesday.,
Three days and have the whole system in? What a refreshing thought to hear a coach say it doesn’t take months and months to learn an offense. Remember how in recent years UK’s offense has been “limited” because coaches said they could not install the whole offense. With Brown, he says that will be no problem — and he’s had one of the nation’s more productive offenses at Texas Tech.
He played under Hal Mumme at Kentucky and coached under Tony Franklin at Troy. Brown knows the “Air Raid” offense — and is all for bringing the sirens back to Commonwealth Stadium he said if that helps produce touchdowns — and says long-time UK fans who watched Mumme’s teams will see familiar plays.
“The base plays that you’re going to see on Saturday afternoons, when coach Mumme was here, those base plays are the same. Those base plays are really the same that you’re seeing at West Virginia be highly successful. They’re the same plays we used at Texas Tech. Oklahoma State’s using those same plays. Oklahoma’s using those same plays,” Brown said. “Those same base plays really haven’t changed since 1997 when coach Mumme brought those to really big-time college football.
“Now what we’ve done is, is we’ve made a stronger – I guess we’ve made a more concerted effort to run the football is the best way to put that. We’re playing at a faster pace, and we dress those plays up with motions, with different formations. Those are the things that the fans are going to notice.”
Brown calls it a “good problem” to have three sophomore quarterbacks — Maxwell Smith, Jalen Whitlow and Patrick Towles.
“It’s a good situation. We’ve got three guys that can play quarterback in the Southeastern Conference. How we’re going to handle that is, it’s going to be an open competition. I met with those guys, I guess it was Monday of last week, and all three guys (are) good people, very interesting guys, excited about a fresh start,” Brown said. “And it’s going to be a fresh start, not only for them, but for all the guys on our whole football team. I’m only controlling the offense, but it’s a fresh start. The way we’re going to handle it, it’s going to be an open competition. All three guys will split the reps a third in spring practice, carry that competition through the summer into fall camp and see who the best man is.”
He doesn’t want to prejudge anyone, including his receivers.
“Really been focused more on the recruiting end than the current personnel. During this dead period in recruiting, I’ll probably start peeking at those guys (receivers),” he said. “I think you’ve got to be careful of not watching too much, because it’s a different system. You don’t know what the players, where they were at that point in their career and all those type of things, injuries. I’ll peek at them just to have an idea, but I’m not going to get carried away watching a whole lot of the last couple years.”