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Kentucky has to find ways to make sure DeMarcus Sweat has the UK band playing

Kentucky's DeMarcus Sweat leaves the field after his team was defeated 32-31 by Western Kentucky in overtime of an NCAA college football game at Commonwealth Stadium in Lexington, Ky., Saturday, Sept. 15, 2012. (AP Photo/James Crisp)

Kentucky’s DeMarcus Sweat leaves the field after his team was defeated 32-31 by Western Kentucky in overtime of an NCAA college football game at Commonwealth Stadium in Lexington, Ky., Saturday, Sept. 15, 2012. (AP Photo/James Crisp)


After Kentucky coach Joker Phillips wisely said that UK needs to get the ball more to freshman receiver Demarcus Sweat, who has scoring catches in the last two games.

What does offensive coordinator Randy Sanders think about that mandate from the head coach?

“Well, older is nice but talented is better. We’re working hard with DeMarcus. We’re pushing him, trying to get him to learn what to do and how to do. DeMarcus has to do his part. Some days he’s much better at it than others. We need to see consistency out of him, because there’s no question he can make plays,” Sanders said. “We’ve talked a lot about erasers and guys that can make things happen; he has that ability.”

Now comes perhaps the best quote I’ve heard from Sanders in his time at Kentucky.

“Right now when he’s on the field, there’s a good chance somebody’s band is going to play. We’ve just got to make sure it’s ours and not the other team’s,” Sanders said.

Funny, but when Sweat has played, he’s not given the other team’s band reason to play. He’s a playmaker, a guy like a Craig Yeast, Derek Abney or Randall Cobb that can turn a short pass into a home run and is also not afraid to be the target for clutch plays.

“He’s good at catching and running after he catches it. He’s not real good at being where he’s supposed to be. So we’re working on getting him where he’s supposed to be,” Sanders said.

Not good at being where he’s supposed to be? The end zone at the end of regulation against Western Kentucky looked like a pretty good place for Sweat to be — and that’s where he was with the ball when Kentucky most needed it.

Besides, all freshmen struggle to some extent to learn the whole playbook, don’t they.

“They’re all different. Some guys come in and they learn pretty quick. It is normal for them to have to go through a progression of being where they’re supposed to be when they’re supposed to be and things like that,” Sanders said. “They can learn the playbook, but just the volume of defenses they see and how they have to react to that is what increases so much in college. But it is normal. He obviously has ability. We need to get him involved as much as we can. We need him to do his part.”

That’s because so far the part he’s been given, he’s been very good at doing.

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  1. love SEC F-Ball

    I agree with your points Larry. I can’t understand Sanders thinking.
    Are they trying to “Over-Coach”?
    Need to get Sweat on the field.

    If I remember correctly Randall Cobb ran the wrong route last year on one of his first Green Bay TD’s. Aaron Rodgers did not complain about it!

  2. love SEC F-Ball

    Am I the only one that thought that Sanders comments were odd?
    “Not being where he is supposed to be” ?? The end zone is O.K. with me.
    Play the kid!

    1. larryvaught

      With you on that loveSECF-ball

    2. Brock

      Receivers run timing routes that has the quarterback throwing the ball before the reciever turns right. If the receiver turns left instead, (by not knowing where he’s supposed to be) the ball has a high chance of being intercepted. I’m sure you’re not the only one questioning Sanders’ comments. Many people who know little about football would think they were odd, so don’t worry yourself about it.

      1. larryvaught

        I agree Brock, but from what I can tell that has not been a problem with Sweat. That’s why I am puzzled. He obviously was in the right spot for the TD catches. Believe he’s only had five balls thrown his way, 3 completions, one drop, one overthrow

  3. Tana

    Honestly, I had not thought that Coach Sanders’ comments were “odd,” for Sanders truely “tells it like it is” and doesn’t get too “high.” DeMarcus, a true freshmen, is evidently not running some of his routes correctly right now (but, yes, still scored one of his touchdowns not doing so, though!). I can only imagine how special he will be when he starts doing that better! Anyway, Sanders surely envisions the same and must, thus, push him every single day to learn those routes better and become the dependable playmaker this team needs.

    By the way, I read that DeMarcus is Jeremy Jarmon’s cousin. I imagine Jeremy is leading DeMarcus the right way, which is an added bonus. Further, oh, yes, I certainly join you guys in wanting to see DeMarcus playing more and touching that ball MUCH more — how exciting that youngster is to watch and how VERY productive he has been for his minutes of play! GO CATS!!!

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