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Neal Brown: “We didn’t have an effort issue … we need playmakers”


Kentucky offensive coordinator Neal Brown knows UK fans are frustrated with the team’s lack of productivity this year. Kentucky averaged 20.5 points per game — three more than last year — and 341 yards per game — or about 25 more per game than last year.

But Brown, and UK fans, envisioned a lot more this year, and in the future.

“I think we were patchwork at times. I think we were patchwork. I think we were trying to cover up some things,” Brown said after Saturday’s loss to Tennessee to end a 2-10 season. “The offense we ran week to week is not exactly what I envision us being.

“I did think this – and I’ll say this about the kids we have right now: the results weren’t what we wanted but our kids did play hard. We didn’t have an effort issue. We didn’t have an effort issue at all this year. We’re just – we’re real thin at offensive line. We’re real thin and those guys are banged up and it showed – showed big tonight.

“And then we need playmakers. We need more guys that can make plays in space.”

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  1. Anonymous

    Agree! Now lets get some players.

  2. Stephen

    I agree completely! Brown and Stoops did the best they could with what they were given. This program needs strength, size, depth and maturity…that takes vision, effort and time. The first two are there with this staff, the third is up to the fans and the administration. I believe the fans are, predominantly, intelligent enough to know the pieces are in place to put a competitive product on the field in the very near future. As for those blasting Stoops and Brown as being inept and “the wrong hires” for this program…I think it’s best to simply consider the source.
    I’m a season ticket (multiple) holder, and not only do I intend to renew my tickets… I plan to upgrade! GO CATS!!!

  3. RJ

    Just got home from Lexington (long drive). I’ve been reading some of the posts since last night. One thing is certain, we could have had Vince Lombardi coaching this crew that was left over from Joker Phillips and the results would have been pretty much the same. Brown is right, we didn’t have the play makers. My worry is, will we ever?

    I’ll be back next year with the same seats I have now, health permitting.

    1. larryvaught

      Keep believing RJ. I am. If Stoops and this staff can’t do it, not sure any staff can at UK

  4. Andy

    We do need playmakers at both QB and the Oline position. We need some mean nasty guys up front. Stoops had the discipine to red shirt some players on the O line from the 2013 classe and with a few more additions and the experience this Oline has gained this season with such a tough stretch should serve them well.

    Brown and Stoops will hopefully have a clear winner at QB this time. Assuming Barker redshirts, I do not see why Philips or Towles cannot win the starting job. It seems the coaches speak highly of Philips and he maybe a diamond in the rough? Either way I am ready for the new crop of talent to be in and start competing.

  5. Georgia Blue

    I just hope this team correct everything over the winter , Spring and Summer before next season. I hope Neal don’t experiment with plays on certain downs and just call plays to what the defense is giving him. Coach Brown you have some playmakers on your team . It just you as a Coach get paid the money to find out how to get the ball to them in space. It is your job to work on cutting down the mistakes. Yes for 12 games we continue to make the same mistakes and missed assignment that cause us some important drives. What are you going to do to correct this in the offseason. Now getting back to playmakers, it is your job to create plays for your playmakers. I saw some plays that work for you but you never went back to them. I don’t like criticizing our coaches, but you have to look into the mirror and ask yourself the question what could I have done better for this offense and you would see that your play calling wasn’t up to par. It was like you froze up in some game, because it was like you were calling plays to the opposing team strength instead of the Cats Strength . Coach Brown you have a lot young talent on OFFENSE and it is up to you to find out work plays work and what plays don’t and play to your team strength. Help is on the way but can you Coach them up in the SEC. Next year you will be loaded on Offense at the skilled position. You just need to work on their weakness this spring like teach the WR how to block on the edge. Have them work on their hands and eye coordination

    1. larryvaught

      Good points Georgia Blue. Sure Neal has second guessed himself a lot, too. He’s hard on himself

  6. Mike

    Georgia Blue….your comments were right on target. Brown did not earn his money this year and was very vanilla most of the year. We desperately needed more misdirects, play action, reverses, and pump fakes etc. I also don’t agree with him that their were not effort problems this year. He also has to take a ton of credit for totally mismanaging the qb situation this year. The young guns apparently were not given a fair opportunity to show what they had. It is difficult to see how either one of them could have done worse.

  7. cats79

    I gotta agree with RJ,but we got a couple post that they think they can do the job better.I’m so sick and tired of the whiny babies that has no clue what there talking about.

    1. RJ

      cats79, yeah there are one or two posters on here that would be lost on an actual football field but for the most part I think you are mistaking the what you call lack of football knowledge with frustration.

      Remember, these coaches came in with a lot of hype. They themselves caused a lot of it by making ill advised statements that seemed to promise a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. Well, some people thought the rainbow was here and it is not.
      This is a natural mistake made by most newly minted head coaches and then they learn to keep their mouths shut where the public is concerned. If I had a criticism for the coaching staff, it is that they violated the cardinal rule about public speaking – think twice before you speak.

  8. Stephen

    Cats79….I’m with you….I’ve read comments from these ‘experts’ all season and I must say it has gotten quite ridiculous. But, as I said earlier….time to consider the source.

  9. Larry Pup

    Peace BBN. There is always next year. Just think how Alabama fans feel today. Better days are ahead for the Blue and White grid iron boys. Stoops will get er done! besides it is not life or death, just a mere game. Life goes on. We will be winners some day.

    1. RJ

      I would not want to be the special teams coach at AL and be even in the same state as Nick Saben.

  10. JCC

    They will come. They will be there. They are some that are already here, they just need to get experience. This team is on the upswing I can promise you that. GO BIG BLUE!

  11. Gene T.

    This coaching staff really earned their money this year after what Joker left them. I believe in this staff. If this staff doesn’t get it done, then I am done as a season ticket holder. I have had season tickets for 20 years, and been going to games a lot longer. I will be in my seats next year pulling for the team and Coaches. I like our future! GO CATS!

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