LEXINGTON, Ky. (KT) – Rich Scangarello is just starting to implement his plan this spring and he said the Wildcats are spreading pretty quickly.
Kentucky’s freshman offensive coordinator was impressed with the team’s ability to transition from Liam Coen’s scheme to his playbook, which includes a fullback, or H-back, infield back. Judge Dingle, a converted defensive lineman, got the most reps at fullback.
“At the end of the day, the exciting part of college football isn’t a lot of people dealing with it,” Scangarello said Tuesday. and/or dispatch people with a guy who is versatile and capable of creating clashes in space.
During a practice open to members of the media on Tuesday at Nutter Fieldhouse, Scangarello was unhappy with the offense and said the practice was “a bit difficult.”
“We weren’t as sharp as we had been,” he said. “(The) defense did some good things. They put new things. We weren’t quite there with (our plans). … As long as we take care of the football, the other things that we can always fix schematically and all that other stuff. So that’s the biggest point today that I thought the ball was on the ground. A few times we threw spikes. These are things that cannot happen.
The offensive unit led by veteran quarterback Will Levis and running back Chris Rodriguez has struggled, but Scangarello credited Brad White’s defensive unit for providing a challenge so far this spring. He compared the pattern to what he witnessed while coaching quarterbacks for the San Francisco 49ers.
“I love his defense, so we talked about it, we talked about it a lot, actually, it reminds me a bit of the trend in the NFL right now, and we had a few discussions,” he said. . “Not everyone (who) understands it. Not everyone can teach it. It has a lot of complexities. It’s very detailed. It’s pro-driven and kinda (the same) as the NFL.
Scangarello has a job to do with the departure of Wan’Dale Robinson, who has declared himself for the NFL Draft after his only season with the Wildcats. DeMarcus Harris, Dekel Crowdus, Chris Lewis, Michael Drennan and Tayvion Robinson are among the players in the mix for undetermined starting positions.
The staff anchored by Scangarello also includes new offensive line coach Zach Yenser and the two newcomers “are kind of working with everyone and working with everyone right now.”
“Nobody has a starting spot right now,” Harris said. “Everyone aspires and wants to be noticed.”
Running backs will also see plenty of action in Scangarello’s offensive attack.
“I think that’s a really important part of any attack, and I think we’ve got the guys to do that,” he said. “Actually, today was a little off. We try to achieve some things, but we also try to manage (Rodriguez) and let the other guys see what they can do as well. But I think he has a real ability to catch the ball in the backfield. “
As the final week of spring training approaches, Scangarello is confident the team will continue to build on their successes.
“I felt like we made progress, but you can’t go back, and that’s the maturity of your leaders, the maturity of your group. And as coaches we have to do a great job and make sure we coach at a high level so they understand that and they can execute,” he said.
The annual Bleu-Blanc game will take place on April 9 at 1 p.m. at Kroger Field.
Keith Taylor is Kentucky Today’s sportswriter. Reach him at Keith.taylor@kentuckytodaycom and via Twitter at keithtaylor21.