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Year Two A Biggie For UK’s Phillips

The more money coaches make, the quicker the pressure on them rises.  Every year a few more head coaches and assistants break the bank.  And every year a few more coaches feel their seats begin to warm.

Take Kentucky’s Joker Phillips, for example.  (I was tempted to pull a Henny Youngman right there.)  UK’s head football coach is entering just his second season as the Top Cat in 2011.  But still, Alex Scutchfield of the Kentucky-centric blog ASeaOfBlue.com writes that this season is of maximum importance for Phillips:


“Unlike his predecessor and mentor Rich Brooks, Phillips cannot weather the storm of a couple of losing seasons.  Expectations (that he helped create as an offensive coach and recruiter) are simply too high.  Yet Joker will start the season with offensive skills position and defensive linemen playing key roles who would have likely not seen the field at any point in the last five years at Kentucky.  A winning record will require a very good coaching job, much like the virtual masterpiece Brooks coaxed out in 2009.  The Cats will need to play 60 minutes of football each week, make up for weaknesses by winning turnover margin battles, and find two or three surprise contributors.

Phillips knows this, and if it keeps him up nights, well, it probably should.  It’s his time.”


Phillips is a Kentucky native and a graduate.  He played football at UK.  As offensive coordinator he oversaw some of the most productive seasons in UK history (not involving hotshot Tim Couch or rule-bending Hal Mumme).  Phillips is tried and true Big Blue.

But he’d better darn sure win in Year Two.

Ya think we all might be getting just a little too caught up in the “win big every year” thing?  Then again, as long as coaches keep pushing for more money, the more they’re asking for out of whack expectations.

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