The move was necessitated by the loss of long-time UK OL coach John Schlarman to cancer. An alum of Kentucky, Schlarman is known as the builder of the big blue wall, the nickname of the offensive line that has been in the top 10 of college football for years now.
Jagodzinski has been at every level of football in his coaching career. Most notably the HC at Boston College in 2008, before heading to Tampa Bay to become the OC for the Buccaneers.
Jagodzinski has another tie to Kentucky. While coaching for the Renegades, he shared the coordinating job with Bobby Blizzard after former UK HC Hal Mumme got injured. Blizzard played TE for Mumme at Kentucky in the early 90s.
Stepping in for Schlarman is not gonna be easy. Despite the overall record, UK has had an outstanding offensive line over recent years. The DC Defenders‘ C Jon Toth was coached by Schlarman and has seen NFL reps.
It isn’t hard to see the impact Coach Schlarman had on the university. RB Benny Snell, WR Lynn Bowden, and G Logan Stenberg are all in the NFL because of the power of that offensive line.
Bowden ran for over 1,000 yards last year in that offense, and as I said, he’s a receiver. At the time though, he was playing QB for their injured starters. Everyone knew Bowden was gonna run more than he passed. But they couldn’t stop it.
Because of that offensive line, UK was able to get over 3500 yards on the ground between 4 players.
You have to go back to 2015 before you find a UK RB with less than 1000 yards. In 2016, Kentucky had 2 RBs cross the mark in Benny Snell, and Boom Williams.
That was Snell’s freshman season, and he would rack up more yards by his junior year that anyone in Kentucky’s history.
All because of Schlarman’s offensive line. Well, Benny was great, but that line made him a star.
I mention all of this just to show what Jagodzinski has in front of him. But he’s no slouch when it comes to coaching up the big guys up front. The Renegades had 2 top tier RBs in 2020.
Jags has big shoes to fill. But I believe he’ll do just fine at UK.
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