Pretty decent article today by John Marcase regarding UK’s former coach, Hal Mumme.
I agree with the author. People do tend to focus strictly on the bad things that happened during the Mumme era. Tony Franklin and Claude Bassett made sure of that. However, I’m old enough to remember the futility and frustration of the UK football program that settled in after the 1984 Hall of Fame Bowl, (which I attended). Mumme’s hiring marked a point in which Kentucky acknowledged that conventional approaches to football weren’t working and that UK was willing to try something different. For a few years there, it was very successful.
After Curry, master of the run-run-pass-punt offense, Mumme’s style was a breath of fresh air. It was an unbelievable feeling to actually look at the score board and see second and short. You felt like UK had the potential to beat anybody because the offense was so potent. It was a stark contrast to the Claiborne/Curry eras that relied on primarily on defense that eventually tired out in the 4th quarter.
I know Mumme is a hateable, arrogant figure. I know that he left our program in near shambles. I also know that the feeling around the program after Curry was one of utter hopelessness. I know that he came in and injected some swagger and attitude into a team that desperately needed it.
So, thank you, Hal Mumme. There are a few football fans in the Commonwealth that appreciate your efforts.