When new QB coach Darin Hinshaw first met his presumed starting quarterback, Drew Barker, earlier this year, he told the redshirt sophomore something he needed to hear.
“Your brand stinks,” Hinshaw said.
After today’s practice, Hinshaw opened up to reporters about challenging Barker to mature into a player that can lead the Kentucky football team. By all accounts it has been a huge transformation in a short period of time as Barker has drawn a ton of praise from coaches and teammates for his on- and off-the-field performance and accountability.
Read about how that came to be in Hinshaw’s comments, via Jen Smith:
“I said, ‘Let’s see, when I came in and said the name Drew Barker, what does everybody say?’ And the things that came out of my mouth were not good. The things that came out of the AD’s mouth were not good. The things that came out of the equipment room was not good.
I said, ‘Your brand stinks. Let’s just call it how it is. So we have to change it.’ And the only way you’re gonna change it is not with your mouth, it’s gonna be with your actions and what you do on and off the field, and he’s done what he’s supposed to do to change his brand.
Now we got to do it on the football field in game situations. We can’t just do it in practice, we got to do it in the games. So we’re constantly talking about, ‘Put yourself in a game situation. Put yourself — you’re playing Southern Miss in this drill right now. You’re not playing against our defense, and you’ve got to go manage the game, manage the football, do everything you’re supposed to do as a quarterback.”
Since that talk with Hinshaw, Barker posted a 3.75 grade-point average in the spring and a 3.5 GPA this summer. On the field, he’s worked hard to improve his game and it has shown through the first week of camp.
We like this new Drew Barker brand so far.