In a move that was welcomed by fans on social media, embattled offensive coordinator Kevin Brown has been let go by the UTSA administration. First reported by BirdsUp.com, the change comes after UTSA averaged 22.6 points per game, ranking 104th in the nation.
While Brown was heavily and fairly criticized for his in-game play calling, it was likely low on the list of reasons for his termination as offensive coordinator. By both official accounts and hearsay, Brown was not admired nor respected by many of his players which likely lead to UTSA's terrible turnover rate with quarterbacks. Through five full seasons of football the Roadrunners have only graduated two quarterbacks, neither of which were four year players.
Play calling matters, sure, but offensive identity is infinitely more important. Some schools establish an identity by throwing the ball 60 times per game. Others impose their will be wearing you down through four quarters with a power rushing game. No matter which direction a team takes, they need to develop a strength and perfect it.
After three seasons of Kevin Brown's offense I still couldn't tell you what the program's offensive identity was. Some days they would run option relentlessly. Other games the quarterbacks would throw like an air raid team. It paid off at times (UTSA's win over UNT in 2013 comes to mind) but ultimately it's no way to run a successful, sustainable offense as it inhibits what I call "system recruiting".
Since UTSA never established a system of self-identification on offense it ended up with a stable of quarterbacks that varied wildly. Outside of Eric Soza and Blake Bogenschutz who aligned as pass-first dual threat quarterbacks, Brown recruited a pro-style quarterback (Tucker Carter), a wildly inaccurate running quarterback (Austin Robinson), and a Big Ten transfer that lost his back up position to an unrecruited walk on from Goliad, Texas.
The good news for UTSA fans is that Inside Roadrunner Sports of the Scout network is reporting that UTSA is willing to make a huge step forward in pay with this hire, potentially doubling Brown's salary of $133,000. A salary above $250,000 would make UTSA a very competitive option, opening the door for hires that would otherwise be out of reach. Such a large increase in available pay also implies that UTSA may be looking to use this hire as a succession plan for Coker who obviously only has a few more years of coaching left in him.
I'll entertain you guys with some potential names to look for after keeping my ear to the ground for a while.