Bush Hamdan shares excitement over running game at Kentucky

Barkley-Truaxby:Barkley Truax02/21/24


Bush Hamdan is tasked with leading a new Kentucky offense that features some of the top transfer portal talent from this year’s cycle at their respective positions. After his success at Boise State, fans are optimistic for a solid debut season for Hamdan as offensive coordinator.

Kentucky has earned its reputation as one of the most physical rushing teams in the SEC under head coach Mark Stoops. Hamdan’s philosophies align with the rushing results seen in Lexington over the past several seasons and made it clear that he is planning to continue that smash-mouth tradition in 2024.

“This program, I mean, playing [against] Kentucky has always — you’d better be ready for a physical, physical day,” Hamdan said during his introductory press conference. “I think it certainly starts with that run game, and I can’t I can’t get over that. There’s a stat for us at Boise where over the course of three or four years, when we rushed for 150 yards we were 34-2. And you guys know it too, if you can run the ball, then you’re gonna have a pretty good chance. It always starts with that.

“I’m certainly excited to get to work with these guys. It’s been mentioned, I think, in just about every year that I’ve been calling plays we’ve had a 1,000-yard rusher. The stats don’t lie. That’s going to be something extremely important to us and creating the explosives off of that.”

To Hamdan’s point, during his lone season coaching at his alma mater running back Ashton Jeanty became the Mountain West’s leading rusher with 1,351 yards. Not only that, but he utilized two quarterbacks throughout the season. Quarterbacks Taylen Green and Maddux Madsen combined for 3,098 yards and 20 touchdowns.

Boise State’s rushing approach saw the Broncos compile 560 rushing attempts for 3,008 total rushing yards with 34 touchdowns to show for it. Jeanty scored 14 of those, but three other players totaled over 330 yards on the year as well, including Green who scored nine touchdowns out of the backfield. 

Those numbers ranked Boise State No. 6 nationally in total rushing offense. They averaged 214.9 rushing yards per game under Hamdan’s guide.

Hamdan will look to continue that success at Kentucky with new running back Chip Trayanum, a transfer from Ohio State. In the passing game, Hamdan gets to work with Georgia transfer Brock Vandagriff and his top targets, Dane Key and Barion Brown who returning for their third season in Lexington.