The great communicator
For starters, let’s go back to what head coach Sean McVay had to say about Coen when he was hired on by the Kentucky Wildcats. He cited two things that are keys to the success of the Rams offense in 2022: He described Coen as an ‘excellent communicator’, and stated that he relied upon Coen heavily behind the scenes.
That type of endorsement went above and beyond the typical lip service that often accompanies a coach who migrates from the NFL to the NCAA. Behind the words, McVay was describing not just what Liam Coen offers as a coach, but also what skillsets were vital to Rams coaching staff to ensure progress and compatibility.
Perhaps even more importantly, Coen was thrown into the SEC, one of the most competitive NCAA conferences in existence, and elevated the team to a 10 wins 3 losses record, and a victory against the University of Iowa in the VRBO Citrus Bowl. Much of the team’s improvement came on offense, as the Wildcats jumped from 21.8 to 32.3 points per game in one season.
The Kentucky offense was more than simply injecting the LA Rams style of offense, featuring play-action passing, into a ground-centric offense. Kentucky’s passing game in 2020 was nearly on life support, gaining just 1,336 yards, seven touchdowns, and five interceptions in 11 games. Coen nearly tripled the passing output: 2,933 yards, 24 touchdowns, and 13 interceptions, while actually improving the performance of the running game too.
That front-row seat in the SEC, and in college football, is exactly the type of perspective that the LA Rams front office needs to complete their scouting analysis of college prospects. Coen coached, recruited, and planned against many of the very same players who the organization must vet for the 2022 NFL Draft. His take on these players will be crucial to ensure a clear understanding of the prospect as well as the potential fit in the LA Rams culture.