Bush Hamdan says he likes coffee. After what Kentucky fans experienced from the offense in 2023, Hamdan will seem like a jolt of caffeine all on his own.

Kentucky’s new offensive coordinator met with reporters in Lexington for the first time on Thursday. He answered questions about why he decided to leave Boise State to take the job on Mark Stoops’ class, he answered questions about his recruiting philosophy, and he talked at length about what fans can expect to see from the new UK offense.

“It always starts with personnel,” Hamdan said. “Week 1 is analyzing the roster. We know players win games, (so we need to) get a good feel of what these guys can do and putting them in the best position.

“I think the second thing is variance in tempo. That’s been something, over the course of the years — we know there’s gonna be certain games where we’ve gotta play fast. We know there’s gonna be certain games where we’ve gotta play slower, control the clock. But it’s a pro-style foundation. There’s a lot of continuity there, but there’s such an emphasis on creating explosive plays. We’ve got to do that with creativity, we’ve got to do that with variance in formation and personnel, and that is the focus.”

Hamdan, who just turned 38 last Saturday, comes to Kentucky after spending a year as the offensive coordinator at Boise State. The year prior to his arrival, Boise ranked 55th in yards per play and 29th in yards per rushing attempt.

During the 2023 season, the Broncos averaged 6.6 yards per play in 14 games, bolstered by one of college football’s best rushing attacks and one of the sport’s most electric running backs. Led by Ashton Jeanty (1,916 all-purpose yards, 19 total touchdowns), Boise State ranked ninth nationally in rushing efficiency.

Asked if fans should expect the Boise offense or the Missouri offense, Hamdan stressed he wants to build a system the maximizes the talent he has around him. That doesn’t mean trying to force players into boxes.

Still, some key tenets will remain.

Hamdan says Kentucky will run no-huddle about 60% of the time. That’s what he views as the base. They’ll adjust to whatever the gameplan of the week dictates.

“I think we were probably in the top 40 last year in pace of play (at Boise State),” Hamdan said. “The reason variation of tempo is so important is because different games are gonna call for different styles. … The ability to get up there (and) play fast (and) play smart is critical.”

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So often, tempo is earned. To play fast, you have to be able to get started. That first first down provides the juice. Boise State averaged 22 first downs a game last season; Kentucky averaged 17 each of the last two seasons. Possession-and-10 (the first play of a drive) is important. Being able to generate explosives is important. Only nine FBS programs created more explosive runs than Boise State did last season.

A lot of that had to do with Jeanty’s ability and Hamdan’s flexibility. He’s still learning the UK roster, but early indications are that Kentucky has tight ends who can run and wideouts who look like NFL-caliber players.

Of course, any kind of tempo also depends on the quarterback. Is there comfort? Is there confidence? Kentucky added Georgia transfer and former 5-star recruit Brock Vandagriff to the team this offseason. There’s optimism about what he can be.

“You don’t take the job unless you feel pretty good about that quarterback room,” Hamdan said. “I’m excited to work with all of those guys. I know they’re eager, too. Brock and a lot of those guys have already been by.”

Boise State’s quarterback ran it six times a game last season. Missouri’s Brady Cook ran it 11 times a game in 2022 when Hamdan was coaching the Tigers’ quarterbacks.

“I really believe that quarterback’s gotta get you at least two first downs a game with his legs,” Hamdan said. “I think it can be a huge, huge advantage. … There’s always a fine line of not running him too much and taking hits there, but I really believe it’s got to be an integral part of your system.”