Brohm sets the bar high

Louisville quarterback Brian Brohm sets the bar high for himself. And despite leading the country in passing efficiency and ranking forth in completion percentage, the 6-foot-4 sophomore still isn't satisfied with his play.

Louisville sophomore quarterback Brian Brohm sets the bar extremely high for himself, perhaps too much so at times.

After completing 80 percent of his passes for 303 yards and two touchdowns in a 46-22 victory over Cincinnati last Saturday, Brohm somehow managed to feel disappointed by what many quarterbacks would consider a career day.

"Someone told me Brian came off the field thinking he didn't play very well," Louisville coach Bobby Petrino said Monday. "I looked at this guy, and said, ‘are you kidding me? He was 21 out of 26 for three hundred something yards and two touchdowns. That's a pretty good performance. So we have to make sure (Brian) understands how well he is doing."

Brohm said he sets such lofty goals for himself that he often loses perspective at just how well he's playing.

"It's always hard to keep it in perspective," Brohm said. "I have such high expectations for myself that it's hard sometimes to meet them because I set such lofty goals. I always watch film and see what I could have done better, but that's what drives me to keep getting better and better."

By any measurement, Brohm's first season as the Cardinals starting quarterback has been superlative. In just his second season, he's already established himself among the nation's top signal callers, completing 150-216 passes for 2,102 yards and 14 touchdowns. Even more amazing, he's thrown just three interceptions – or one pick every 72 pass attempts.

A quick look at some of Brohm's accomplishments this season tells the tale:

  • Leads the country in passing efficiency (169.80);
  • Ranks fourth nationally in completion percentage (69.4)
  • Behind Brohm, the U of L offense ranks third nationally in scoring offense (42.9)
  • Has four 300 + yard passing games
  • Big East Offensive Player of the Week three times this season

    Like his team, expectations for Brohm – from fans and media - entering the season were off the charts. Petrino thinks Brohm hasn't received greater recognition and appreciation for his accomplishments this season because the expectations were so high.

    Brohm ranks as college football's
    passing efficiency leader.

    "Everyone in this city and state has very high expectations for him," Petrino said. "We kind of take him for granted a little bit, I think, because he's played extremely well. There's probably not another sophomore around that's played as well as he has – taking care of the ball and distributing it as well as he has. I guess everyone just expects that."

    Since the season's first game against Kentucky in which Petrino spoon-fed Brohm the offense, the 6-foot-4, 225-pound quarterback has shown tremendous growth and improvement on the field.

    "He's really come to understand coverage's and rotations in the secondary," Petrino said. "He knows his progressions a lot better and he's been getting the ball out a lot quicker. If you notice, not only the interceptions, but we haven't had the sacks lately. That means our timing is much better, and he's been quicker with his decision-making.

    "He's kind of settling into what we're doing," added Petrino. "Early in the year, we probably had too much in for him – too many things for him to do at the line of scrimmage. I think he understands exactly what we're asking him to do."

    Sophomore wide receiver Harry Douglas has also noticed a difference in Brohm as the season has progressed.

    "I see a big difference in Brian," Douglas said. "He's getting smarter every game and he's coming along good. He was confident to begin with, but he's a lot more confident (now), you can just tell a difference in (his) voice."

    Perhaps the front-runner for Big East Offensive Player of the Year honors, Brohm says he's still not satisfied with his on-field performance.

    "Every game I just want to go in knowing what to do every play and make all the right checks and reads, and get the ball to the right guy," he said.

    What Brohm really strives for is flawlessness.

    "I just want to execute the offense to perfection each game," he said.

    And after getting off to a shaky 0-2 Big East start, Brohm said the Cardinals are focused on finishing the season on a perfect note.

    "All we can do is try to win all the games we have left," Brohm said.

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