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Booger McFarland: “(Matt) Elam is (as) lazy as I’ve ever seen.”


(Courtesy Allen Kee/ESPN Images)

Back in July, SEC Network’s Greg McElroy made headlines at SEC Media Days when he called out Kentucky defensive tackle Matt Elam for being “lazy” and “underachieving.”

“This was an embarrassing effort last year, particularly the former 5-star, Matt Elam, who’s lazy and as underachieving a player as I’ve seen in this league in a long time,” McElroy said.

When asked about the comments, Elam took the high road by saying he’s going to take the criticism and do something about it.

“I’m not just going to sit there and cry about it,” Elam said. “I’m going to have to do something about it and the only way you can do something about it is just change it.”

Yesterday, McElroy’s former colleague and current ESPN analyst Booger McFarland decided it was necessary to slam Elam once again.

McFarland has never shied away from calling players and teams out, so this is nothing out of the ordinary. In fact, he has destroyed the UofL program as of late for allowing Bobby Petrino to come back as head coach, along with saying the team possesses no talent with the exception of Lamar Jackson.

That being said, his analysis on Elam was “lazy” and unoriginal. Not only did he just blatantly recycle what McElroy had to say about Elam, it shows he didn’t actually do his homework. The senior defensive tackle had a career game against Southern Miss, racking up four tackles (one TFL) and clogging the middle, giving future NFL back Ito Smith absolutely nothing to work with.

He wasn’t a world beater in game two against EKU, but he certainly wasn’t a liability on the line. His performance wasn’t a complete (negative) turnaround from the season opener to spark any immediate concerns. Elam was just mediocre like several other Wildcats on Saturday.

It’s low-hanging fruit at the expense of a college kid.

As far as his other comments, I’m not sure anyone agreed with the decision to pull Stephen Johnson for Drew Barker midway through the first quarter. But again, it was only two drives, and it was designed ahead of time. Both players knew it was going to happen, as it was just to get Barker’s feet wet against a lesser opponent in case anything were to happen to Johnson later in the year.

Barker got some of the rust off, and Johnson returned and won the game. Who cares.

For him to say there’s not much to like about UK’s victory on Saturday is just ignorant. Johnson solidified himself as a legitimate No. 1 option at quarterback and silenced all naysayers. The receivers didn’t have any drops on 16 receptions, a massive improvement from years past. Benny Snell got back to his dominant ways and back above the 100-yard mark. Etc.

After a slow start, Kentucky ended the game extremely well and provided plenty of reasons for optimism going forward.

It’s like one of the ESPN producers gave him a Spark Notes version of a five-minute clip they saw from the game, and McFarland ran with it as gospel.

Geez.

Article written by Jack Pilgrim

Follow me on Twitter at @JackPilgrimKSR

13 responses to “Booger McFarland: “(Matt) Elam is (as) lazy as I’ve ever seen.””

  1. TBW3011

    There wasn’t much to like about Saturday’s game. A lot of dizzy people from all the spin being put on the first 2 games. We either get much better quick or get embarrassed this Saturday. Hopefully it isn’t the latter.

    1. east-ky-boy

      Looks like captain negative is back on the threads. Let me guess, u hope Peyton manning I MEAN drew barker comes in Saturday and tears it up? 😂

    2. TBW3011

      I hope whoever the QB is tears it up. I’m not going to pump sunshine when we play like crap. It’s not negative to call a spade a spade.

  2. KYcats11

    I expected Elam to not be great against eku as there was no chance of eku running up the middles against our big boys, and from what I can remember, they didn’t run up the middle at all really. Elam is more of a run stopper not a pass rusher, and if they are not running up the middle, he’s not going to be very productive. Heck even if you think he should be a pass rusher, even our 2 great outside pass rushers weren’t very productive because EKU was doing very quick passes, so you can’t expect elam to get there in time. Matter of fact Elam did his job, his presence prevented eku from even thinking of running up the middle. Go Big Blue! Go Elam.

  3. BigBlueBass

    Hard to listen to man named Booger….

  4. maximumscott

    He should PICK and choose his statements wisely.

  5. jomani

    Elam may have had 4 tackles against southern miss but they were more of the result of the rb going straight at him and Elam falling on him. Watch when he’s on the field and look who on the line gets the least push. It’s Elam every. Single. Time.

  6. A_Blue_Wildcat

    He isn’t wrong, Elam’s laziness is pretty obvious. Also stop calling them kids, you’re not a kid anymore when you’re in your 20s.

  7. Tone

    Maybe try listening to Matt’s podcast with Booger – he explains why he would say this.

  8. Poppschmidty

    Elam wouldn’t be such a target if he weren’t such a disappointment for that 5 star ranking he had. It’s ok, he’ll have a good education, because he won’t be playing on Sundays.

  9. hillbilly cat

    Elam is what he is and after 4 years at UK his attitude and work ethic doesn’t appear to have changed (despite how much we talk about it). But I don’t fault him. It is the coaches that continue to give him playing time and reward him despite his “laziness”. He and Boom walked off the field last year after being upset at the coaches. So they were both rewarded with more playing time. Politics and trying to keep players happy over performance will be the downfall of this coaching staff.

  10. AllBall

    I agree with others, there wasn’t much positive to discuss about the game. Also, Elam is a waste of NFL potential given his frame and physical tools. His career stats at UK are horrendous. Take off the blue blinders.

  11. UKfanforlife

    I don’t know what Mat Elam is capable of doing on the field. If I could compare him to anyone else in UK athletics, I would say that Elam is the Melvin Turpin of Kentucky football. He won’t or can’t get his weight down and it prevents him from being a dominant player. Because he was ranked so high, coming out of high school, the media and fans call him a bust. Maybe he was just ranked too high on false potential..

    The difference between Melvin and Elam is that Turpin actually put up some big numbers in college and had a 3 to 4 year pro career before his weight knocked him out of the league.

    I would love to see Mr Elam make the pros, but I don’t see it happening. He may not be able to shed the weight and just have one of those bodies that has a very slow metabolism. If he has that problem now, he will have a huge issue, when he gets middle aged.