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Guessing Mark Stoops’ 47th Birthday Wish


In case you hadn’t heard, Mark Stoops is celebrating a birthday today. The Kentucky head football coach and leader of the new wave turned 47 on Wednesday, a cool 47, some would say. The youngest of the four Stoops brothers, Mark is described as the ‘fun one.’ “He’s got a great nature, a great personality,” older brother Ron Jr. once said. “Mark’s a lot of fun.”

So does that mean he is out partying tonight? Maybe, but probably not. The Opening is on ESPNU right now and it’s kind of a big deal. But wherever he is and whatever he is doing, I assume there is birthday cake involved. And with birthday cake comes birthday candles. And with the candles, one birthday wish.

Tonight, we try to enter the brain of Mark Stoops to predict his one birthday wish before the candles are out. As always, if you think you can do better, share your own suggestions in the comments section.

And shame on you if you forgot to get him a gift.


Birthday Wish No. 1: An SEC Football Win

It has been 956 days since the University of Kentucky last won a football game against a Southeastern Conference opponent. Mark Stoops was an assistant at Florida State at the time and he and the Seminoles were busy beating Florida on the road in Gainesville as the Cats defeated Tennessee. Coincidentally, that day, November 26, 2011, is also the last time Stoops beat an SEC opponent. He would lose to Florida the following season and then go 0-8 in conference play in his first season in Lexington.

Needless to say, Stoops is hungry to get back in the win column against the SEC.

Birthday Wish No. 2: A lifetime commitment from Vince Marrow to remain by his side.

Though Marrow insists he will forever roll with Stoops, the offers will get bigger as his success on the recruiting trail continues at UK. We learned earlier in the summer that Marrow turned down offers from at least two Big Ten schools and one pro team this offseason, offers described as “very attractive positions at very attractive programs.” But Marrow stayed with Stoops, at least for now.

It wouldn’t be a bad idea to spend that 47th birthday wish on keeping Vince Marrow forever.

Birthday Wish No. 3: Damien Harris

The No. 1 in-state prospect and the No. 1 running back in the 2015 class, Damien Harrises don’t come around these parts very often. Hatcher, Barker and Elam were huge gets from the state of Kentucky, but Harris would be the biggest of them all.

The safe bet is on Stoops closing his eyes and making a big wish for Harris before he blows out the candles tonight.

Birthday Wish No. 4: A win on November 29, 2014

That is the date of the final regular season game of the year, at Louisville. It will be the first of many head-to-head meetings with the Louisville version of Bobby Petrino and Stoops would love nothing more than to start the series at 1-0 with a road win against the Cardinals to, dare I say, send UK to its first bowl game since 2011.

But why waste a wish on this? It’s already happening.

Birthday Wish No. 5: Better officials in the Mississippi State game

Namely ones that won’t call offsides on a kickoff, especially a kickoff that should’ve resulted in a successful onside for a much-needed extra possession late in the game.

Remember this? I’m not sure Stoops has slept since then.

Birthday Wish No. 6: A Quarterback

Here we are again, months away from the season opener, and Kentucky is without a clear-cut starting quarterback. The options are there, they’re working hard, but no one has emerged as a leader and taken over the offense. Stoops needs that guy and he needs him early in the fall to avoid the disaster of a competition we saw last season.

Birthday Wish No. 7: Continued fan support

Big Blue Nation has been great since Stoops’ arrival in Lexington, but fans are starting to get testy without seeing progress on the field. Stoops needs to maintain fan support throughout the 2014 season as he continues his plan to be competitive by 2015. Improvement is expected this coming season, but the program can’t afford to lose the momentum if the results aren’t much better than a year ago.

Birthday Wish No. 8: No off-the-field trouble

Without naming names, a couple of guys are walking on thin ice and need to avoid any more trouble at all costs. I believe you all know who I’m talking about. With depth already an issue across the board, it would be a backbreaker to lose players for off-the-field behavior, especially his contributing guys.

Birthday Wish No. 9: Damien Harris

I said that, didn’t I?

Well make two wishes, three if that’s sanctioned. Make all of the wishes. Wish, wish, wish.

“Chantel, get more candles! We’re wishing for Damien Harris in here!”

Birthday Wish No. 10: The 2014 SEC Championship

Unrealistic? Sure. But my birthday was a couple weeks ago and I wished for Kate Upton to kick down the door, rip off all of her clothes and feed me soft shell tacos until we passed out together in a bed of shredded cheese and sour cream. Of course that didn’t happen, but a man can dream.

Why not go all out with the birthday wish? Wish for that Southeastern Conference trophy. #WhyNot


Happy Birthday, Coach.

Article written by Drew Franklin

I can recite every line from Forrest Gump, blindfolded. Follow me on Twitter: @DrewFranklinKSR

5 responses to “Guessing Mark Stoops’ 47th Birthday Wish”

  1. Biff Switters

    Hey Coach

    Happy Birthday! And thanks for coming to Kentucky and bringing that swagger!!!

    Five quick words for the upcoming season and these are words beyond ‘F’ all the neigh sayers!:




  2. mike

    #4- It will be the second meeting between Stoops & Petrino. Petrino was at Western last year when they beat us.

    1. Truth

      Apparently drew doesn’t pay as much attention to football as he does to basketball (Can we blame him? Lol)
      Yea… As much as I would LOVE to go in and beat Louisville.. I just don’t see it happening anytime soon. Strong left them with a VERY well stocked team that has experience and talent (Their juniors and seniors were around for that #3 Ranked Florida sugar Bowl Win 2 years ago and the thumping of Miami last year in a bowl game. Prime example is almost all of their team is on watch lists and freakiest player lists). Not to mention petrino is currently something like 6-1 in games against UK (Even with a WKU team he beat us.. And his only loss to us ever was his first year with a rebuilding Arkansas program).
      Trust me… Id love a HUGE upset… But it just doesn’t seem like it is in us at the moment. I mean we are coming off of two back to back 2-10 seasons with almost 1000 days since and in conference SEC win AND we haven’t beat an In state school in the last 6 games…
      I’m sorry, but we are dreaming if we think stoops has anything on Petrino… (I honestly was a part of the Pick him up UK crew when he first got dismissed.. I wanted Petrino bad) He is a mastermind. Sports Illustrated ranked him as the 9th best coach in the country for gods sake…
      It’s going to be a very long rivalry from now on….
      I’m just looking to basketball.

  3. FlySoup

    and now your wish won’t ever come true, Drew! first rule of wish making: don’t ever tell anyone what you wished for

  4. dakari stoops