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UK Secondary Coach Steve Clinkscale will Return in 2018


Lamar Thomas and Steve Clinkscale were hired by Mark Stoops in 2016.  At the conclusion of the two-year contracts, only Clinkscale’s has been renewed.

According to Jon Hale of the Courier-Journal, Stoops will retain defensive backs coach Steve Clinkscale for the 2018 season.  The details of Clinkscale’s extension are not yet known, but the news has been confirmed by a UK spokesperson.

Known as “Coach Clink” by his players, his secondary was arguably the most critiqued unit on the team in 2017.  With a highly-touted wealth of experienced depth, UK’s pass defense fell from 5th in the SEC in 2016 (206 yards per game), to 13th in 2017 (251.6 ypg).

However, Clinkscale has done something no Kentucky football coach has ever done before him: recruit Michigan.  The top-ranked player in the state of Michigan, Marquan McCall, is the top-ranked player in UK’s 2018 recruiting class and will fill the Cats’ greatest position of need, nose guard.  Clinkscale also signed early enrollee safety DeAndre Square from Detroit powerhouse Cass Tech.

Even though the secondary did not live up to the hype in 2017, Clink has plenty of redeeming qualities as an assistant and a year of success from 2016 his unit could rediscover in 2018.

Article written by Nick Roush

"Look upon the doughnut, and not upon the hole." @RoushKSR

13 responses to “UK Secondary Coach Steve Clinkscale will Return in 2018”

  1. catsfan9508

    I’m not trying to be negative I swear. I even caught myself getting excited about our defense with the news everyone returning next year. I will say tho i dont know how you can keep this guy. Unless stoops will be more involved . The defense was horrible and this article shows. We fell to a

    1. catsfan9508

      We fell from 5th to 13 like stated. That’s pretty bad. I may be in the minority but I honestly believe we have sec talent from top to bottom. But when you look at especially past couple years our defense has been on a decline. I’m not a coach so I don’t have the answers. But so many times I remember thinking man it looks like we’re not getting coached up. To many fundamental mistakes. I hope we see changes next season. Because what I’m afraid of is this is simply a loyalty extension. Yeah I love my coach to be loyal but just like dj Eliot you HAVE to know when to make a change. Just so aggravating. You feel like e as uk fans settle so much for moral victories because we don’t have the greatest history. Ok I get it but we are not trying to do anything different if we stay status quo. Outside of the 2 big recruits what has been successful for this coach? I’m still going to cheer for my team. I just don’t want to miss out on opportunities like this year. GO CATS!!! #BBN

    2. Rembrandt

      There is a case for, and also a case not as favorable for, retaining Clinkscale. Clearly, Clinkscale is one of our most important recruiters. They aren’t going to ax the guy who just signed Marquan McCall and DeAndre Square while he is still in the hunt to sign Tyrone Sampson, Jr. Clinkscale has also made important inroads on some key 2019 prospects.

      However, our secondary will lose every starter after the 2018 season. 2019 will be the time when younger players like Griffin, Corker, Nesbitt, Dort, Ajian, Gilliam, Robinson, Garner, and Brown must step up big in our secondary. I’m not sure whether Clinkscale is the right coach to lead that transition. With a new assistant coach still to be hired, the staff could be reshuffled to move Clinkscale over to associate recruiting coordinator and other duties.

      I think Stoops has already tipped his hand on this by going hard after Derrick Ansley and Ed Reed to fill the new coaching position. Unfortunately he didn’t get Ansley, but I think the handwriting may be on the wall.

  2. bbnboy2012

    Jesus Christ. It had been nothing but positive news until this.

  3. bbnboy2012

    This HAS to be the Deandre Square/ Marquan McCall effect which is NOT a good reason to extend his contract.

    1. LaRueBlue

      I’d disagree. He’s in on a bunch of the top Michigan guys next year. He’s probably not gonna be as hands on with the DBs. Ed Reed will have control of the safeties when he gets to town. Just a case of a guy who had too much on his plate. Remember when everyone was jock riding Derrick Ansley he was only coaching Corners. Bradley Dale Peveto was the safety coach. Food for thought.

    2. Rembrandt

      I also disagree. Clinkscale is one of the most important recruiters on our staff. Just because Clinkscale’s contract was renewed, that doesn’t necessarily mean his coaching duties will remain the same.

  4. UKinIN

    What’s the point of bringing in talent if you can’t “Coach “em up.”? If the issues in the secondary are or aren’t Clinksdale’s fault Stoops still needs to have a plan tfor improvement.

    1. steve simpson

      UKinIN. Let’s agree to save this post till next year. If they improve, which they will. You apologize to Clink????

  5. ClutchCargo

    Nowhere does it say he will still be the DB coach. Calm down, people.

  6. J-Dub421

    A lot of the issues with the secondary this season were caused by poor defensive line play. If line play improves, then the secondary won’t be stretched so thin and asked to do too much.

    1. hitman72

      Exactly DB’s can only cover Receivers for so long and if the Dline doesn’t get enough pressure on the QB then he has all day to throw to guys who are wearing out DB’s which leads the receivers to be more open. To be honest LeBlanc hasn’t been all that impressive with our dline which really regressed this past year.

  7. Alleykat16

    Coach Stoops has got to get involved in coaching this defense when people talk about teams they always speak how the teams mirrors their coach as in an offensive head coach a team plays great on the offensive side of the ball a defensive coach usually plays great defense but that’s not really happening with this team maybe he will get with the defense and tune them guys up to play like he coached at Florida st. I mean that’s what got him this head coaching job i the first place