Big Blue Nation has every reason to believe in Mark Stoops and appreciate his early accomplishments. After all, he has motivated a fan base that was nonexistent a year ago, creating what will be one of the nation’s most attended Spring Games. Today began the long uphill battle of developing a winning attitude in a rebuilding program. The hype of Stoops’ recruiting class is simply hype until they arrive on campus in August.
The good news is that the coaching staff knows that they face the harsh reality of coaching a losing team. I admire Stoops consistently straight forward remarks, making a few today. Unlike the sugar coating former staff, Stoops noted that there were plenty of mistakes to be fixed. Dropped passes on offense and getting beat deep on defense, have been consistent problems in the past that take some time to be cured.
The good news lies in an unrelenting staff that is motivated in changing the program for the better. Today was the first day of what will be a constant push from the coaches, for the players to perform at an uptempo fast-pace in the most efficient manner possible. Coach Stoops hopes and expects his players to be able to operate in an uptempo style at the conclusion of Spring practice. His other primary goal of these first practices lies in understanding the basics of their new system. “Offensively and defensively at the end of these 15 practices our players should know, that ‘this is who we are offensively’ and ‘this is who we are defensively’. There will be much more, but the basics is a BIG part of who we are and they need to know that.” He has emphasized this cohesive goal since his first press conference on December 2nd. Changing the little things now, will help make way for systemic change in the future.
I don’t want to be Debbie Downer, but I hope the Big Blue Nation understands that greatness takes time and hard work. Feel confident knowing your Cats and new coaching staff are putting in the work to give us a better product for many autumns to come.