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Kentucky and Mark Stoops: A Football Match Made in Underdog Heaven


Anybody with an older brother knows the drill: growing up, you get beaten in sports so much that you start to wonder when it will ever be “your turn.”

In a lot of ways, Mark Stoops and Kentucky were made for each other.  Kentucky’s gotten used to being the “little guy” in football, constantly struggling to show the other programs that we can compete, too.  Mark, coming from his position at Florida State, is navigating difficult terrain under increased scrutiny because his older brother, Bob, has been so successful at Oklahoma.  During the regular season, at least.

But is Mark still operating under the “sibling rivalry” influence?  Probably not, in spite of what the Tulsa World has to say about “lowly” Kentucky’s new coach:

So, when reporters ask questions of Stoops, it will often be because his brother, the outspoken coach at OU, has made some headlines.

Bob may say it. Mark will have to answer for it now that he is essentially the bottom of the SEC.
Once again the Wildcats are picked to finish last in the SEC Eastern Division. It is Kentucky’s usual spot in the football polls and standings.
So, Mark Stoops will have some explaining to do for his own team as well as anything his brother may say.

The whole article isn’t exactly kind to Kentucky football, but it’s not inaccurate either.  It points out our position at the bottom of the SEC East, and our deserved reputation as a basketball school.  And it doesn’t go out of its way to paint a great picture of Mark Stoops, either.  It’s very much an Oklahoma piece talking about the little brother of Oklahoma’s head football coach.

But if you read between the lines, there’s room for interpretation, and inspiration.  This is uncharted territory for everybody involved.  Mark isn’t going into a traditional, albeit run-down powerhouse like his brother did.  He’s a new coach at a school with new expectations.  And while the Tulsa World rightly points out that “there is no quick fix in Kentucky,” that doesn’t mean that the team, and the coach, can’t get some chips off their shoulders.  Mark Stoops and Kentucky football both have something to prove.  Whether it’s competing with an actual big brother, or catching up to a trailblazing SEC, the opportunity to earn respect from the Tulsa Worlds of the universe is there.

Article written by Corey Nichols

6 Comments for Kentucky and Mark Stoops: A Football Match Made in Underdog Heaven

  1. hersheyisabear
    6:14 pm August 19, 2013 Permalink

    I hope the BBN will be understanding of this upcoming season. We have much to be excited for.

  2. tdogg40330
    6:23 pm August 19, 2013 Permalink

    1) I’ll understand that they better look out in years to come. CATS gonna
    start 3-0 with a win over UL at home. Timmons, Sanders and Kemp gonna run
    wild on some fools …lol

  3. Al/in/Indy
    7:22 pm August 19, 2013 Permalink

    3, most likely you’re a guy who’d hunting for some action with other guys….I mean that’s what Loogieville fans do isn’t it? Meet up with skanks at a restaurants and hang out with someone who’ll talk on their level….Like 3rd grade level! F-ING pervs!!!!!!

    1) I’m sure BBN will understand if we take a thumping this year. Unlike our little Bruh to the north who has a schedule of a decent HS team. AND we have the toughest schedule in the NATION! I think we’ll be ok as long as we compete, and not lay down like last year.
    2) I can’t wait we absolutely de-feather those meth smoking teeth showing idiots. Teddy will be like “Water under the BRIDGE” GO CATS!!!!!!!!!!

  4. Al/in/Indy
    7:23 pm August 19, 2013 Permalink

    Wait….What? I’m number 3….The former Number 3 was a perv anyway!

  5. god irony
    8:43 pm August 19, 2013 Permalink

    I am an Oklahoma alumni and have lived in central Kentucky for the last 20 years. I can tell you that back in Oklahoma folks are asking how in the hell is Mark out recruiting Bob. Oh and no one in Oklahoma likes anything from Tulsa.

  6. jpgott2
    10:46 pm August 19, 2013 Permalink

    I love how the columnist writes like UK has been dead last in the SEC East for the last decade. Vandy has had 2 OK seasons under a new coach, and everyone forgets hat they were the SEC doormat for almost ever. UK under Brooks, and when Mummie was here a least competed with teams.

    To those who continue to ask the BBN for patience, I say we know. The BBN has had so much disappointment that patience is the one thing UK football fans have is patience. This will be a tough year, but most of BBN just want to see our football team be competitive and not look completely lost. Basically, just see improvement throughout the season and let the cards fall where they may.

    Go Big Blue!