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About the “Toxic” Comments from Mark Stoops


Mark Stoops’ Kentucky football team did what they had to do to grind out a 20-13 win over Vanderbilt.  Now with a .500 record heading into a Bye Week and winnable games ahead, one would assume there’d be mostly good vibes surrounding the program, but I think we all know what happens when you assume.

Much like the players and assistant coaches in the locker room, Mark Stoops was gassed at the podium after Saturday’s win.  Knowing he didn’t have a press conference in two days, Stoops waved off Tony Neely and allowed reporters to ask twice as many questions than he normally takes after a game.

After an uneventful line of questioning and few haphazard jokes, Kyle Tucker reformed a question that had been asked many times: What’s changed about the team since Southern Miss?  Tucker asked about the environment inside the locker room, but don’t let me paraphrase “locker room talk.”

The Question and Answer that Caused the “Controversy”

Q. You guys were in a storm a little bit as a team three weeks ago. Has there been an element within that locker room on the practice field across the board of sort of us against the world and a rallying in the mentality of this team from sort of what how bad things looked three weeks ago?

MARK STOOPS: I think part of that, part of that. I told them in the locker room, after the Southern Mississippi game, first thing I told them, I grabbed them up, I wanted to see the whites of their eyes, and I told them to stay the course. I said, every son of a gun outside of this room right here will be attacking you and me. So put your head down, do your job, and go to work. Because there’s nowhere to run and there’s nowhere to hide. You either man up and get better or you cave.

And we’re still working, you know that, but nobody’s been hesitant, it’s about getting back and getting to work. We knew we had a good football team. We’re not a great team, but we’re a work in progress and we’re getting better and better. And I love their attitude and I love the way they work and so we do need everybody back on board.

And I’ve said that — I’ll tell you this: It’s very hard to get something turned when it’s toxic and negative. And the criticism, we deserve it sometimes. And that’s, you know that. I sat here and taken it and will. When you deserve to be criticized, you take it like a man and move on. But the toxic, negative stuff, very hard to turn a program when people turn that way, and turn on the kids and turn on the players. Coaches deserve to be criticized. That’s our job, it’s part of our job, but the players and getting toxic and negative and being all that, that’s not going to help get this program to where we want it to go. I promise you.

The press conference ended and the controversy began.

Jen Smith Tweeted a paraphrased version of Stoops’ toxic comment.  “The toxic negative stuff where fans turn on the players makes it tough to turn a program around, Stoops said.”  Without the ability to understand context, those who love to bash Mark Stoops and Kentucky football heard exactly what they wanted to.

Sitting inside the press room, the hairs on the back of my neck where standing when he said, “I wanted to see the whites in their eyes.”  I froze, imagining the moment where Stoops rallied the troops to turn the season around.  “Us against the world” is a mentality Kentucky fans appreciate.  “Kentucky against all y’all” is a phrase from a t-shirt I saw multiple times outside of the stadium, but what if I told you the “y’all” was actually the “me?”

Mark Stoops stated how he used the toxic environment created by negative fans to produce improved play.  So far, it’s worked.  And yet, people are upset that he said it.

It’s dishonest to describe Stoops’ statements about the toxicity amongst fans as inaccurate.  On Friday’s edition of KSR, one day before one of the biggest games of the season, there were at least three callers inquiring about a new head coach, dropping in the names of Jeff Brohm, Les Miles and even Mike Leach.  WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU PEOPLE!?!?

But that isn’t the saddest side of humanity.  That occurred too weeks earlier before the South Carolina game.  I didn’t realize I had that many “friends” until vicious rumors about Mark Stoops began to circulate around Lexington.  Conservatively, 50 people asked me if they were true, before telling me their version of the twisted tale.  One went so far as to call me on my way to the press conference to ask why Stoops wouldn’t address the unfounded rumors after an SEC victory.  Most of my friends are Kentucky football fans, yet I usually only hear from 2-3 on gamedays; the awfulness brought everyone out of the woodwork.

 “That’s not going to help get this program to where we want it to go. I promise you.”

Stoops’ promise is true.  To deny it would be dishonest, just ask Jordan Griffin’s mother, Judy.

The freshman cornerback from Georgia was the second-highest rated recruit Stoops signed in the 2016 class.  On the even of National Signing Day, Stoops was taking calls from Jordan as coaches pleaded him on the other line.  Stoops went to war to get Griffin to Kentucky.  His mother doesn’t believe that would be the case if she knew then what she knows now.

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But wait, it gets worse.  Ms. Griffin’s comments were validated by the responses to these Tweets.  The worst of the worst:

  • “Get over yourself.. It’s not always hugs and kisses in life.. “They say the truth hurts”
  • “You know what makes fans toxic? Losing a football game to southern Mississippi.”
  • “Stoops singling out the MINORITY of fans who are ‘toxic’ only sheds unwarranted attention on a loyal fan base.”
  • “After 60 years I think the “small fans” that’s been there deserve better. Like you said its your first year.”
  • “Are you serious? Lmao go anywhere but Alabama its the same thing but let them lose its worse. grow up no safe spaces in life.”
  • “The fix is to…win.”

Luckily, those responses were a minority to the dozens upon dozens who rushed to share their support of Ms. Griffin.  Many pointed out that it’s just a small, loud, stupid segment of fans.

“Stupid” is the only way to describe the last comment.  WE WON THE GAME ON SATURDAY!!!!!!! I know it was tough.  Like me, you probably had to say “we won” out loud to yourself after the game as reassurance, but that statement is as true now as it was then: Kentucky won the football game on Saturday.

These stupid fans tell you to “stick to sports” but they don’t want to talk about sports.  If they did they might wonder why we were in the Wildcat formation for the last offensive third down.  They would actually talk about the game instead of the politics surrounding it.  Instead, these idiots care more about the gossip or the next head coach than what happened in the game.

If there’s one thing I’ve learned from covering Mark Stoops over the last four years is that he tells it like it is.  It’s one of his best qualities.

He told it like it was on Saturday.  He said what had to be said.  If you get angry about it, than you’re part of the problem.  You care more about the 140-character Tweet than the 287-word call-to-action that salvaged the season.

If you want Kentucky to win, you cheer for them.  You might get upset with a play-call, you’ll curse when a player misses a tackle, you’ll tell self-deprecating Kentucky football jokes, but if you’re Tweeting players’ mothers and being terrible on the coaches call-in show after a win…you’re the worst type of person.  You don’t have to be a “Chester,” just don’t be a jerk.

Mark Stoops’ team is tirelessly working to turn this program around.  Unfortunately, Mark Stoops’ postgame statement was probably correct.  If things do not change, negative fans will create a destructive self-fulfilling prophecy, followed with an, “I told you so.”

Article written by Nick Roush

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

49 Comments for About the “Toxic” Comments from Mark Stoops

  1. jaws2
    9:38 pm October 10, 2016 Permalink

    Nick, I could not agree more. Excellent.

  2. 3andOut
    9:48 pm October 10, 2016 Permalink

    Great article Nick. Atleast someone at KSR gets it.

  3. Bobmorrison
    9:49 pm October 10, 2016 Permalink

    Well put.

  4. UK Big Board Update
    9:57 pm October 10, 2016 Permalink

    Its the negative vocal minority that gives the rest of us a bad look.

    BluKudzu and his “twitter muscles”, for instance.

    • BluKudzu
      10:32 pm October 10, 2016 Permalink

      There you are. Are you UKBBU or someone stealing it? You don’t hear me on a call in show. You will never see senda a tweet. You will never see me call out a player or a player’s parent. And you will never see me hide and make accusations under another stolen name in a forum.
      You will see me share an opinion, and you will see me bitch about coaching and the progress of the program going into the 4th year.
      (One has to wonder though, had the fan base did not say “enough is enough” regarding the defense, would we still be putting up with what we saw with Southen Miss or New Mexico State?)
      So even better yet, before you ever call anyone out, you need to look at yourself. You still are a coward, stealing names and writing crap they never would.
      You are the worst, much worse than a toxic fan.
      You are a liar and a coward, and those are the best of your qualities.

    • UK Big Board Update
      11:23 pm October 10, 2016 Permalink

      LOL. WTF are you talking about? You are falling apart.

    • UK Big Board Update
      11:32 pm October 10, 2016 Permalink

      I love that when haters are called out by someone OTHER than me, they still think its me, “faking” to be someone else!!! LMAO.

      Like I need more than one account to call you on your bullshit.

      I guess I’ve made my mark on these miserable fools. 😉

    • BluKudzu
      12:09 am October 11, 2016 Permalink

      Your multiple responses says it all. Still being a coward and still being a liar. You are such a little person. Everyone knows you are nothing more than a lowlife troll.
      You could not call out bullshit if you had a mouth full. Your knowledge of sports is well below the IQ of the skidmarks in your shorts.

    • UK Big Board Update
      12:37 am October 11, 2016 Permalink

      Please refer to comment 14. 😉

      And you’re about as scary as a kitten. Its funny, really. You have been called out by more people than just me, and your response is always the same. “I’m awesome and always right, and everyone else is inferior to me”

      Do you have facebook or twitter? I’m interested in seeing what a little bitch like you actually looks like. I bet its not impressive. 😀

    • UK Big Board Update
      12:43 am October 11, 2016 Permalink

      And I bet you wont reveal your identity – because you’re scared.

    • BluKudzu
      1:05 am October 11, 2016 Permalink

      Your my bitch now. You can’t stop. You are what Trump grabs. BTW, I know who you are.

    • BluKudzu
      1:09 am October 11, 2016 Permalink

      Compared to you, I am always right, and it is getting boring, sugar cakes.
      I have neither twitter or facebook, but I would be willing to buy you a beer, should your coward ass ever show up.

    • BluKudzu
      1:23 am October 11, 2016 Permalink

      Let me guess….coors light or a cider?

    • BluKudzu
      1:36 am October 11, 2016 Permalink

      Oh, I know….you will have a vinegar and water!
      The latest picture I have of me, is the one with your woman. She was really smiling, finally being with a man.

    • Kizzy
      10:41 am October 11, 2016 Permalink

      Yes ukbigblueboard stole my identity on here to posting stupid stuff.I’ve called him out on it.

    • UK Big Board Update
      11:24 am October 11, 2016 Permalink


      You guys are so paranoid!!

    • Bluebloodtoo
      11:35 am October 11, 2016 Permalink

      Surusly guys? I have these days too, but I usually regret them the next day. I hope both of you regret this shameful adolescent display tomorrow.

  5. Stoops4President
    10:01 pm October 10, 2016 Permalink

    Good read. I agree with Matt Jones today on the show when he said that social media venues such as Twitter give the very vocal, negative minority of the fan base a voice.
    I am still very much on board with Stoops. I think some tend to forget that this is his first stint as a head coach, which I am sure any college or pro coach will tell you is a big difference from being a coordinator.

    • Sentient Third Eye
      8:31 am October 11, 2016 Permalink

      There’s also a certain element that are just trolls. A lot of Louisville fans know that if UK ever gets its act together, they will never see another important recruit from in-state, and they will be relegated to Western Kentucky’s level.

  6. cayts23
    10:11 pm October 10, 2016 Permalink

    I don’t think you should tweet at the players or their families, but on the KSR Football Podcast Jared Lorenzen predicted 4-8 and constantly crushes Dorian Baker and Nick laughs about it. Would that not be defined as toxic behavior? Twitter has given the worst of the fan base a voice and unfortunately it makes it look like everyone is attacking the players when only a small percentage really are.

  7. ukcatfan15
    10:16 pm October 10, 2016 Permalink

    Great article and we’ll said!

  8. Luvas
    10:22 pm October 10, 2016 Permalink

    I would never defend the minority of jerks but I will never accept blame for the fans either. Google Blanton Collier and do the math…I would focus the blame on an M and a B and go from there…

  9. hweathers
    10:26 pm October 10, 2016 Permalink

    Great article. Coaches and players should not have to put up with the crap thrown at them on social media, call-in shows, etc. In most cases, they wouldn’t say that to their faces. But I do think it’s kinda funny that all these people know coaching and recruiting better than the coaches.

  10. wildcat dave
    10:31 pm October 10, 2016 Permalink

    Absolutely the best word of the day about UK football! Stoops was spot on with his comments and thank you for having his back. UK fans have a basketball mentality – one 5-star recruiting class and you can be final four bound – but that just doesn’t work for football. Takes 5-6 years just to get players strong and deep enough to compete in SEC. What I’m most tired of is the game of musical coaches we have played here for too long. Let’s get behind this team and these coaches!

  11. KYcats11
    10:37 pm October 10, 2016 Permalink

    HELL YEAH!!!!!

  12. The Frizz
    11:23 pm October 10, 2016 Permalink

    Agree. Thank you. Go Cats.

  13. BluKudzu
    12:00 am October 11, 2016 Permalink

    Great article, the best I have read in a long time.
    Toxic fanbases evolve. They evolve from frustration, they evolve from thinking they have been made fools.
    I think anyone would tell you, following the debacle of a season last year, with the first 3 games of this year, clearly, we were not getting what we paid for.
    Unfortunately some made it personal with the kids, and worse, the parents. No reason for that. I have stated more than once, how bad I feel for the kids and parents in this situation. I have even done the same about Stoops.
    I have been critical of the coaches, especially defensively, and the AD.
    I commend Stoops for making the changes defensively. Hind sight is 20-20. How much better would it have been if he had done this ladt year? Maybe, not as Toxic?

  14. WeareBBN
    12:10 am October 11, 2016 Permalink

    All teams have the same responses to losses. Facts are we expected more wins and more success. Beating EKU in OT is not what we should be doing. Being ranked in the 80’s, out of 128, is not where we should be. Losing at home to USM in year 4 is not where we should be. I don’t expect us to be SEC champs, although how great would that be, but I expect us to compete vs top teams and not barely beat bad teams, especially at home. USM just lost to UTSA yet beat us. NMSU is horrible and we struggled into the 4th quarter with them. No doubt we have some good players, more than we have ever had but results are still not there and same mistakes keep costing us. I buy season tix but was not there Saturday, my decision based on 3.5 hour drive each way and cost of food, gas, hotel etc. If I keep going to a diner and keep getting bad food I am a fool to keep going back and giving them my money. I must see a reason to keep spending, have decided I will renew next year but that may be it unless I get some return, decent play, on my investment. When I think of that game at UF it really makes me mad, the impression was nobody cared or wanted to be there, that was toxic on national tv and not anything to do with the fans, there were several us there despite what happened the week before.

  15. CarolinaMedCat
    12:16 am October 11, 2016 Permalink

    To all the idiots who say “you’re part of the problem if you’re happy with losing to Southern Miss and getting blasted by Florida”….

    Absolutely nothing good comes to our team from being such a loud critic/skeptic. Nothing. It doesn’t help the team. Maybe it props up your own ego… which is probably the goal. It doesn’t make you the smartest person in the room. It doesn’t make you a football guru that enlightens the rest of us ignorant, in-the-dark, blind, mindless followers of the pied piper.

    Your rants against the team/players does NOTHING positive. Nothing positive comes out of it. Nothing. I hate to inform you that you’re not that important. Only negative comes from negativity. SO , if you’re going to piss and moan all year DURING the season – go buy some Louisville gear. WE don’t want you as a fan. And in my opinion, if you can’t support the football team, your basketball fan card should be revoked as well.

  16. Theymademesignup
    12:49 am October 11, 2016 Permalink

    People who believe this are complete and total idiots. He has to have an excuse. Fans are trying to chase his ass out of town so now he turns it around on the fans. If you think UK is the only school with some portion of negative fans then you are crazy. Have you paid any attention to the other schools in the SEC and their fans? Have you read a message board ever? Actually UK fans are much less active then these other schools so they are getting a much smaller dose of negativity. This is just another excuse from a piss poor coach to try and save his ass. Try at least going 6-6 as the 13th highest paid coach in college football and see where the fans are.

  17. CarolinaMedCat
    12:52 am October 11, 2016 Permalink

    Put on your happy face and bear it because you have no control over what happens. Being a miserable curmudgeon is your prerogative , but be forewarned, it is insignificant and impotent. But I suppose you are the realist in the room as to what our standards should be, because of your vast experience… we should listen to you. lol

  18. cats42301
    1:45 am October 11, 2016 Permalink

    I am not agreeing with fans who are negative and toxic but if someone wanted to take the time to research and write an a

  19. katmandue2you
    2:35 am October 11, 2016 Permalink

    I’m certainly in your camp Nick. But if we are going to do an expository on everyone’s reaction to this football season and the reaction and fallout from how the season has gone, let’s not leave out your boss Matt Jones. Matt has no doubt been the “bell cow” in taking a position from which much of the fan base obviously takes it’s lead. From the terrible loss to open the season Matt has piled it on hot and heavy and one might argue it was legit. However I say it is just as legit to argue he could have easily moderated his comments about Stoops and the state of affairs…knowing full well that he (unfortunately) is the one who many look to for their UK Sports fix. I also said the same of Tyler Thompson a week or so back and she blasted me. But she did nothing to defend her and Matt’s negativity toward the program. And now we have Matt trying to make something out of this post game comment by Stoops. As far as I am concerned there is nothing to stir up relative to the comment but Matt is doing his damndest to do just that ….Stir up some crap about it. I say shame on Matt Jones and his very overrated and often misguided ass!

  20. cats42301
    3:02 am October 11, 2016 Permalink

    Sorry hit post by mistake. In today’s internet world, 24 hour sports TV channels fans have multiple ways to convey their opinions and comments instantaneously. So that means that usually fans who are upset and mad over a loss or bad performance don’t give themselves time to cool off so they post anything and everything to let coaches and players know how they feel about things. While I am not in any way taking up for negative and toxic fans I think it’s only fair to put things in context and compare Kentucky’s football fans to those of other SEC schools. Most recently, LSU fires their coach who in the last decade or so gave them a national championship and a few SEC titles. If a coach did that in Lexington the stadium would be renamed in his honor. Georgia fans were rabid over Richt and wanting d him fired after losing to rival Ga Tech, who was ranked #16 by the way. Fans said there was no way UGA should be losing to a team who has lesser facilities, lesser recruits and a much smaller football budget. Fulmer’s last straw at UT was his inability to beat Alabama who had racked up a 13 win streak against the Vols. Oh yeah and Phil won that natl title in 99. Auburn fans are taking to the net to voice their displeasure over Gus Malzahn who just got a raise this past summer. He won a national for Auburn in 2012 but now a lot of fans want him fired because of their recent record against power 5 oppoonents. Gene Chizik was coach at Auburn before Malzahn he won a title in 2010, 2 years later he was fired. Bill Curry who had a pretty decent record at alabama but he couldn’t beat auburn fans were so bad he had to resign and head up the road, we all know how that story went. Those are just a small sample of the way fans of other SEC teams have reacted over the years. At UK those toxic and negative fans are just wanting a football program to be competitive and go to a bowl game, something that would be laughed at at other schools. Fans of most every other SEC football teams literally expect their coaches and players to win a championship every year or they’ll want you fired sooner rather than later. Read some of their message boards and fansites.if you want to read REAL negativity and toxicity. Even the worst UK football fan is pretty mild compared to fans of other schools who actually have a rich football history. Calling out players for not performing is the norm rather than the exception. Coach Stoops knows, Florida St-Miami hate each other, I’d like for coach. Stoops to describe how negative and toxic Florida St. fans have been over losses to Miami and Florida but more so the Hurricanes. I am just about certain since he was defensive coordinator that he did his part in calling out Seminoles fans who posted internet messages about coaches and players while he was there. Wait, didn’t he? No we’re still waiting. My point to this long post is that the things.that Stoops is complaining about happens at every school and it happens at every school in the SEC and other than Vandy the toxicity and negativity of fans is by far WORSE, happens more frequently and it is a lot more intense than what a few UK fans ha e done. It’s been that way throughout history as I said it’s gotten worse because of the internet. I challenge all UK fans who are on this bandwagon with coach about negativity to go to others SEC teams message boards and read some of their posts about wanting their coach fired, which will be several schools, how other teams critique their players etc. and then compare that knowledge to the type of things Stoops refers to. You’ll find there is no comparison. UK football fans as a whole have been some of the most supporting, patient fans ever. Is there not a pretty good reason why fans who have poured their heart and soul into this program over many ,any years are upset and tired of having their heartbroken season after season? Coaches who have been in Lexington less than 4 years have no idea how some of our older fans feel. Any expectations fans have placed on this program were exexuted and fueled by Mark Stoops. Did he say 4 years ago when he wanted us to fill Commonwealth for a spring game that hey now you all don’t get carried away it’s going to take me 5-8 years or so to get to a bowl game? No. After a almost loss to EKU he called KSR and when asked about disorganization over things like 8 men on the field for a punt against Auburn he became perplexed and told Matt he needed to rally the fanbase, it was our fault again. Now again there is a problem with the fans, some fans want to win it seems and want to go to a bowl. Insensitive negative fans. Lastly I ask once again before you talk about how negative are fans are do some research about other sec teams and if you are honest with yourself you’re going to see that whatever a group of fans said or did was pretty mild. It seems a lot is being made over this and I would just like to hear from coach Stoops how negative and toxic the Seminoles were after a loss to Miami or Florida compared to the UK fans he is referring to. I don’t think there would be very much similarity at all.

    • Bluebloodtoo
      11:39 am October 11, 2016 Permalink

      Justifying your actions by pointing out others with worse actions will never make your actions less wrong.

  21. Ridge Runner
    4:07 am October 11, 2016 Permalink

    Albeit lengthy, this is more the fans actual perspective if we are honest than Nick’s post. great reality check here.

    • Ridge Runner
      4:11 am October 11, 2016 Permalink

      Meant to reply to Cats 42301 comment versus a stand alone comment.

  22. kfwa
    6:30 am October 11, 2016 Permalink

    Mrs. Griffin,

    Leave social media now and your day will be much better.

    This article only validates that Mrs. Griffin has no understanding that giving negative people an anonymous platform will result in commentary she is not prepared to receive. Of the hundreds of thousands if not millions of fans who have no interest in berating her son, she is opening herself up to the few that does.

    This will not change in the near future , nor will it change in a downturn of a losing season.

    Also , not sure of the point being made writing an article about fan negativity after a win by using a parent of a playing posting ish on twitter after a win.

  23. kampus korner
    6:34 am October 11, 2016 Permalink

    Nick Roush needs to get over himself. He can praise “Caesar” all he wants but if thinks his epistle will persuade long suffering UK fans to change they way they feel about Stoops lack of progress on the field he is living in a fantasy world. Criticism comes with the $3.5 million Stoops gets paid each each year. Fan criticism comes with every coaching position from the Pee Wee league, middle school, high school, college and the pros. To be sure, the unfounded rumors about Stoops and personal insults towards players cross the line of acceptability. and should not take place. However, such misguided juvenile expressions come from a minority of UK fans and do not define the majority of UK fans who have suffered mediocre to pathetic football for nearly six decades.

    UK fans have every right to question Stoops decision making and lack of progress just like every other fan of every other program in the United States. It is in the nature of being a fan. UK is not any different from every other school when it comes to fan frustration with perennially losing football. Stoops and his assistants are being paid more money than any coaching staff in the history of the University of Kentucky. UK has spent more money on upgrading its football facilities ($110 million), than at any time since Commonwealth Stadium was built in 1973, 43 years ago.

    Naturally, with this radical increase in investment dollars comes an increase in expectations that our football program will improve. Thus far it hasn’t. Deplorable losses to Vandy and Louisville last year as well barely beating EKU on our home field, losing to Southern Mississippi this year coupled with the 3 previous seasons of losing football have caused many UK fans to question whether Stoops can do the job. Yet despite these failures Roush and others expect UK fans to mute their growing discontent after having to pay ever increasing prices for tickets and parking passes? Get over yourself.

    The fan environment surrounding UK football is no more “toxic” than at any other school which has had suffer the ignominy being one of the perpetual bottom feeders of their conference. Stoops may be a super nice guy and trying his best but he is not being paid for these qualities alone; he is being paid to produce results and thus far he has failed. As a result, the criticism exists. He should expect it. He should also stop whining about it.

    • KYcats11
      7:15 am October 11, 2016 Permalink

      Stoops said that the fans have every right to criticize him. But he said criticizing the players is toxic and does not help the program AT ALL. You act like you want a good dang football program, but all up do is complain and bitch. If you wanted a dang football program so bad then maybe you would support the one we have and actually help rather than sitting on your couch typing up all this negativity.

  24. KYcats11
    7:18 am October 11, 2016 Permalink

    Notice that all of the negative comments have not gotten a single light. Not one of them is highlighted.

  25. eriecatfan
    7:50 am October 11, 2016 Permalink

    I rarely post on this board or any other but I am compelled to add to this conversation. In my opinion Jared Loenzen needs to shut his trap. As far as being negative towards the players his actions are shameful. It’s bad enough to have to deal with idiot fans but when a player hears that crap coming from a respected alumnus it has to be disheartening.

  26. Sentient Third Eye
    8:32 am October 11, 2016 Permalink

    Just remember that the rejects on twitter are not important enough to matter.

  27. stoopstroops
    8:44 am October 11, 2016 Permalink

    Fans need to be more realistic with expectations. I think that’s the main problem with the program as a whole. We need to realize that very best case senerio we we may win 8 regular season games. Anytime we make a bowl is a huge accomplishment for kentucky football. This is not a double digit win program

    • eriecatfan
      9:40 am October 11, 2016 Permalink

      I don’t agree with that either. We were very close to winning 8 games in 2014 and 9 games last year. There is no reason we can’t be a 10 win program on a fairly consistent basis, especially with the facilities we have now.

  28. secrick
    9:37 am October 11, 2016 Permalink

    Great article, that guy that calls in and gets all over Stoops is part of the problem, don’t even know his name but he battled with Chester on KSR. GO CATS and GO STOOPS

  29. ttabor
    11:12 am October 11, 2016 Permalink

    Thank you for this article! I’m not the biggest Nick fan on podcast, but I became one today after you called out Matt from high up on his HEY KY HIGH HORSE! Matt toned it down a little after getting called out by some of the players after the FL game. Not surprising that he didnt like stoops comment bc he has been part of the problem. He is smart enough to know what he is doing. Just like when “sec 225” got a KSR bump, his negativity can cause less people to be at the game too. Same goes for Jared and his negativity, can’t listen to it anymore. As someone who owns a business and has considered advertising, I can’t do it with Jared and Matt talking crap about my team. We have all watched the same thing, I know we shouldnt have lost to Southern Miss, and I know FL had zero postitives come from it…but as a fan, I can’t listen to you guys constantly bash a team that I love. A great american once said, “I’m a big blue fan in the morning, I’m a big blue fan today.” Well, I’m a big blue fan everyday! Win or lose. Go CATS! #teamchester #teamstoops

  30. Bluebloodtoo
    11:37 am October 11, 2016 Permalink

    Great article. Truth.

    I’m very impressed with the resolve this team is showing in the past two games. The resolve is the stuff that turns programs around. This is the part of Stoops personality that needs to be imprinted on every player that plays for him. This will make his teams successful.

  31. cats42301
    9:52 pm October 11, 2016 Permalink

    I’ve always tried to look at things with common sense and not be affected by emotion or hype. Having said that I’d like to give a couple of analogies. Have you ever criticized your college age server at a restaurant for not getting your order correct or for never coming to refill your drink and so forth? Have you instead asked for his manager and criticized his performance and service that way. What about the teen neighbor who mowed down your beautiful flowers when cutting your yard? Did you yell at him? Did you criticize him? Did you call his mother and complain to her? How many stories have you read in your lifetime about parents who got into a verbal and/or physical confrontation over a little league game that could have been started by one parent yelling at another’s child for making a bad play. If you haven’t been in any of these situations then you probably know someone who has. So should the person who criticized their college age server should not have done so because of the negativity and toxicity of such comments? When they did criticize their server or when they complained to the manager did he say to you, “your negative comments are certainly not helping what we’re trying to do here which is become one of the best restaurants in town”. When the lady complained and criticized the teen boy who cut her flowers down, was she out of line? Did his father call her I wonder and tell her, “had I known you were going to be so negative I would have NEVER let him come mow your yard”. The scenarios I gave may be silly but at the smallest level it is the same principle as the “negative and toxic fan argument”. It just goes against human nature to expect a person who loves football and loves Kentucky to not become emotional during a game and yes even yell at the very team and coaches they are supporting. Why? Not because they hate the player or hate the coach, because they want to win to shut up all the people who ridicule Kentucky football and for their love of this state and university. Is it right to do so most times? Probably not. But expecting people to go to a sporting event and not become emotional over a fumble, an interception, a bad play call by the coach, is just not feasible. You know who doesn’t complain? Who doesn’t become emotional at a UK football game? The people who really don’t care about football. The people who will always be one of those crazy fans Cal talks about when it comes to basketball and go wild and crazy watching a game at Rupp or yelling at your TV or your kids at home when the Cats squander away a chance to go to the national championship game because the coach tried to run the clock down too early. The person who goes to football on Saturday for something to do until it’s time for Big Blue Madness. I remember back in 2002 during the infamous Bluegrass Miracle game where earlier in the game when we were driving to score I was on my feet cheering, positive cheering, and I turn around and maybe 10 people in my section were up cheering as we were driving for a touchdown!! I yelled to everyone, if you wanna win get up off your butts and yell! Most looked at me like I was an idiot, that’s debatable, but anyway that’s the difference. Criticism, negativity, being graded on your performance, unfortunately is a fact in life.It would be nice if everyone were nice and there was nothing negative in life. Positivity in sports, fans that never yell at their own players and coaches only exist in fairy tales. There isn’t one college or pro sports team in the world that doesn’t have their own negative, toxic fans. Coaches that complain about it are wasting their breath because unless the coach has away to change human emotion it was always be the same. Heck, the Big Blue Nation has some of the most loyal basketball fans in the world but I will bet if people are honest with themselves they have at least yelled at a player or coach at least a few times in their life, whether it be at Rupp arena or in your own living room. Basketball coaches of the Kentucky Wildcats have one of the most stressful jobs in sports. Every UK basketball fan is a coach and has their opinion. However, I never heard one basketball coach complain about negative/toxic fans as a reason they didn’t win the game, win the conference championship etc. As far the author of this post, if you can’t honestly say you have never complained about someone’s service, performance like as in the examples above then I have to say you’re being a little hypocritical. It doesn’t have to be about sports, sports is only one example of the negative, toxic behavior you are describing. One thing is for certain, a big part of UK ever becoming successful in football depends on the fans who spend hundreds and thousands of dollars a year supporting the program. Calling out a portion of the fanbase, whether you agree with their methods or not, is not a very smart idea. Toxic or not they still spend their money on the UK football product. I can guarantee one thing they do not appreciate is a coach making nearly $4 million a year, blaming them for the failures of that coach. A large group of the football fanbase who decides next year year to say I know when I’m not wanted and cancel their season tickets and K fund donations is a sure fired way to make recruits feel that the fanbase does not support the coach, which would definitely hurt recruiting. So I feel EVERYONE needs to think about who they want to call out and complain about as the people responsible for the reason UK football has not been successful. To be fair I ask everyone to go back and read Nick’s posts in the past and see if he has EVER criticized a player for anything, a fumble, playing with no enthusiasm or energy etc.I find it impossible to believe a blogger has never criticized a player and if you have then please explain to all us what justifies you to write a post about negative, toxic fans. How is that not hypocritical? It’s easy to point fingers but many times the one pointing the finger needs point it towards themselves and critique their own actions of the past before they criticize someone else’s.