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Gunnar Hoak doesn’t know what his future holds at Kentucky

Set to graduate in May, quarterback Gunnar Hoak has a decision to make when it comes to his final years of eligibility. He could stay and compete for the starting job with Terry Wilson, or he could transfer and be eligible to play elsewhere immediately.

When asked about Hoak last week, Kentucky head coach Mark Stoops was brutally honest when it came to the quarterback’s future with the program.

While he’d love him to stay, he understands the reality of the situation that it might now work out that way in the end.

“I’m not sure (what he’s going to do),” Stoops said. “I going to sit down with Gunnar next week and we will talk about his plans and what he has planned. I don’t know. … Of course I want Gunnar here but I’ll be very supportive of him whatever he decides to do.”

Following his combined 262-yard, two-touchdown performance in the Spring Game on Friday night, Hoak said that his focus right now is to finish out the semester strong academically.

From there, he’ll sit down with his family and make the best decision for his future.

“My main goal right now is to focus on these last two weeks of finals, of course,” he said. “I came here to graduate. That’s the biggest goal in life, to get through college and get a degree, so right now I have to focus on finals, these final papers. We’ll see what happens from there.”

Kentucky co-offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Darin Hinshaw said after the game that every conversation he has had with Hoak has been about returning to UK and letting the process ride out.

“The only times I’ve talked to Gunnar, I’ve laid the path of him being here at Kentucky,” he said. “Getting a Master’s degree, which he will be able to get 30 hours done in three semesters, no problem. He can stay here, get his Master’s degree, and go compete to be the starting quarterback. And you can see he’s doing it.”

While Hinshaw understands that Hoak does have a tough decision to make and he will support him in whatever he decides to do, he thinks it’s in his best interest to return to Kentucky.

“Terry and him have an unbelievable relationship,” he said. “Sometimes the grass looks greener somewhere else, but the bottom line is that he’s put in his time, gotten better, and he can win for us. I’m very excited about him and staying here and being a part of our program. We want him to be here at Kentucky.”

In Hinshaw’s eyes, competition helps the entire roster get better, and he’s hoping that will continue with Hoak still with the program throughout the summer and into the 2019 season.

“I’m proud of all the quarterbacks, especially Gunnar,” he said. “He really came out and competed every scrimmage. He’s really gotten better, and he’s pushing Terry. What makes us better is when we have competition, so we need to continue to do that and continue to push ourselves throughout the summer.”


Article written by Jack Pilgrim

Follow me on Twitter: @JackPilgrimKSR

18 Comments for Gunnar Hoak doesn’t know what his future holds at Kentucky

  1. krautdog
    6:27 pm April 13, 2019 Permalink

    Best thing for this young man is to move on to greener pastures. He’s never been given a fair shot – couple minutes here 5 minutes there when the starter was hurt. Probably totally 30 minutes for his career. Shameful. Recruits better scrutinize this situation and be cognizant of a JC transfer screwing by your coaches.

    • dcforuk
      7:18 pm April 13, 2019 Permalink

      Obviously, neither you nor I know the conversations that went on and have gone on with coach and Gunnar. What I do know is that Coach stoops was hired to bring a winning football program the right way to Kentucky. I Think that one of the things coaches really must handle well is what he promises to players because that is a very fine line to walk. If promises were made to number 12, he would already have been gone IMO. It is a coach’s job to win but also to win the right way and turning a program around that is historically not a powerhouse football program requires many things including shoulder tapping junior college talent that can immediately come in and contribute. If number 12 leaves, I won’t blame him in the slightest. Nor, however do I blame stoops for doing what he thinks is best to bring wins to Kentucky……including JC xfers

    • UKinIN
      8:06 pm April 13, 2019 Permalink

      I love the fact that you’re being critical of UK for signing Wilson while advocating that Hoak transfer and take a spot from a player at another school.

    • dcforuk
      8:12 pm April 13, 2019 Permalink

      Hey UKinIN that’s a pretty good one. I wish I would have thought to use such wisdom!

    • UKinIN
      8:17 pm April 13, 2019 Permalink


    • CatfaninCinci
      9:27 pm April 13, 2019 Permalink

      Gunnar should do what Gunnar wants to do. I can understand UK coaches wanting Gunnar to stay (to help push Terry). It’s selfish of them, but their job isn’t to cater to Gunnar, it’s to put their team in a place to win. If they think that’s Terry, Gunnar shouldn’t stay if he wants to start. My bet is, the competitive spirit in Gunnar doesn’t want to play just to push the eventual starter, when that starter isn’t himself. UK is looking out for UK, Gunnar needs to look out for Gunnar. If he wants to play, there’s only one option because outside a Terry Wilson season ending injury, Gunnar Hoak won’t play here. Period.

    • CATandMONKEY
      8:24 am April 14, 2019 Permalink

      Dear sweet jeebus…
      “He’s never been given a fair shot.”

      He has been able to compete for the starting spot since day one.
      He had more time with the playbook, more time with the system than Terry or Stephen.

      Gunnar has skills. He seems a good dude.
      He should play- somewhere. I respect him as a player- the fans talking nonsense to support him based on false narratives- not so much.
      The most ridiculous statement of crazed #2QB Fans.

      If the coaches decided to go after a JC QB, It is only because
      They were NOT confident that the talent in the stable was capable of providing what the team needs.

    • dcforuk
      1:54 pm April 14, 2019 Permalink

      Don’t disagree CatfaninCincy

    • dcforuk
      1:57 pm April 14, 2019 Permalink

      Now deceased Jesuit priest Anthony DeMello referred to a “Proper Kind of Selfishness” in his book “Awareness”. It’s a tricky thing but I understand his point and your point

  2. notFromhere
    7:13 pm April 13, 2019 Permalink

    Best thing for him to do is not listen to uncompetitive people. ^^^

    He hasn’t been “screwed” because the team has brought in other people at his position. He’s just not won the starting job, yet.

    He DID play just about as well as Terry yesterday. Both missed some option reads. Both didnt see routes developing/receivers coming open at times. Both didnt place the ball well on a couple throws.

    Both played very well within the system and didnt let their play hurt the team.

    Gunnar has improved his throws while moving outside of the pocket (and keeping his head up/eyes downfield), which may be huge for the Cats this fall. The only question for me is whether his speed is enough to keep the chains moving when the routes and options are covered. He made a GREAT play on the TD throw to Oliver, who also made a great play happen with his feet. Real heads up decision and staying behind the LOS.

    Terry made some plays, but still needs to lead the receivers better on some throws. His game will improve if the Cats have enough consistent quality depth on D to go uptempo on offense (which they may actually have now). I think they may have Wilson setting too deep on some of the play action and need to work on both QB’s foot speed in their drops and the run game.

    We’ll see what happens. I wish Gunnar’d stay, because he looks quite a bit more comfortable in the offense, and odds are it’s not likely Terry will stay healthy all the way through a second straight year. He’s learned and earned here, and has the same right to leave as any coach or transfer.

    If he does leave I hope he has more class about it than some who have done it before him. I’d like to root for him wherever he goes.

  3. chardun20
    7:57 pm April 13, 2019 Permalink

    Gunnar has 2 years of football left, he red shirted his first year. It would be nice if Gunnar stayed, but I understand if he leaves. To me, Gunnar lack arm strength is the difference in him having real shot to be the starter.

    • notFromhere
      12:32 pm April 14, 2019 Permalink

      I dont think he lacks any arm strength. He was among the strongest, if not THE strongest arm out there at practice 1-2 years ago. I think he is focusing less on gunning it in there and more on touch.

  4. tdub
    8:45 pm April 13, 2019 Permalink

    I understand if he leaves but I definitely hope he stays. One play away from playing time if Wilson gets hurt.

    • CatfaninCinci
      9:44 pm April 13, 2019 Permalink

      He was one play away all year last year too

  5. Blue Bill
    12:35 am April 14, 2019 Permalink

    Funny. If a coach is “fair” and doesn’t find and play the best players that best help his team win…. he’s fired in a second, and you, me and everyone else is talking about how stupid he is. But he finds and plays the better player and people still bitch that he hasn’t been “fair”. (After watching them side by side in practice everyday for two years).

  6. zoupman
    2:15 am April 14, 2019 Permalink

    Gunnar, please stay. Sorry you were never given a fair chance. Remember one play away.

    • notFromhere
      12:33 pm April 14, 2019 Permalink

      Quit you bullsht. If he wasnt given a fair chance, he would have transferred already.