Once Mark Stoops addressed the real-life issues around his football team, he called back in to Kentucky Sports Radio to talk football.
Stoops began by breaking down each position group, briefly, as guided throughout the conversation. For those who have not heard the interview, I’ll share with you some of his best quotes for each group and then you can listen to the entire thing at the bottom.
We’ll start where he started with the QBs. They’re in good hands.
“I know our fanbase will be happy to know we’re in good hands at the quarterback position,” Stoops said, “going through what we went through a year ago. It doesn’t happen very often when you go through that type of injury at any one position, but we’re in good hands.”
As for Terry Wilson, Stoops said, “It’s so good to see him out there. He looks so comfortable. If you went back a year ago, Matt, to the preseason and we were talking about Terry, you would have heard me talking about how hard we’d been working, how hard he’s been working, understanding the offense, was going to be a much better player and the was evident in camp and that was evident in the two games he got to play in.”
Stoops also agreed with the Cam Newton comparisons for Joey Gatewood, at least in their size and playing style.
Now for the running backs, Stoops says he has so many good ones that he can’t even get a good look at Travis Tisdale and Jutahn McClain, who are buried on the depth chart behind experienced and proven options.
“Josh Ali, Clevan (Thomas), Bryce (Oliver), they all have been standing out in camp, they really have,” Stoops said. “And Michael Drennen is going to bring us some things, he’s really talented. I really feel like it’s time for those guys to break out. I feel good about the whole group.”
The Big Blue Wall doesn’t break down so it needs no breakdown, but Stoops said of his best group, “They’re blocking the heck out of us, to be honest with ya. And we have a good defense… Those guys are really good players, they’re confident in their experience, and they work hard. That’s a great combination.”
He also had great things to say about the reserves.
When asked about his front seven on defense, Stoops said, “I feel very strong there. We need to continue to build some depth at the inside linebacker position with what happened to Chris Oats… but the front seven is really strong.”
He confirmed Josh Paschal’s move inside, saying, “You’re finally going to see him inside, that I believe is his most natural position, and he’s carrying his weight so well and so explosive… He’s a dynamic player.”
The secondary is the best he’s had.
“We’re way deeper there than we’ve ever been. We really feel like we have quite a few bodies in there, both at corner and at safety.”
“I’ll take Max (Duffy) as long as he wants to stay here.”
You can hear Stoops’ entire position-by-position breakdown to start the second hour of today’s podcast. Be sure to listen because there’s much more to learn about the roster: