USA Today’s Paul Myerberg posted an interesting article this morning about first-year coaches and recruiting success, and not surprisingly, Mark Stoops was the main coach featured. Myerberg says that Stoops and other coaches are using “the first-year bump,” or the unblemished hope that comes with a coaching change, to offset the harsh reality of the rebuilding process when selling the program to recruits. The USA Today Sports team put some stats behind this theory, and concluded that first-year coaches’ recruiting success is better than their predecessors 70% of the time:
Myerberg says Stoops’ big challenge is changing UK’s reputation as the SEC cellar dweller:
For Stoops, it has involved altering how prospects view Kentucky’s program – and doing so from the start, not missing a beat in the cutthroat realm of SEC recruiting. Stoops has pitched Kentucky to regional prospects as a program on the rise, selling this positive vision along with the promise of success, accolades and early playing time.
“I think our coaches have worked very hard, and it’s been great support. I know it’s even surprised me how quickly at times we were able to get some of this done,” Stoops said. “We feel like we’ve got a great recruiting plan and we have great coaches in place to do that. But some of it has even come quicker than we anticipated.
“It’s not so much what’s gone on here in the past and all that. This is exactly what we’re going to do. This is our offensive identity, this is our defensive identity. Just spell out everything in great detail, exactly how we’re going to do things.”
More good stuff where that came from, so go check out the article in full: