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Mark Stoops says he is ready to “work in” Lynn Bowden at quarterback

Mark Stoops has confirmed that the team will be trying out Lynn Bowden at the quarterback position.

This evening on his weekly radio show, the Kentucky head coach announced he would “continue to work [Bowden] in at quarterback” starting tomorrow when the Wildcats get back on the practice field.

“I think it’s no secret we’re going to continue to work Lynn in at quarterback, and then Walker Wood. We’ll use both of them out there [during practice],” Stoops said. “Everything is in play. We’ll see, it’s hard to see how this week is going to go. We’ll get those guys ready. A lot of talk has been out there about our quarterbacks, but Lynn gave us the best option. He gave us a great two or three weeks at the position [in practice].”

According to Stoops, starting quarterback Sawyer Smith is currently battling three injuries, and the goal is for the Troy graduate transfer to sit out all week at practice to allow time to heal.

“[Smith] is beat up, but he will recover,” he said. “Hopefully this week, we will have to rest him all week. I would anticipate resting him all week, that’s the plan anyway. Maybe he starts feeling better, but he’s got two injuries, actually a third one came up. Hopefully he’s looking better.”

In terms of Stoops’ decision to keep Smith late in the game, the Kentucky head coach was quick to admit that he likely should have pulled the injured quarterback a few series earlier than he did in the fourth quarter.

“[His injuries] just need time, it can get aggravated during the game,” he said. “With use, things like that. I didn’t think it would be anything long term or he wouldn’t have been in there, our doctors and trainers do a great job and wouldn’t put him in that position. In hindsight, I would have pulled him a few series early. We were just waiting to put a drive together, but he was definitely banged up.”

Moving forward, Stoops says Smith will need to be honest with the coaching staff with his health and whether or not he can truly be effective on the field. If he can’t, Bowden will take over first-team reps and start against Arkansas.

“Definitely, yeah. We have to be cognizant about that,” Stoops said. “He needs to be honest about that, whether or not he’s going to be effective. If he’s not 100% or close to that, he needs to tell us that. We’ll have a package this week that will work specifically for Lynn and Walker. Even if Sawyer is healthy enough to practice next Monday, we have to be ready for Lynn.”

If Bowden starts in two weeks against Arkansas, Stoops said he will not have to hold back in terms of the offensive playbook. The Kentucky believes his star receiver has a firm grasp of the playbook and can run the offense in its entirety.

“We’ll run our entire offense, his vision is so impressive,” he said. “Dropback and RPO-wise. It also helps to have an athletic guy back there, you can’ just tee off and rush. It helps when we have struggles on the offensive line like we’re having now. You have to be disciplined in your rush lanes when you have Terry back there, he can get around you and beat you in a hurry.”

Stoops compared Bowden’s effectiveness in the backfield to some running quarterbacks in the NFL and how difficult they have been making life for elite defenses.

“You can tell just by watching that game. When he went in there, the pass rush was different,” Stoops said. “They had to be more disciplined in their rush defense. They had to be more disciplined, so it wasn’t as effective. You can watch that in the NFL right now, some of the very elusive guys, the defense has to be more disciplined. They’re also in a predicament because they have to decide whether they’re going to go man or zone. If you go zone, Lynn can nickel and dime you, and then pull it down and run it if need be.”

On Bowden’s drive, which ended up being Kentucky’s lone touchdown drive against South Carolina, the star receiver’s scramble from the 28-yard line down to the two was a phenomenal example of that.

Should he start against Arkansas, Bowden certainly sounds up for the challenge, posting an image of him throwing the ball on Saturday against South Carolina with the caption “Flashbacks.”

As a senior in high school, Bowden threw for 1,366 total yards and rushed for 2,277 yards, accounting for 57 total touchdowns.

As a quick refresher, check out his senior highlights, where he served as Warren G. Harding High School’s primary quarterback option:

QB1?

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Article written by Jack Pilgrim

Follow me on Twitter: @JackPilgrimKSR

68 Comments for Mark Stoops says he is ready to “work in” Lynn Bowden at quarterback



  1. DelrayCat
    6:44 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

    This reeks of desperation. It reminds me of what coaches do when they think they are about to get fired….listen to fans regarding coaching. Bad look Mark.



    • bacnine
      6:50 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      Quick thinking as always Mark! Too bad you did not think of that last week when you knew Sawyer was already hurt. I guess that is why he gets the big money. Is it time for another contract extension and $500K raise?



    • shelby3605
      7:21 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      Bacnine: read between the lines; stoops hints that sawyer wasn’t honest about being good to go.



    • shelby3605
      7:02 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      Delraycat-wth u talking about. Lynn appears to be the best option if sawyer can’t go.



    • AlwaysTrueBlue
      7:24 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      Delay, desparation. U r obviously a young cat. Never lived thru the true pain. SC was horrible and we obviously don’t have a QB. U can’t play this game without a QB. Terry is not coach, lorenzen, or Woodson or maybe even Cobb but he had a better record than any of them. Bowden is the option. I want to see Gran dial up Bowden and Woods or Smith in the backfield together! That could produce interesting schemes.



    • bacnine
      7:29 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      shelby3605, I call BS. Stoops or his lackey Gran should have known in practice that he was not up to par.



    • 4everUKblue
      7:37 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      bacnine I was worried there would be a thread where you wouldn’t repost the Stoops extension $500K raise. You should work on some new material little buddy.



    • zoupman
      9:14 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      Sawyer was hurt in last two games. Should have been pulled in both games. Playing a QB hurt is short sighted.



    • wildcat444
      7:24 am October 1, 2019 Permalink

      Have followed the Cats since 1969. Many on this board must not be old enough to remember all the years of mediocre or bad teams. Ridiculous how Stoops and Gran are being bashed . 10-3 year just a year ago . He’s the the best thing to happen to U.K. football When he got to U.K. there were only Two 4 star players on the team. Critizing the Choice of Lynn Bowden at QB?You have to be kidding. He was the number one player in Ohio in high school and played quarterback! He should play QB the rest of the year. Only chance Cats have



  2. tgoff
    6:46 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

    So explain to me why this is the choice if Walker Wood is the backup QB. He should be getting the reps and our #1 WR should stay at his most experienced position since he’s been at the college level. No wonder why we question these coaches!



    • cats646
      7:57 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      Walker is not the back up. He is the fourth string! And he isn’t able to throw the ball due to surgery. Soooo….. Bowden, you up!



    • Jesus H. Chrysler
      8:19 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      This ^…it’s the SEC. U better have depth across the board to compete. Next man up should be the QB, 2nd, 3rd, 4th string, not WR. It’s Walker Wood then Mani. Let’s go all in with ur actual QBs. Stoops has gotten caught w his khakis down by not coaching up & developing his QB room.

      SEC defenses will crush us in the box and dare us to throw.



    • Carterbbn10
      9:04 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      Bowden can play qb. You can be the best receiver to ever play the game but if you don’t have someone that can get the ball to you then you are just a waste of talent.



    • maximumscott
      10:08 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      We are gonna get crushed with Wood… dude is our 4th string Qb and u arguing put him in over Bowden?!?!? Haha geeze



    • wildcat444
      7:27 am October 1, 2019 Permalink

      You seriously believe we have a better chance with WalkerWood at quarterback than Lynn Bowden?



  3. msnthrop
    6:48 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

    Mark Stoops – Ready to spend some MONEY!



    • KATastrophe
      11:42 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      Uh oh…the Heaven Hill is really gug-gug-gugglin’ down the spout this evening. Ok, Barnhart. It’s time to give Stoops another $500 K raise before UT, Vandy, or SC snap him up…



  4. wildcats8
    6:57 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

    The players have lost faith in smith get anyone in there. People can say he’s not running his routes but that’s because he’s got a bum at QB with a QBR of 3.8



    • 4everUKblue
      7:05 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      You’re exactly right wildcats, Smith threw a few good passes in the Florida game but he has been awful since then. People forget all the big plays Bowden has made, he was one of few making plays last Saturday.



    • 4everUKblue
      7:07 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      Personally I’d rather see him at WR than QB, I don’t think that is the answer.



    • bacnine
      7:32 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      4everUKblue, Did you ever figure out the difference between a kicker and a punter was?. Let me know if i need to explain to you.



    • 4everUKblue
      7:35 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      Bacnine I know the difference. Funny I haven’t see you post the Stoops extension $500k raise comment in about 8 hours. Is that all l you got Scooter?



    • 4everUKblue
      7:41 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      Bacnine I would bet I’ve been watching UK football longer than you’ve been alive and if I need you to explain anything to me it’s how you can comment while working at Hardee’s.



    • bacnine
      7:43 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      4everUKblue, Well, obviously you don’t read very well. And big buddy you do not know the difference as you said we have a good kicker. I will be glad to explain the difference if you would like.



    • bacnine
      7:49 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      4everUKblue, Barney, are you the posting deputy sheriff. I am so glad you monitor my posts ole man. do you have any thoughts of your own? All I see you say is “I agree” and “you are right”. BTW, Barney Fife, I love those Hardees biscuits.



    • bacnine
      7:56 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      4everUKblue, Hey Barney. Does Sheriff Andy let you go to the games or you have to watch them from jail? Did I mention that I love those Hardee’s biscuits? I can get you some if you want.



    • bacnine
      8:23 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      4everUKblue, Barney, where did you go ole man? If you are near the Prestonsburg Hardee’s come on by and I will bake you some of our biscuits. We are open till 11:00.



    • KATastrophe
      11:30 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      “he’s got a bum at QB”

      Uh oh–the crack pipes are out early this evening.

      SS looked pretty decent till he got hurt. Then he got hurt, and hurt, and hurt again. The kid put his ass back out on the line for the team and played injured. Why don’t you give him a break instead of calling someone’s teenaged kid a “bum”? If anything, the fact that he was sent back out to play hurt is due to a bum coaching decision–not him. I, too, think LB is a heckuva talent as well. So I guess we’ll simply play him at QB, WR, and hell, at nose guard too, while we’re at it, seeing as KD and crew are goin’ south faster than a she dog sucklin’ fifteen pups. I say we let LB play both ways, offense / defense, like we all did back in high school at single “A” level. He’s got the talent to do it all.



    • wildcat444
      7:29 am October 1, 2019 Permalink

      Have followed the Cats since 1969. Many on this board must not be old enough to remember all the years of mediocre or bad teams. Ridiculous how Stoops and Gran are being bashed . 10-3 year just a year ago . He’s the the best thing to happen to U.K. football When he got to U.K. there were only Two 4 star players on the team. Critizing the Choice of Lynn Bowden at QB?You have to be kidding. He was the number one player in Ohio in high school and played quarterback! He should play QB the rest of the year. Only chance Cats have



  5. Redman1423
    7:14 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

    If everyone who is talking crap about sawyer even when he is hurt just got hurt one day and couldn’t perform their job the same way, and were told by their peers they are doing a trash job how do you think they’d feel? Y’all really need to shut your mouths when it comes to trash talking a injured college quarterback who put us in position to beat Florida many many times during that game. Jump out you trolls and shut your mouths. Leave it to people who have played sports and played them injured to do all the talking right now. You are all pathetic slobs. What a disgrace to have on this website, and what a disgrace to ever have you all wear the same color blue I do. Switch to Red or shut up



    • 4everUKblue
      7:18 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      You’re right, but he also put us in position to have to have to come back against Florida with the fumble and to interceptions when he was not hurt. But you’re right about trash talking any of our players, it is a bad look for BBN.



    • bacnine
      8:47 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      4everUKblue, yea your right



    • wildcat444
      7:30 am October 1, 2019 Permalink

      If yoSo



  6. BlueByYou
    7:15 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

    If he’s at WR, he won’t get the ball. He mat as well start with it in his hands



    • 4everUKblue
      7:16 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      That’s a valid point.



    • AlwaysTrueBlue
      7:29 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      Blue by u, if Lynn can throw the ball at all on the run I would be terrified as a defensive coordinator!



    • bacnine
      8:48 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      4everUKblue, thats a valid point



    • cats646
      9:00 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      Dude, bacnine. The only idea you’ve ever posted on this site is how you’re upset we gave stoops a raise for turning our program around. You’re a fukin moron. Quit riding 4ever’s dick and go find out how to get a real job instead of baking biscuits at Hardee’s.



    • cats646
      9:24 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      Lol bacnine is scared to argue with me.



    • bacnine
      9:39 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      Cats 646,
      Are you his Daddy? You must be Sheriff Andy. I’m shaking in my boots. Yes, that is the only idea I have. Oh, I do have one other thought. I bet you did not know that you could read minds. Guess what I am thinking Einstein? Come on up to Prestonsburg. I got some biscuits for you Daddy of 4everUKblue.



    • cats646
      9:50 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      Youre probably thinking about all the bad choices you’ve made in your life that led you to work at Hardee’s and so pissy toward someone on the internet for absolutely no reason at all.



    • cats646
      9:55 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      Oh and btw, I did know I could read minds. Been doing it for years. It’s sort of a hobby of mine.



    • bacnine
      10:04 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      Cats646, So Sheriff Andy. Where is your boy Barney? Cat got his tongue. So you belittle me because I work at Hardee’s.



    • bacnine
      10:06 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      Cats646, BTW, I would find another hobby your good at. Because your not very good at it.



    • cats646
      10:13 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      I’m not belittling you brother. I just love arguing and you wouldn’t shut the fuk up about making those biscuits. And I beg your damn pardon? I bet I read minds better than you make biscuits. Lol



    • wildcat444
      7:38 am October 1, 2019 Permalink

      If Bowden stays at WR. who is going to accurately throw the ball to him? Waste of talent at this point Play him at WB . Dual threat QB will open up the offensive line and cause problems for opposing defense . Need more speed at QB position



  7. Heavy C
    7:25 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

    Desperation? Either Smith is injured or just sucks. And considering how well he threw the ball prior to the injury..It sure seems like the later. Either way….What harm will it do to try ANYTHING else? He cant throw the ball to anyone.



  8. Heavy C
    7:28 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

    On another note, I heard just a bit of the show tonight in my way home. Coach said there were “Lots Of Positives” from Saturday’s game. Really? I’d be curious as to what his perception of those were.



  9. Redman1423
    7:50 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

    Coach just talks half the time. I’m starting to think that his recent success was truly built on the backs of great players. I’ve always felt that he let some of his teams down with bad decision making I.e. running not enough clock off in ole miss game, not running enough off in the Tennessee game the same year I believe, the countless times he goes into half with time outs left and good field position without trying to score, sitting Kash Daniel who is this teams only leader to eventually find out he didn’t have to and which ultimately led us to having a horrible defensive game, playing sawyer with multiple injuries, and just to cap it off are the countless times he’s choked down the offense to just running the ball to preserve a 10 point lead. He needs to be kept in check somehow



    • mashburnfan1
      8:48 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      Kash is probably our 5th r 6th best LB talent wise, maybe lower. Don’t know why but he looks slower this season. Maybe Josh Allen made him a better player by doing so much but Kash has not been good this year. Love his heart, his intensity but tired of his jaw jackin prior to games, not a good look trying to hurt another player and even worse to come out and LIE about it. That is not a leader.



    • lex cath
      10:12 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      What a clown statement, obviously you are new. He beat out 3 other LB’s as a true freshman which all transferred or left football all together. You’ve been on a Oats crusade forever, I didn’t know we had 5 or 6 other mike LBs. Having a replicant Chris Westry at Mike you’ll see real quick he’s in no way possible or even remotely a LB



    • Redman1423
      1:48 pm October 1, 2019 Permalink

      Mashburn please get off of this thread or any other thread on this website. You are ridiculous and are nothing but a scumbag troll. I’m sorry but Kash is by far our best LB and I agree he looks different this year but the coaches made him lose weight for whatever reason. He should be at 250 like last year. He is without a doubt the only leader either side of the ball has and stoops decided to bench him as if it would change the fact that he tried to hurt someone. Instead of making him run at practice or some other punishment he punished him in a way that ultimately hurt the team. I’m sorry but stoops messed up bad yet again



  10. UK triplelegacy
    8:58 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

    If Bowden is as talented a QB as SJ or TW, which he probably is as good or better, let’s make a commitment to make him the primary QB and build the offense game plan with Bowden over this two weeks of transition. The team will probably rally behind Lynn and become reenergized. Need about four receivers to step it up.



    • Carterbbn10
      9:12 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      I agree. I think it’s the best option right now. He’s the most talented player on the team by far so why not see what he can do.



    • KATastrophe
      12:32 am October 1, 2019 Permalink

      “If Bowden is as talented a QB as SJ or TW, which he probably is as good or better, let’s make a commitment to make him the primary QB and build the offense game plan with Bowden over this two weeks of transition.”

      Yep–das ist richtig, UK Tripleleg. But no ass-wavering around and trying to alternate him between QB and WR with Wood or SS in as part-time QB or something. Go the rest of the season with LB if you start him up back there or not at all. To stop and revert back to SS again would really suck the rest of the DNA out of the team for good, not to mention the rest of us…



  11. livingood4UK
    9:42 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

    The ONLY player this offense is going to rally behind is Lynn Bowden. And for the people saying stuff about stoops you all forget that Kentucky was his first head coaching job and this is Kentucky’s best head coach. Stoops and thus program have learned to win together but apparently some of the fans have a lot more to learn. With winning comes losing. Without one there isn’t the other. Stoops will right the ship and make you all eat crow. This is still a good, talented football team and I believe and love it’s coach.



    • cats646
      10:04 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

      Absolutely!



    • The Big Lebowski
      6:41 pm October 1, 2019 Permalink

      The fans saying that Stoops should go are air headed fools.

      This is Kentucky. This program needs generational change and Stoops is making that happen.



  12. BluKudzu
    10:40 pm September 30, 2019 Permalink

    He turns this season around and gets this team the upper tier in the east, and win a bowl, then he has earned his money.

    If we finish at the bottom tier, fail to make a bowl, and keep getting humiliated, then it will be difficult for even the most ardent of supporters to think we are heading in the right direction.

    It is imperative Stoops shows his skills in the next game.

    Please don’t ever send just 9 guys into a game again. This has happened too often at this level, under Stoops.



  13. njcat54
    7:07 am October 1, 2019 Permalink

    Stoops has never been very quick on his feet. Nice guy, good recruiter, even a pretty good player developer – but he sucks at making in game adjustments. Bowden should have been the QB when Smith got hurt in the MSU game. And he should have run the ball rather than having an injured QB launching 40+ passes.



  14. kjd
    7:23 am October 1, 2019 Permalink

    Bowden is an option. He’s not the answer. He’s not a passer. Senior HS year: rushing doubled passing yds. Stoops says Bowden can nickel and dime you. So defenses continue to stack the box and double dawg dare you to throw. Offensive line and defensive struggles to boot, no winning season.
    To Coach Stoops: if you couldn’t see Smith wasn’t up to playing against SC, then you should resign. Absolutely, moronic comment.



  15. CombatMedic_98
    9:57 am October 1, 2019 Permalink

    YAhtzeeeee: JUST In…! Hoak has submitted his name to the TrAnsfer Portal…waiver requested to return to UK…OSU accepts immediate release back to UK…!



  16. jaws2
    4:06 pm October 1, 2019 Permalink

    I love UK football and Stoops and company have done a good job recruiting except at QB. Regardless, Stoops and company have been inept at in game coaching and now they’re either lying or inept at determining if a player is not ready to play due to an injury. Either way it’s an indictment of this staff. The AD got what he bargained for when he hired a first time head coach. His team is in year 5 and we still are pathetic at time management, play decision making, lack of halftime adjusting, and have had too many instances of not enough players on the field. I hate to feel this way but we’ll never see consistent 8+ wins a year with this staff.
    OH, and for what it’s worth I’ve decided Bowden should start at QB and just throw it to himself. That would have been more effective in the SC game than Smith trying to get it there.



  17. Wildcat homer
    5:42 pm October 1, 2019 Permalink

    Walker Wood must be a real liability



  18. The Big Lebowski
    6:35 pm October 1, 2019 Permalink

    I don’t care what has happened. I just want to see improvement.

    I want to see this damned team finally beat Tennessee.



  19. The Big Lebowski
    6:39 pm October 1, 2019 Permalink

    I don’t get it.

    Kentucky just came off of a 10-3 year beating Penn State (PENN STATE NITTANY LIONS) in a major bowl game.

    People can’t give Stoops a break? WTF

    Kentucky doesn’t have the talent to reload year in and year out. Kentucky is not at the recruiting level where they can see 12 guys go to the NFL and simply take off again.

    This stuff takes time…especially in Football.

    I am 100% behind Stoops. He did it legit last year. No smoke and mirrors like Rich Brooks. Last year was legit. If Stoops can do what he did at Kentucky last year every three or four years, he’s a freakin miracle worker.

    Anyone who wants Stoops gone is a boneheaded fool who knows nothing.