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Mark Stoops: “There’s so much more that this team can do.”

The dust has finally settled after Kentucky’s streak-snapping victory over No. 25 Florida at The Swamp.  Mark Stoops is proud of the way his team played, but they are far from a finished product.

“What I’m most proud of in the game was just the way we did it,” Stoops said at Monday’s press conference.  “Just being methodical, tough and hard-nosed, handling adversity and taking care of the game one play at a time.  Opportunities came and we made big plays.”

There are a few individuals who played exceptionally well.  Benny Snell rushed for 175 yards, Terry Wilson had three total touchdowns, Kash Daniel had 11 tackles and two Wildcats, Josh Allen and Bunchy Stallings, earned SEC Player of the Week honors.

It was truly a group effort, a great team victory.  We really played strong in all three phases.  In particular, I thought we were very physical upfront, both on the offense line and the defense line.  I also thought, obviously Benny had a huge game.  [He] Got some very tough yards.  That’s a team effort.  Receivers did a phenomenal job blocking on the perimeter, our O-line was physical and the tight ends really did their job as well. Then we created some big play opportunities in the pass game.”

On the other side of the line of scrimmage, Stoops was pleased to see the defensive line rise to the occasion without starting nose guard Quinton Bohanna.

“Defensively, it started with our D-line playing a very good game.  They were very strong at the point of attack.  I thought the big difference was our corners.  I felt like going into the game that that would be a match-up we would have to win.  We really covered extremely well on the perimeter.  We did did some very good things, but there’s so much more that this team can do.  We can play better than what we did and that’s our goal.”

For the first time in 31 years, Kentucky beat Florida.  The coaches, players and fans relished the moment, but it cannot linger for long.  Kentucky won while not playing their best football.  To reach their potential, they cannot focus on the opponent, only themselves.

“It was a long time coming for our fans and our players,” he said.  “It’s all gratifying and we appreciate it.  I did get back to all 250 people (who congratulated him via text), but then it’s time to put it behind you and worry about the present and what we’re going to do today to put ourselves in a position to win and improve our football team.  It was a fun 24 hours, but it’s time to move on.”


Article written by Nick Roush

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

13 Comments for Mark Stoops: “There’s so much more that this team can do.”

    1:44 pm September 10, 2018 Permalink

    I am thrilled that we won! We looked like the better team and even overcame several bad calls to pull it off. I am very proud of our players, but I’m not drinking the Kool Aid on our coaching staff just yet. Remember the 5-0 start that lead to a mid-season contract extension for Stoops? Remember the hype? Remember the second half of that season? There are a lot of games left.

    • secrick
      1:55 pm September 10, 2018 Permalink

      The kool aid is gone at my house. Bowl game last year and you can tell by looking at the players how much better job of recruiting he has done. If you aren’t happy with this coaching staff please tell me who you would like to have as head coach.

    • Jiminy Crickets
      2:36 pm September 10, 2018 Permalink

      I think he’s happy, he just remembers “we’re just getting started bro” after a big win over USC only to lose last 6 games, or last year, where we lost 4 of last 5 and blown out in two of those. Great, game, great win, but don’t act like he’s a bad fan for not jumping on the wagon just yet

    • secrick
      2:51 pm September 10, 2018 Permalink

      No he has his opinion just like i do. I was asking a question of who you would want to coach Ky. and Saban is not coming. I’m sure he is a great fan. WHOOOOOOOO.

    • UoKFB PHAN
      10:27 pm September 10, 2018 Permalink

      I’m cautiously optimistic. Yes, we all remember the late season breakdowns but I think this year might be different because of the improvement on the D-line. Things could turn south if Wilson doesn’t continue to develop but I think Hinshaw and Gran can work him through the growing pains. The Miss State game should give us a better feel for how good this team really is.

  2. jaws2
    2:09 pm September 10, 2018 Permalink


    • ukkatzfan
      3:04 pm September 10, 2018 Permalink

      Why Saban? I feel the qb controversy is the beginning of the end for bama. Stoops is better for us…..IMO

    • jaws2
      3:38 pm September 10, 2018 Permalink

      Yeah sure, right after he wins ANOTHER SEC and national title! Downfall, seriously?

  3. catsarerunnin
    2:33 pm September 10, 2018 Permalink

    This was a great win just to end “The Streak” and anytime Ky can get a SEC win on the road it’s huge. But the Gators are really down. Not downplaying the significance of the win but I’m not sure it’s a sign Stoops has turned the corner.

      3:29 pm September 10, 2018 Permalink

      Same goes for the 2 recent wins over UT, and even our current run against SC. Until UK actually breaks through to that upper tier in the SEC (which will likely never happen), this is as good as it will get, IMO. Stoops is on the verge of getting UK football back to where it was in the late Rich Brooks era. If he can maintain that level, I don’t think it’s rational to expect anything else. There really have never been any schools to have a top-5 BB AND FB programs that regularly wins or competes for titles, at least on a consistent basis. Florida was the last, in the late 90’s, and look how far both…especially FB…fell off after their run.

    • UoKFB PHAN
      10:17 pm September 10, 2018 Permalink

      @KYFan4Lyfe – Could you please explain in terms of W&Ls what you mean by ‘as good as it will get’? I think the Cats can and will be better than 7 – 5 every year but I want to understand your take.

      9:30 am September 11, 2018 Permalink

      @ UoKFB PHAN, just the quality of the wins, and overall outlook of the program. In other words, like I said, UK FB won’t break through to that upper echelon…at least not on with any sort of consistency. I think we could have a breakout year, like we’ve seen Miss. St., SC, Ole Miss, etc. have in previous years (though the last 2 times we’ve cracked the Top 25 turned out to be bad omens for the rest of the season), to think we’d ever be competing with the likes of Bama, Auburn, Georgia, etc. on a regular basis would be foolish.
      You really have to look at the quality of the SEC wins we’ve had over the last 20+ years (only a few over ranked opponents), combined with the really bad losses we’ve had, and you can extrapolate from that an honest assessment of what has actually been accomplished. The Joke(r) era certainly set the program back several years, and caused Stoops to have to start from ground zero like Brooks did, but I think that really only delayed us a few years getting to the current state, which is still a bit behind where Brooks left it (meaning he had similar records, but actually won 3 of 4 bowl games).

      Hope that clarifies my original post, LOL.

  4. Duuuuuude
    3:57 pm September 10, 2018 Permalink

    So glad we ignored all the panicy fans who were wanting UK to bring in Petrino. I am so much happier winning the way we are winning. Stoops is a class guy and is not going to leave us out to dry the way Petrino eventually would.