In 2018 Mark Stoops received one accolade after another. A unanimous SEC Coach of the Year selection and National Coach of the Year according to College Football News, some would argue it wasn’t even his best coaching job.
Last fall Stoops had to replace a defensive coordinator, an entire secondary, record-breakers on each side of the ball and two quarterbacks. Adjusting on the fly with Lynn Bowden taking snaps, UK finished 8-5 with a win in the Belk Bowl.
Mark Stoops may not have earned the same recognition, but College Football News believes he deserved more credit for adapting to every obstacle thrown his way in 2019. Counting down the top coaching performances from last season, Stoops comes in at No. 10.
The guy lost his heart-and-soul guys – Benny Snell and Josh Allen – from the great 2018 team. He lost starting quarterback Terry Wilson almost right out of the gate, had to reconfigure things after having issues getting the offense going, and his team still rolled up an eight-win season with five wins in the last six games with a wide receiver playing quarterback as, effectively, a running back. His team overcame the in-season adversity and blew out rival Louisville, won the Belk Bowl over Virginia Tech.
The Kentucky football program has had a top ten head coach in all college football over the last two seasons. What a time to bleed blue.