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Maxwell Smith and Jalen Whitlow talk about what went wrong


Can you say “QB controversy”?

After the game, Maxwell Smith and Jalen Whitlow addressed reporters to talk about UK’s disappointing loss to Western and what it means about the starting spot going into next week. Whitlow finished with 78 yards off 10-15 passing, while Maxwell was 8-14 for 125 yards and one touchdown.

Why did Whitlow look so rattled early on? He said that “a lot of stuff just went out the window” due to nerves. When asked what he thinks he did to deserve the starting spot after tonight, he was at a loss for words: “I don’t know…I’m just trying to help the team.”

Maxwell Smith said it was tough to sit on the sidelines and watch his team struggle: “I was just waiting for my number to be called.” Even if he isn’t named the starter for next week, he knows he needs to step up and be a leader in the locker room. Smith said the team shares the fans’ frustrations over the loss:

“We’re all down. We’re all frustrated, but plain and simple, they were better than us today. They beat us in every aspect.”

Can’t argue with that.

Article written by Mrs. Tyler Thompson

No, I will not make you a sandwich, but you can follow me on Twitter @MrsTylerKSR or email me.

46 Comments for Maxwell Smith and Jalen Whitlow talk about what went wrong

  1. niaps
    12:35 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    WKU was ready plain and simple. I would have thought UK would be ready too but not even close. Veteran coaches verses rookie coaches. One team properly prepared one not. Poor QB pick with a guy who just cannot get it done there. Please put Max back and make Whitlow a receiver or running back anything but QB.

  2. Pete
    12:41 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    I think Whitlow would make a good WR because he has the speed and decent hands and that is one position that we need right now in order to run the offense we want to.

  3. ??
    12:43 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    I’ve wondered why whitslow was starting. Max was the best qb last yr before injury

    If he doesn’t start next week ill be questioning the coaches abilities

    Whitslow. Is a good practice kid but a choker in games

    He’s a joker recruit

  4. jpgott2
    12:45 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    Stoops can only do so much when the cupboard is bare! UK has an extremely young and thin secondary. WKU’s young QB look poised to make quick throws.

    My biggest face palming moments were due to the play of our atrocious O-Line! That unit could not have played any worse. Look for Max to get next weeks start, with an emphasis on the shotgun. When we spread out a team with Max’s arm, our dump-offs and running game will be more effective.

  5. Joker says
    1:01 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    At least I had the good sense to only play Randall Cobb in a wildcat package.

  6. BigBlueSexMachine
    1:13 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    Everything went out the window due to nerves? Man. That’s all I need to know. No big timer. Max, start warming up bro

  7. We talkin about practice
    1:21 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    You know why Whitlow looked good in practice? He was playing against our defense!!! Every QB will look great against what I saw tonight. Stoops will have to take over the D – his buddy isn’t ready just yet. He looked like a deer in headlights on the sideline. Oh well, November will be here soon.

  8. bobolopolis
    1:53 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    The secondary was toast in the first half because they were playing so far off the ball they were given the WKU receivers easy 8-10 yard receptions. They got a little better by the second half but the real problem of the game was our supposed “strength” of the defense.

    The D Line did nothing worth mentioning the entirety of the game. They got bullied by a Sunbelt team. When they go against a veteran o line in the SEC they are going to get destroyed.

    The linebackers were a close second. You can’t rely on Avery to make every tackle. Henderson played hard but was all over the place missing his gap assignments multiple times as was Brown.

    There is no contest on the QB situation imo, Maxwell Smith should start. Whitlow without a doubt is a better athlete, but the entirety of his duration on the field every aspect of the offense looked frenetic and discombobulated. He made plays because he is a helluva athlete, but I’ll take a guy who can consistently move the ball over the guy who might give you the homerun once out of a four series..

    As soon as Smith came in everyone seemed to settle down. O-line included. It sucks to find out that western looked to have been succeptible to the deep ball only after Max came in and threw bombs to guys who were behind the secondary. He missed one to a guy who he lead out of bounds, then had one defensed by nice play by the corner, but he also hit a guy in stride with a perfect pass for a TD, and came in cold off the bench in the 4th quarter.

    I don’t want to say things might’ve been different had WKU’s D had time to key on Smith, but it does make one wonder.

  9. We talkin about practice
    2:13 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    Mister Cobble needs to change his name to Mister Gobble. He looked like he had ate 684 turkey legs since last year. Western had fit, trim, athletic players and we had overweight, slow space eaters. I am so tired of watching bad football. I thought we would at least be better defensively but boy was I wrong.

  10. Donnie
    2:20 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    Liggins in jail for domestic abuse?????

  11. Donnie
    2:22 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    Say it ain’t so

  12. dizzy-drizzle
    2:25 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    has anything changed since last year..every time i watch kentucky its the same thing..dropped passes,missed tackles,bad throws,awful play calling,pitiful defense,im starting to think kentucky football has some sort of seems like it just doesnt get any im always watching the same game because we do the same thing every game..

  13. kingrex
    3:45 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    First of all a dual threat quarterback is almost never a good idea. It can be electrifying, but then at the end of the night more often than not, you have lost the game. I think the mere fact a dual threat quarterback with the ability to run means they are not as good at making their reads because in the back of their minds they do not have to pass the ball. They have the ability to tuck and run. Being out there on the field can be intense and it is always easier to tuck and run rather than be patient and make a play. I live in Atlanta and watched Vick cause the Falcons to under perform for years. He basically admitted he did not learn the offense or go through his reads as effectively as he could have because he always knew he could “just run it”. Smith is clearly the best quarterback on the team. We all knew this before the season started. Tonight was an embarrassment.

  14. Wildcatsteeler
    4:58 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    What went wrong at the QB spot? The coaches didn’t start the right guy. That’s what. Error ENTIRELY on the coaches shoulders. Smith was the obvious choice and I said it for weeks before. He fits the style, has more xp, poise, accuracy, confidence and leadership. Whitlow did exactly what I said and when there was the slightest pressure he ran. If a dumbass like me can sit at home and make this call that doesn’t say a lot for our coaching staff. Petrino schooled Stoops today. And WKU stomped UK today. It’s a 2-10 season without a doubt. Only thing in doubt is the 2 wins. I just pray it doesn’t scare any of the recruits off.

  15. Coaches were thinking too much
    7:32 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    The coaches overthought this one. Max should have been the long term QB. Where were the linebackers? Ouch more of the same from the same players. Our coaches did nothing to make Joker’s boys better. There is not one SEC player on our team from Jokers years.

  16. 3fan
    7:36 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    Both should transfer. Drew Barker will start as a true freshman next year

  17. UK Freshmen
    7:36 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    Just. Shut. Up. When you get your arse kicked you need to shut up. What is it about UK players in whatever sport that fells a need to comment about anything and everything?

  18. 3fan
    7:48 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    The big question is what the hell has happened to Towles??? Wasn’t be a 4 star? And he can’t even get on the field???

  19. Me too.
    7:52 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    All of you saying they should have started Max Smith have not seen Max Smith in practice. Max Smith in practice was HORRIBLE with all caps. Whitlow was much better and looked like he deserved the start.

    That said, it looks like Max Smith plays better in games than Whitlow. I agree with everyone that Max Smith needs to be our man, but to say that the coaching staff missed this one is just stupid.

    Wildcatsteeler: That is your problem…you are sitting at home and have no idea who should get the start. Yeah yeah yeah, you can say all you want, the fact is that Smith DOES NOT practice well. This new staff did what I would have done. Give the team to the person that practices the best, and that was Whitlow.

    You guys know almost nothing about football and want to crow about the coaches. ‘sigh’ I wish our fans were as smart about football as they are about basketball. That is partly the problem: Basketball does not translate onto the turf. Some of you guys are still in Rupp Arena.

  20. BravoBigBlue
    8:27 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    Results in the GAME are what matter. And the results were pretty embarrassing in most every aspect. It’s clear that Whitlow is not an effective QB. But hey, it was clear last year too. But he looked AWESOME in PRACTICE!!!! Yippeee! Give me a break.

  21. wtf
    8:47 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    UK should drop football. They suck and will always suck. STOOPpid sux and looked like jokers offense on the field!

  22. You are who you are
    8:56 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    Losing teams do NOT have qb controversies.

  23. JJ
    9:02 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    We have to question the judgment of Stoops & Brown for choosing to start Jalen Whitlow over Max Smith. Seriously, they couldn’t figure out Whitlow is not capable of passing from the pocket? Prevent defense or not from WKU, Smith clearly showed he can pass from collapsing pockets. Why were our coaches unable to figure that out in 9 months??? It is reasonable for fans to question the judgment of the coaching staff and whether they know what they’re doing. They did not look like an SEC coaching staff last night. They were clearly out coached by Petrino and looked like they don’t belong in the SEC.

  24. Kyreds
    9:11 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    Is it time for basketball yet????

  25. john cotton
    9:26 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    maybe these guys have been listening to matt jones telling people how good we were going to be(8-4 or maybe 7-5). wake up jones,just because you dont like petrino doesnt make him a bad coach, he sure made the great defense and offensive coaches we hired look sick. wake up and smell the coffee.

  26. [email protected]
    9:38 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    It will be a very long season. If there was another program that would finish last in the SEC, it would be Western and the 35-26 should have been more like 49-17 or something. WKU just dominated and controlled this game. But, you have to be patient and give Stoops a chance. FB doesn’t change over like BB. It takes 2-3 years in some cases before you see the needle move. The point is, they have nowhere to go but up because you simply can’t go much lower.

  27. Danny G
    9:41 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    It’s the first game with a new coaching staff and multiple new players. The coaches have said the entire summer that the team is a work in progress. WKU has a decent team. If they lost to Morehead that would be a different story. I hope to see the coaches use Whitlow more like a Randal Cobb type play maker. I like the QB’s we have. Go Cats!!

  28. JJ
    9:56 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    #25 & 26: New coaching staff and new players or not, the coaching staff should have learned that Max Smith is clearly the better QB for the Air Raid offense. I have to question whether Stoops & Brown know what they’re doing if they could not see that in the first 8-9 months. They seemed over their heads last night like Joker Phillips & Co. used to look.

    This coaching staff has to show me something now before I can get on board with their rebuilding efforts. Quite frankly, I now need to be convinced they know what they’re doing and are suited for the SEC.

  29. JJ
    10:10 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    No excuse for the team being unprepared and out of shape. Despite the poor defensive effort, the decision not to play Max Smith from the start determined the result.

  30. Axe Cop
    10:21 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    25. While Matt was a little bit overconfident in our chances against WKU, he never said this season would be 7-5 or 8-4, that is a straight-up lie.

  31. bung
    10:24 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    football without Smith and Towles is like basketball without the fast break…12 losses

  32. ag slater
    10:26 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    Pathetic. Laughing stock of football. Would have won the game if max played the whole time. I was telling everyone whitlow is trash. Those throws he was making made tim tebow look good. Another 2 win season. 0% chance of a bowl

  33. whatwasthat
    10:31 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    I was there, I was disappointed but I also realize what an awful job the Joke did. It will get better. Having said that, hey KSR jalen has never and I mean never outperformed Max Smith at quarback, not last season not in the spring game not at fan day, I was there what the was you watching.

  34. whatwasthat
    10:40 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    The drum beat for jalen being such a great quarterback just was by this website but that rag of a paper herald leader. Jalen should be a receiver at least and wildcat quarterback at most. We all know the overall talent level is down because of the joke.

  35. John bivens
    10:42 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    Why was it better to play this game in Nashville instead of Lexington?
    Western should be grateful to the UK AD for the help even if it was unneeded.

  36. KY CLAY
    10:49 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    Max as starter, Towles as #2 and move whitlow as a receiver or a back…. DAMN IM GOOD

  37. GoCats
    10:50 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    If you use more than one quarterback, it means you don’t have one–so really that’s all the discussion needed on the quarterback issue. We fans need to be committed to our coaches and players though; that was ugly that the fans started leaving early. We at home peeped that.

  38. KY CLAY
    10:50 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    and ZADARIUS!!!! WAKE UP… ever heard of that clowney kid at SC.. look up his film and COPY IT.. WE NEED THAT IN YOU!!!!

  39. Chris
    11:01 am September 1, 2013 Permalink

    Where was the D-line?? I have respect for the recruiting Stoops has done, but even he said the defense couldnt tackle right or take angles… Shouldnt the coaching staff have seen that the defense cant tackle or take an angle to try to make a tackle.. The players talent is not on stoops but the basics are!!!

  40. buddyblue62
    12:20 pm September 1, 2013 Permalink

    stupid people everybody is a coach.coaching staff is fine they dont have alot to work with at this time,just wait couple years you all will be saying hell yes, when we beat wku.i for one is so glad we have this coaching staff.GO CATS

  41. KD
    1:28 pm September 1, 2013 Permalink

    QB situation looks like last year. No Max, no offense!

  42. we talkin about practice
    1:33 pm September 1, 2013 Permalink

    Jalen Whitlow didn’t start at QB for his high school. None of you have mentioned that. He was a back-up in high school! But he can start for the Wildcats. That right there tells me all I need to know.

  43. edrnm
    1:34 pm September 1, 2013 Permalink

    Everyone needs to realize that in practice the offense and defense are playing against each other. It would make sense then that both lines would look good as would the receivers and QB,

  44. Jim 1
    1:35 pm September 1, 2013 Permalink

    Folks, are we expecting to much of coach Stoops in a very short time? The truth is coach Stoops and his staff are working with just a handful of new talent that he is trying to mesh with players coming out of a losing regime under the Joker. The facts are he has very little to work with, including qbs and most of the skilled positions.

    Untill Stoops can bring in better talent and coach them up to be winners, we must be patient. Like it or not it’s going to take time. Things will get better with the recruits he has coming. I wish it was now but that’s not facing reality.

  45. DavidC
    1:42 pm September 1, 2013 Permalink

    It should be clear to everyone that UK started the wrong QB. Whitlow admits to being overly nervous and Smith couldn’t wait for his number to be called. I have no problem playing two QB’s, but if Smith had started and UK had established an “AIR RAID” (What happened to the air raid????!!!) there could have been a different outcome.

  46. Former uk QB
    5:43 pm September 1, 2013 Permalink

    I understand “if” Jalen looked better in practice, but for the offense that Neal (who was a freshman when I was at UK) is going to run, I would have bet my income that Max was going to start. Glad I didn’t. “Fans” and true fans of Kentucky football need to settle down. If you UK had scheduled a Morehead or some small 1-AA school and we would have won, you would be praising Jalen. Thankfully we played a ligit team with a smart and established coach…and we and our coaches and players LEARNED a lot. We now embark forward with a good knowledge of what we need, who we need to play and how we need to play instead of a sugarcoated win that would have set us even further back. We all knew this was going to take time, after 3 hours (length of game) many of you, which I love your passion for UK to do well, are ready to turn on OUR team. There’s no doubt that this will be a rough year, especially when we have our schedule against numerous top 10 and 25 schools ahead. Calling for heads and throwing in the towel after 3 hours is way too dramatic. Look up the definition of “rebuild”, it takes time and especially will when our new coaches AND players are able to productively be able to depend on each other. This game was a learning experience that everyone needed. The coaches learned more about the players in GAME SITUATIONS and not practice, the players have a better feel for what the coaches are working hard to teach them and the fans learned that just because you have a new coach doesn’t mean all the problems are solved. We are not Alabama in which one loss is thr end of the world…hopefully we will be some day. PLEASE put down the axe and “I know all there is about football” mentality and try to see what really is happening, UK is rebuilding.

    Now, if it doesn’t happen during the Stoops era…then UK does what it has ALWAYS done, try again. For now, there’s 11 games left and we all know UK is not going to win a national championship, and SEC championship or even a divisional championship. What they can do is win the opportunity to improve and get better over this season. Recruits may or may not decommit, I doubt they will decommit bc they have faith in the coaches and the team. The coaches have faith in UK football as do the players…you all should too. God bless and Go CATS!