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Stoops anxious to see how Stephen Johnson bounces back

Mark Zerof | USA Today

Mark Zerof | USA Today

Mark Zerof | USA Today

On today’s SEC coaches teleconference, Mark Stoops was asked about Stephen Johnson, his fumble-prone starting quarterback, who has more fumbles than anyone in the Southeastern Conference and ranks second in that category nationwide.

Coach Stoops said, “I think Stephen’s very resilient. I knew he was when we recruited him. He has great poise. But that doesn’t mean that he can’t be affected because certainly great defenses in hostile environments have a tendency to affect all quarterbacks for the most part. So, I think how he responds, how he bounces back this week, will be a big indicator for him as he moves forward. I’m anxious to see it.”

Stoops also said he is very confident Johnson will respond with adversity and that the first-year Wildcat put his three-fumble game in Tuscaloosa behind him. Stoops believes the offense will get back to playing good football, as it has done at times in 2016.

This is a game where a turnover here or a turnover there will likely make the difference in the outcome.

Article written by Drew Franklin

I can recite every line from Forrest Gump, blindfolded. Follow me on Twitter: @DrewFranklinKSR

14 Comments for Stoops anxious to see how Stephen Johnson bounces back

  1. Sentient Third Eye
    3:31 pm October 5, 2016 Permalink

    I have confidence in Johnson. His fumbles were not due to panicking, as many QBs do. They were due to poor technique securing the ball, probably because against lesser competition at his previous schools, he was able to get by with some lazy ball-security habits. That can be fixed, and hopefully it has been.

    • inside info2
      3:38 pm October 5, 2016 Permalink

      I was going to say pretty much the same thing.

      He is very intelligent and has overcome a lot in his life. He seems to listen and respond well. I don’t think this will be a problem going forward.

    • az1006
      3:58 pm October 5, 2016 Permalink

      I would agree…And he has a propensity (as many younger quarterbacks do) to try to make something out of nothing. One of the toughest things for quarterbacks to learn (or any player in any sport, really) is that sometimes you just have to cut your losses and move on. It sucks taking a sack, or throwing the ball away because you’re wasting a play, so to speak. But wasting a play, living to fight another down, is far better than a turnover any day of the week. As has already been said, coming from the JUCO ranks, he was able to get away with that stuff before. He can’t anymore. Maybe he’s figuring that out now.

      Luckily it hasn’t really cost us to this point. Hopefully he’ll get it fixed before it does.

    • secrick
      4:01 pm October 5, 2016 Permalink

      Don’t you think the coaching staff should have already addressed that problem before the season started.Sentient Third Eye i hope you are right on this one and he plays great Sat.and would like to see him run with the ball for some first downs. Go Cats go Johnson

    • bigbluefred
      4:56 pm October 5, 2016 Permalink

      @secrick QB’s don’t take hits in practice which is to say, until he fumbled in the last few games the coaching staff didn’t know it would be an issue. Seems like a kid who doesn’t have the physical gifts of a star, but the intellect to lead this team very well if we just give him time to iron out the wrinkles.

    • Beavis
      5:27 pm October 5, 2016 Permalink

      Big blue fred, So you are saying the coaches did not notice his ball security issues in practice. Bet every other coach we play noticed his ball handling problems watching film.

  2. az1006
    4:07 pm October 5, 2016 Permalink

    You could argue the coaches could have fixed it, but it’s a much bigger difference between practice reps with the 2’s and live-game action, regardless of the opponent. QB’s wear red jerseys, so there isn’t any contact in practice. Simulating the kind of pressure and speed seen in live-game action is next to impossible in practice. So, really, he’s had a trial by fire. I think, overall, he’s exceeded expectations. Obviously has to do a better job of protecting the football, but that is something that can be fixed with a little extra attention.

    • secrick
      4:10 pm October 5, 2016 Permalink

      You are right about that . Thanks for clearing that up for me.

    • J-Dub421
      4:31 pm October 5, 2016 Permalink

      Plus it’s very difficult to break bad habits, and doing so can take time.

  3. Mathlete
    4:17 pm October 5, 2016 Permalink

    My favorite thing about Johnson so far is his ability to fix, learn from, and then move on from mistakes. That will serve him well on and off the field

  4. leon singleton
    5:03 pm October 5, 2016 Permalink

    Kentucky players need to do a better job of recovering his fumbles.

  5. Kat 308
    5:08 pm October 5, 2016 Permalink

    I pretty much agree with everybody and will go a step further I believe UK needs a scrambling QB to be successful. His intelligence and attitude are a + as well.

  6. Patches
    5:45 pm October 5, 2016 Permalink

    I like the look that Johnson has and the poise he has shown. I personally feel that Gran tried too hard to make him a pocket QB against Bama when he is best when moving and can break off a run when threatened. I think this week we will see a huge difference in his play.

    • KYcats11
      6:59 pm October 5, 2016 Permalink

      Agree, but I think gran was trying to prevent him from running the ball to avoid a big hit in the open field and possiblyou have him injured.