Head Coach Mark Stoops was not pleased with his team’s focus and it showed in the two minutes that he spent speaking with the media following Wednesday afternoon’s practice.
Stoops opened the press conference expressing his disappointment “not real pleased, don’t really want to get into it, not pleased with our focus. Fortunately we have a few more days to get it right we’ll continue to grind on it and hopefully have better focus tomorrow.”
Stoops admitted there was a little bit of energy at practice but the discipline and focus needed to beat a team like Louisville was not present. Stoops clarified that his defense’s lack of attention to detail was most concerning.
Defensive Coordinator DJ Eliot shared the sentiments of Stoops. “I think we just didn’t have the focus or discipline that we needed to have a good practice today, too many guys not locked in, their mindset was not right.” Eliot was not surprised to see a practice like this so late in the year admitting “we’re still a very immature and young defense at times.”
Redshirt freshman outside linebacker Denzel Ware was not sure if not having class or the holidays contributed to the team’s disappointing practice but “not having everyone’s focus at this point in time is frustrating.”
Ware gave his respect to Lamar Jackson and Louisville but “at the end of the day I’m not focused on Lamar Jackson I’m focused on our team and what we have to do on Saturday.”
Ware acknowledged that Louisville has prevented the team from reaching a bowl game the past two years but “I don’t really think about all that when it comes to them, this is a rivalry game, this game means a lot more to me than a bowl game or anything else because that’s how bad I want to win.”