Fans were clamoring for Sawyer Smith to try his hand at quarterback once Kentucky got down by multiple scores in the second half. It was clear the offense wasn’t going to put any points on the board with Lynn Bowden running the ball out of the quarterback position, and Smith seemed healthy enough on the sideline to at least get a look.
However, Stoops did not make the switch, and Bowden finished out the game with zero points scored by the Wildcats. Afterwards, Stoops was asked if he considered a change to Smith, to which Stoops said, “it was tough” to make that call given the situation.
“Listen, it is difficult for me to continue to answer questions on this,” Stoops told reporters. “You know what I mean? I’m not trying to withhold information; you know me, I’m very up front and I try to be as honest as I can.
“He’s close,” Stoops continued. “It’s tough on a cold, rainy, miserable night to put him in when he’s just there or getting close to getting ready to play. He would go. You saw him go in the South Carolina game. He would play if his arm is falling off. But I can’t do that to him again. It was a tough night and I knew it was going to be a tough grind, so we gave ourselves the best option we felt like we had at that point.”
Without making excuses, Stoops reminded everyone the conditions did not favor throwing the ball anyway.
“It was a difficult night. Before everybody throws darts at Lynn in the passing game, I mean, they have one hell of a quarterback over there and threw the ball for 30 yards tonight. It was tough. It was difficult.”