Cheers to Those who Didn’t Quit
Once Drew Barker was sacked on the first play, the wind was taken out of the team’s sails. When things didn’t go their way, Kentucky reacted poorly.
“I could talk about it until I’m blue in the face about handling adversity and responding, and we didn’t for whatever reason. That, we’ll get fixed.” Stoops said it starts today in practice.
Jordan Jones was one of the few that didn’t give up. After the game he called out his teammates who did appear to quit when the going got tough. Stoops didn’t have a problem with what Jones said, but instead of using the word “quit” he said, “I’d rather have guys respond the way he does.”
There was one other guy who did not back down from the fight — Kyle Meadows. Meadows was responsible for giving up the first sack, but he did not let it determine how he played the rest of the game.
“He really came back and played a heck of a game and really fought the rest of the way which was good to see for him. He played one of his better games against some very talented guys.”
Stoops is Disappointed in the Secondary
The secondary was hyped to be one of the best in the SEC ahead of the season, yet few SEC defenses have given up more passing yards than Kentucky. Sometimes the defensive backs may be trying to do too much, but that’s no excuse. He’s disappointed in the first two weeks and is taking the matter into his own hands today.
“They’re good kids. They mean well. They just don’t understand yet and they’re sophomores. I’ll be in their meeting to day. Their football IQ is going up.”
There are updates on injured players, suspended players and a player who was dealing with an NCAA issue.
- Stoops is “confident” he will have George Asafo-Adjei ready to play after the sophomore missed the flight to Florida while dealing with an ankle injury. Cole Mosier’s status is unsure, potentially thrusting Landon Young into his first career start.
- Kobie Walker did not make the trip to Florida after ten tackles in his first career game. Suspended for week two, Stoops has not yet decided on Walker’s future.
- Jordan Bonner appeared on the two-deep for the first time. Coaches insisted his absence was due to his late arrival, but today Stoops revealed that he was also dealing with an NCAA issue. UK appealed an NCAA decision and did not receive word of his eligibility until the week before the season started.
- Another Jordan, Jordan Griffin, will be worked into the rotation at cornerback while Stoops hopes he can save Henry Clay product Davonte Robinson for a redshirt.
How the Coaching Staff Responded
After the game Mark Stoops said it was time to “get back to work.” Although it was “business as usual,” sticking to the same routine, they took a much deeper dive into the film to figure out what went wrong in the first two weeks.
“The routine stays the same,” Stoops said involving film grading and meetings, but there were some changes. “We had to spend some extra time analyzing ourselves. That’s for sure.”
The coaches hope to simplify the the playbook, while not entirely scrapping what they’ve developed so far. “You have to stick to the things that you know that will help you win.”
Help from Bret Bielema
Reaching a new low, Mark Stoops needed some perspective from an outsider to help move his team forward. Stoops shared some words with his old friend Bret Bielema on how to approach this week to help get this team back on track.
The Greatest Gut Punch
“It didn’t appear to me that we had a lot of belief in winning that game.”
When a fan doesn’t believe Kentucky can beat Florida, that’s understandable. It’s incomparable when the players don’t believe. Why even play the game?