Coming off the bye week, Mark Stoops took to his weekly call-in show. Stoops discussed his team’s preparations for Vanderbilt and the season going forward. Here’s what we learned from this week’s Mark Stoops Show:
How UK will handle young guys the rest of the season
Mark Stoops said the coaching staff has decided to redshirt sophomore wide receiver Clevan Thomas. Thomas has played in only two games this season and has reeled in three catches for 63 yards. He will be available for two more games before his redshirt is ineligible.
Sticking to the theme of young guys and playing time, Stoops also said they would like to use Zy’Aire Hughes more in the offense. Some of you may remember Hughes only play this season was a 49-yard touchdown run against Murray State.
Zy’Aire Hughes takes it in on the double reverse. pic.twitter.com/9NonuA8WBj
— Scott Charlton (@Scott_Charlton) September 15, 2018
Stoops also said Darian Kinnard would see a lot more time at left tackle as the Cats are trying to manage that position with Landon Young out for the year, and Nasir Watkins still trying to come back healthy. Kinnard getting more time will be a massive help for EJ Price. Price had his fair share of struggles in College Station.
Stoops alluded that we may see Chance Poore worked into the kicking rotation before the end of the year. If Kentucky opts to sit him out in two of the remaining six games, he will still be able to redshirt.
Stoops Praises Team’s Discipline
Mark Stoops had high praise for the way his team has handled chippiness and stayed discipline this season. Watching this Kentucky team and the way they have handled extracurricular activity is a far cry from what we saw against Lousiville at Kroger Field last season when a Lamar Jackson shove ignited a Royal Rumble near the south end zone. This season Kentucky’s defense has zero after-the-play penalties, “selfish” penalties, coach Stoops calls them. A huge step forward from last year.
Targeting CJ Conrad
A fan favorite criticism of Kentucky football is the involvement of CJ Conrad.”We’re constantly trying to target him,” Stoops said to a caller. “People keep eyes on him now. Again, he has to create space, and we have to get going in the passing game to create those opportunities. We target him quite a bit.”
A Small Update on Josh Paschal
Stoops also gave us an update on Josh Paschal. “Josh Paschal is doing very good,” Stoops said. “His recovery is going very well. The injury to the foot is doing better. He’s getting out there and running a little bit.”
Stoops wrapped up today’s show by encouraging the BBN to be out in full force on Saturday; he believes the fans really do make a difference.