Ok, so this Saturday didn’t go as any of us had hoped. Given that fact, it went as we should have expected. I’m not saying we should expect to lose or that we are terrible because neither are true, but Mark Stoops has an uphill battle this season. And that’s ok. Be reasonable, people. Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither will this program be. Mark Stoops is the guy for this job but he needs time. Nevertheless, he and the coaching staff are greatly disappointed in the Western Kentucky outcome.
Opening Statement: “Rough day. Not very pleased with the way we played. I thought we’d play better than that. They controlled us at the line of scrimmage, created some good run plays, different looks. We looked out of place. Simple things, you know, leverage on the football, I thought we were very poor. Hurt us an awful lot on first and second down. Seemed like as the game went on, third down, I felt like we could have some opportunities to get some stops. But hurt us, hurt us big time on first and second down.
“Offensively, did some good things at times. We didn’t play good as a team. Early on when we got some turnovers, when we needed to control the football, move it, maybe we didn’t do that. We’ll get back to work. Win or lose, I told the team ‘back to work tomorrow.’ We’ve got to get some things fixed and plan on doing that.”
ON QUARTERBACKS: “Obviously we need to continue to look at that. I thought Jalen did some good things. Obviously I got to look at the film and see if it was him or if it was the players around him that hurt us at times. I thought Jalen did some good things. Obviously Max came in and looked very good and moved the ball for us. So we’ve got to go back and take a good, hard look at that again.”
Neal Brown (Offensive Coordinator)
Opening Statement: “Didn’t play well enough to win. Thought we shot ourselves in the foot. Too many procedure penalties. Fumble obviously hurt us. Thought we had some momentum there (and) the fumble hurt us. Thought we missed some opportunities in the third quarter when I thought we had a chance to kind of take control of the game. We’ve gotta be better on first downs. I think that’s what hurt us. We got behind on the chains and we had a hard time overcoming that.”
D.J. Eliot (Defensive Coordinator
OPENING REMARKS: “We didn’t play well enough to win. We didn’t execute when we needed to. We’ve just got to get better.”
ON RUMPH, WILLIS, OTHER INJURIES: “I haven’t heard that anybody’s got anything serious.”
ON THE ROUGH START: “It was frustrating. I had hoped that it would have been better, but it wasn’t, so we just got to go back to the drawing board and try to get the guys better.”
ON IF WKU DID ANYTHING THAT SURPRISED THEM: “Yeah, they didn’t do too much that surprised us. The things that you got to be good at (against) on defense that anybody could run, they ran them, and we just – we weren’t good at them
And to all the people who are scared this one game will alter the course of our program due to recruit attrition, Drew Barker says, “shut up.” Not really but he’s not scared and neither are our other 2014 recruits.
As the UK football class of 2014 added talented prospects over the summer, recruiting analysts warned of the negativity that was bound to come with a tough season.
It started early — before Mark Stoops had even finished coaching his first game with the Wildcats. The loss to Western Kentucky on Saturday night in Nashville was a disappointment to UK fans, some of whom immediately questioned whether Stoops could keep the class together.
Conner quarterback Drew Barker took it as an opportunity for reassurance.
“Quit acting like we are going to decommit. We know the situation!” Barker tweeted.
The four-star prospect also pointed out that Alabama lost a game to Louisiana-Monroe during Nick Saban’s first season as head coach in 2007. That UL-Monroe squad came to Tuscaloosa with a losing record.
Mikel Horton and Thaddeus Snodgrass were among the other high-profile commitments who joined Barker in a call for patience during Stoops’ first season.