«

»

Guest post: Is glass half full or half empty at UK?

Jeff Badet's TD catch was one of the bright spots for UK. (Vicky Graff Photo)

Jeff Badet’s TD catch was one of the bright spots for UK. (Vicky Graff Photo)

By KEITH PEEL

A couple of points from the last UK game from my perspective.

From the glass half-full perspective, we saw that this team has ability ( offense and defense) and the problems are correctable with a good coaching staff. We saw three other SEC teams build first-half leads only to collapse and blow them in the second half ( Texas A&M, Mississippi State and Vanderbilt; only A&M could pull out a win on a gutsy call in OT). Two of those three are on our schedule. They both are considered football powers compared to UK and would be winnable if the first half UK team shows up.

From a glass half empty, another collapse when the other team starts punching back, special teams was abysmal, quarterback looked like a high school player when the heat was turned up (like U of L game last year), two targets to tight end (1 catch), conservative play calling in second half just like last year. Conservative defense once we got the lead, no perceivable adjustments at half ( just like last year). Offensive line looked like a C-USA line, not SEC.

Bottom line is its just one game but I believe it will be a career definer for Mark Stoops. The team will either rise from the ashes ( like Rich Brooks) or continue downward until Stoops is releasedĀ  in 2017-2018 season( like Bill Curry and Joker Phillips).

One last thought: When UK needed to run the ball and Drew Barker mentally collapsed. I wonder if they considered putting Stephen Johnson in to run the read option and give USM a different look that they couldn’t adjust to after halftime. It couldn’t have been worse than what we saw ( 13 yards in third quarter; one interception, two fumbles, no points ). Sometimes desperate times call for desperate measures.

12 comments

Skip to comment form

  1. William

    And then there was the Ole Miss collapse against FSU last night. How many times did UT lose leads in the second half last year? I had given up on Brooks at about this point in his tenure. I’m not ready to make that mistake again.But that’s just me.

  2. Larry Pup

    Keith I think you nailed it pretty well. As for Barker looking like a high school QB, it is kind of hard to play that position when there is no protection up front. Consider this, UK looked gassed, USM looked like they were in better shape to me. That said, the UK defense was on the field all night because in the first half UK scored quickly via the pass, with very few rushing yards mainly because USM was stopping the run. They got zero help from their Eddie Gran run offence in the 2nd half. No time outs called, no adjustments made to stop the bleeding. You must realize how much grit and heart it takes for a team to come from 25 down, score 34 unanswered, and walk off a winner on the road against a power five conference team. USM showed a lot of heart. I say a team takes on the character of their coach. Stoops looked rattled on the sidelines as he always does to me, and his team did too. On the other hand, Hopson looked poised, and in charge. I don’t think Stoops has a clue. If this UK football team goes into the swamp and plays down their like they did in the 2nd half against USM, it will be a blood bath, and 30 straight years of frustration. UK has to find a way to rise up and play hard nosed, violent football to have any chance. Like you said too, substitute guys that want to play that way. Both UK lines, Oline and Dline have to play better assignment football. Bottom line, show some heart, some will to win.

  3. TheProfessor

    Have empty? Half full? Neither?

    It is what it is. I do not see UK bowling in 2016, but I oppose any move to dump Stoops. In my opinion, building a program the old fashioned way is a long term proposition, and I believe move damage has been done over the decades with the revolving door of coaches than good.

    As for Barker, he posted the 5th best passing efficiency in the country on Saturday. Of all the areas of UK’s game that pose concerns, the QB play is least among them. This program needs linemen on both sides of the ball that are SEC quality. The Linebackers need experience, and that takes time too.

    1. Larry Pup

      UK keeps Stoops they keep losing IMO. That guy may be a good assistant, but not a head coach. Hell, FCS EKU almost came in here last year and beat him, and should have. The two biggest rivals, Louisville and UT have his number. He now has lost more games than Joker. There is experience on the UK Oline but they still can’t block anybody. There is more talent, yet losing football. His defense can’t stop the run and never has since he’s been here. His teams melt under pressure. I could go on. Keep losing like they did Sat. night and recruiting will go south quick. I look at Stoops and ask this question, if I was a young football prospect would I want to play for Stoops, pencil in your own answer right there. I wouldn’t. Can he turn this thing around in 2016 is the question. If he can’t, then I say a change is due quick in order to save ticket revenue. He will have had one more year than they gave one of our very own, and with a worse record. Joker at least found a way to beat UT..

  4. UKFMLY

    I couldn’t agree more. Saw a lot of great stuff and some correctable stuff but the line on both sides of the ball seems like the biggest issue. I was for Stoops long before Joker was fired and I still am. I took some verbal abuse Sunday at the lake, but I stand firm with him. In football size does matter when it’s the lineman.

    KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK GO BLUE OR STAY HOME

    1. Larry Pup

      UKFMLY..how many correctable issues has Stoops constantly harped on since he’s been here. How many times does he say “we have to work harder, and we will” only to show the same old let downs and results game after game The first thing he needs to do to keep his job is bring in a new DC.

      1. UKFMLY

        Larry you and I both know that we have heard it all before. A new DC may be what’s needed but I think this team is close. I just hate giving up. I get the frustration that a lot of fans are expressing but heck someone has to be positive.

        1. Larry Pup

          I admire your attitude, I really do. Hang in there. I was like that for years, but no more. I just don’t see Stoops getting it done. I have sort of had it with UK football. It’s the same losing story year in and year out. They create ways to lose. I don’t know who could come here and turn this program around. It would take a special man. He would have to be an exceptional coach. Maybe a man that is not even on the radar. Maybe a successful HEAD COACH at an FCS school. I just don’t know anymore. For one, who would take the job? There is more to coaching than recruiting, and X & O’s. For one, his players have to be ready and willing to run through a brick wall for him. I don’t see that with this team, and this coach. No hard feelings. I’m sure Mark Stoops is a fine man, but he ain’t getting it done and that’s the bottom line.

        2. Persimmon Knob

          Right you are Mike……………Wait! You’re not Mike? Funny you sound just like him.

          1. Larry Pup

            Just calling them like I see them Knob. Mike is right on this football mess. Look, I hope Stoops can turn it around, but it ain’t working out so well. A blind man could see it! You would be better off minding your own business.

  5. Andy

    Its empty and then some. Our D has been awful for quite sometime now.

  6. Mike

    Team has been running on EMPTY since Stoops got here. Nashville radio station 104.5 laughing at UK for their implosion and Stoops saying that “he was happy for Dawson for what he went thru” when Stoops was the one who put him thru it. This guy may definitely be worse than Choker, and I didn’t think anyone could be. Duped by Stoops.

Leave a Reply