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Stoops knows good defense relies on what players, not coaches, know and can execute


All spring Kentucky’s defensive players have talked about how much simpler the scheme is this year, but defensive coordinator D.J. Eliot says it is not that simple.

So who is right? Today I asked coach Mark Stoops, a former defensive coordinator. Enjoy his answer:

“It’s just a mindset. Believe me, we could be as complex as we want to be. It’s getting your players…it’s not what we know. We could sit in there on the board and come up with a lot of good defenses. There are a lot of good ways to do things but it’s up to you to get your team to understand it and teach it and get them to execute it, that’s the bottom line.

“Nobody really cares how much I know or we know on Saturdays, it’s a matter of what the players know and execute and play. I think that’s a big part of our philosophy defensively, to make it simple, make them understand it, know who they are and have tweaks and a lot of changes off of it. We’ll never stop defensively, we’ll always continue to install but that takes time.”

Doubting Rick Minter would have answered the same way last year because he loved complex and confusing.

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  1. Larry Pup

    Great answer to your question. Overall I think Coach is just being a little cautious in his evaluation of his team right now. That is smart.

  2. RJ

    Well, at least he is calling’em like he sees’em. I’d rather see they guy sandbag a little than promise the moon (like the previous staff) then lay an egg. It won’t make Larry very happy that he sandbags a little but, it wouldn’t be the first time I’m sure.:) Based on what we saw last year, I don’t think the coach is sandbagging very much because, for the most part, these are the same players! And, coach is simply saying, “they have to get a LOT better.

  3. Love SEC F-Ball

    Great question – Great answer.

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