Stoops Praises UK’s Focus

Photo by Vicki Graff

Could Kentucky have let a 5-0 start tale away from its focus, especially now that it has lost 20-14 in overtime to Texas A&M?

Coach Mark Stoops doesn’t think so.

“They’ve been really good to this point about staying on task, staying on the message. They reiterate the message sometimes before I get to it, which is a good thing,” said Stoops.

“You’re starting to see the defense, you go to our meetings on Friday and you see things where they’re already in there. They’re already on the board talking about the things we must do and anticipating it. And that makes me very excited, just the way they’re approaching it, the way they practice and the way they care.

“Truly, I’ve said it for years but I’m not sure we’ve always lived to that standard, every yard is personal and every point is personal. And we’re starting to play that way.”

Stoops didn’t think his team needed a loss for motivation or focus. With a senior-dominated team, he trusts his veteran players to maintain their focus.

“Our guys were prepped to win the game and I love their approach. There’s things we can do better and part of it is our composure and I feel like the situation affected us some,” Stoops said.

“I talked about how it affected the quarterback. I think it affected us pre-snap with some penalties. It affected us with our frustration. You’ve got to realize that sometimes you’re going to be in a game like that and we’ve got to find a way to adapt, handle it and make plays to win the game.”