Mark Stoops wants Cats to help flooding victims but also help put smiles on their faces during the season

Mark Stoops has talked to Breathitt County football coach Kyle Moore about his high school team's needs after the recent flooding. (Vicky Graff Photo)

Thanks to a huge matching donation from Kelly and Joe Craft along with a $350,000 donation from former Kentucky basketball star Anthony Davis, Kentucky basketball helped raise almost $3 million for eastern Kentucky flood relief during a telethon Tuesday.

Kentucky football coach Mark Stoops hinted Wednesday at media day that the football team would be doing something soon to help eastern Kentucky and senior defensive back Jalen Geiger said the same thing in a video after the team’s first practice.

Stoops said he had talked with Breathitt County football coach Kyle Moore to extend “condolences” and offer to help his team after flooding damaged the team’s equipment. Eastern Kentucky University is actually letting Breathitt use the school’s practice field, cafeteria and dorms for three days next week after doing the same for Hazard this week.

“We’re collecting as many things as we can that we’re permitted to donate through football because their locker room was destroyed and all the things there,” Stoops said on Wednesday.

“But I did mention to coach Moore, it’s devastating. There’s mass destruction. It’s horrible no matter where you look at it. Certainly I saw certain clips of that, of their locker room and them digging themselves out of that, cleaning themselves up. I just wanted him to know that we’re here to help him and support him and donate things as we can.”

That’s when Stoops pledged future support for those impacted by the flooding.

“The team is going to do a couple different things to help, and we’ll continue to do our part,” Stoops said. “I guess my only message would be to eastern Kentucky, continue to stay strong like they are. Those are tough, strong, resilient people.”

“We’re going to do a lot of things to try to help them in the meantime, but we’re also going to go out there and play extremely hard and hopefully represent them the right way, that they really have something in the fall to smile about.”

15 Responses

  1. Coach, it’s nice that you want the team to be involved in helping the flood victims, but you are a month away from your season opener. You will be without the best player on the team, so I think you need to be focused on filling that hole now. There will still be opportunities to help these people after the football season.

    1. I’ve watched your whining and crying over UK stuff on this site for awhile now. But this really is a totally new low. I signed up because this is school-child like comments. You are truly a miserable person. What have you done to help anyone during this disaster? You do realize that there are still people missing? Some may never be found. ARH in hazard still has 2 employees unaccounted for, and over 160 employees have totally lost everything. Try putting yourself in their place.

      I have spent more than 40 years of my life in fire and EMS. I have spent many days in eastern Ky assisting with fires, floods, tornado relief, and other things. These people don’t need help in 6 months. They need it now!

      Larry, please forgive me if I have crossed any of your lines. But for someone who has given most of his life serving others and enjoying seeing the happiness that your help can bring, this drivel by evidently a very childish and selfish person is unacceptable. From anyone who would consider a game more important than peoples lives. Whodat, you need to seek help before you harm yourself or someone close to you.

      1. Are you saying the University should cancel the football season so the team can spend that time helping these people who do need help? Then they should cancel the entire school year so the students and professors and everyone can go do what they can. But that’s not going to happen. It’s awful what has happened in eastern KY, but life does go on and people still have jobs. Doing those jobs in no way makes them evil or selfish people. They do what they can do as they can do. You being "holier than thou" have no idea about who has helped people in need and who hasn’t. You are right, these people do need help now and they are still going to need help 6 months from now and possibly 6 years from now. Your post implies that anyone who went to work today or plans to watch TV tonight, much less a KY football game this season are horrible people because they are not in Hazard, KY volunteering to do something. Not everyone can drop everything every time something bad happens. I have sent as much money as my budget allows to the flood victims and the tornado victims and will continue to do so with the next disaster to the extent that I am able. But for some self righteous PRICK to disparage me or anyone else shows what a miserable person you are. Only God has the right to judge and I will face Him with a clear conscience. You have some work to do before you can say that.

        1. Sorry I can’t be around to disparage you this weekend. I’ll be in eastern Ky with a fire department strike force. Hope you enjoy your weekend. (And I seriously do. I want everyone to enjoy their time on earth. You are no different. Believe me when I say life is too short and too sad for so many.)

  2. Kentucky is lucky to have coaches that understand there are more important things in life than a ball game. Ask Chris Oats. There are people who are complete narcissists that know nothing about life or coaching. They don’t care about people that have lost loved one’s not to mention all their possessions. Wonder where they are going to get their next meal. Worried about a place to lay their families head each night. The only thing they care about is living in their moms basement and having her bring them bologna sandwiches so they can watch a ball game and complain about the team and the coaches. To those people I’d say watch out for Karma. We all know what she is.

  3. I agree the eastern Ky flood victims need help asap. I also don’t think whodat meant any disrespect to them or the effort either. He has a right to express his opinion on this site concerning the most important football season in modern UK history being right upon us, and to do so without being attacked personally. Coach Stoops is capable of doing both things in determining what is best for his football team, and for the flood victims, and will do just that in due time.

    Calipari deserves credit for his telethon, and got it. It raised a lot of money, and we are all thankful for that effort too. That said, think on this. I suggest if Cal and UK are as concerned about the flood victims as he seems to indicate, then cancel the Bahama trip and donate the cost of that trip to the flood relief cause. The trip is not necessary, and is going to cost the University a huge sum of money. The games are not that important really, other than producing an exhibition resume. May even get a "star" player hurt in the process and prove nothing. If we want to discuss the lack of importance in "ball games" versus flood victims, such action would vividly show how important the flood victims really are versus a series of ball games in the Behamas. Now, we can all donate money, supplies, and most importantly PRAY. That is what each of us can do everyday.

    It is football time in the "BLUEGRASS" anyway! Go Cats.

    1. Pup thanks for your insight. WAY TOO MANY people come to this site not to express their views, but to attack anyone who sees things differently. Nobody can look at what happened in eastern KY and not be devastated by the suffering there. Most people send whatever money they can and some donate their personal time to the relief effort without tooting their own horn like the hothead here has done. It’s no wonder our country is so divided. Debates no longer are based on issues, we simply attack anyone personally for daring to think unlike ourselves. I NEVER SAID ANYTHING DISRESPECTFUL TO THOSE WHO ARE SUFFERING IN THIS TRAGEDY. Yet I have been vilified by those who shoot their mouth off first and never bother to understand what they are mouthing off about. I understand why so many people across the nation have such contempt for BBN. Mr. Vaught, I would have thought you would have known better being the journalist that you are. You not only approved of the personal attacks, you threw your own 2 cents worth on top of it. You people need to think first and speak later when you have a better understanding of the discussion.
      Pup, again thank you for being the voice of reason here. Mr. Vaught, you’re supposed to be a professional journalist. Start acting like one.

      1. You are really crying about being attacked by people because you’re a narcissist. You are constantly attacking people, players, and coaches you definitely don’t know. Doing it while all along claiming to be a fan. You and people who think like you might be fans, but you’re the fans that give BBN a black eye. Larry has taken up for you in the past that’s why I took a vacation from this site. The fact you are still posting shows Larry IS a professional. I saw your true color a long time ago.

      2. easy there Whodat. Kind of pitiful on your part with the way you attack so many that if someone disagrees with your point you just go wacky. You clearly said prioritize football over helping and I just pointed out folks needed help. Most of us here have been extremely patient with you. I have no problem with others having different opinions. I do have a problem when someone who constantly rips others and tells me to think first and speak later. Trust me, I have thought about a lot of things over some of your posts in the pasts

  4. Back on the topic of the thread, I believe it is always important for the teams to do their speaking on the field or court, which is one of Coach Stoops’ points. The other point is just a little more salient, and that is that so many people in Eastern Kentucky (not to disparage the fans in the rest of this state) have taken great pride and pleasure over the many decades from the success of UK basketball and football, and I believe Coach’s thoughts were really speaking to this manner in which the football team can provide some badly needed emotional lifting to the many people of Eastern Kentucky experiencing complete loss and despair at this time.

    Yes, the football season will go on as scheduled. Yes, the University will start classes again in less than 3 weeks. Yes, I will continue to go to my job and attend to my personal responsibilities. So will the vast majority of people, including those who are able to work directly to contribute to the rescue, recovery, and relief efforts that are clearly in great demand at this sad time.

    I can no longer count the number of major flood events that have ravaged Eastern Kentucky in my lifetime. I have paid close attention to these events because my roots go deep into those mountains, as do those of both of my parents. The valleys are narrow, the terrain other than in the flood plain is largely unsuitable for full-time habitation, and the people tend to live in areas subject to flooding, which only compounds the human impact when these natural events occur.

    There was a time when our nation attended to these natural disasters by building flood control measures to reduce the impact of the sustained heavy rains, but I don’t recall a new flood control project for Eastern Kentucky in the last 40 years. This is where our society has failed the current residents of Eastern Kentucky.

    This is neither the first nor will it be the last major flood event for this region. One thing the terrain of Eastern Kentucky is well suited for is large flood control lakes that could also be the impetus to tourism and an opportunity to revive the Eastern Kentucky economy that once was based solely on coal.

    I guess at the end of the day, the way a society spends its money and invests in its people can vary, and some ways are more or less effective.

    Off the soap box.

    Next up!

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