By LARRY VAUGHT
Remember last year when ESPN analyst Lee Corso said Kentucky might have the worst defense in the country after the way it started the season.
Kentucky players used that as motivation to turn a 1-3 start into a 7-6 finish and berth in the TaxSlayer Bowl.
Maybe a fairly innocent tweet from former UK offensive lineman Max Godby during Saturday’s 45-7 loss to Mississippi State will do the same for the team this year. Godby tweeted during the game that linebacker Jordan Jones needed to stop trash talking after almost every play. After the game, UK outside linebacker lashed out at Godby, a former teammate.
“Stick to punt shield and scout team buddy,” Ware tweeted to Godby, a walk-on player for UK.
Godby later admitted he made a mistake questioning Jones even though many other UK fans were doing the same thing on social media. He called himself a “majority hypocrite” who needed a reality check and told Ware on Twitter he should not have written the tweet.
“I was an extremely crappy fan today. I tell fans not to ever critique a player or come at a player. I did exactly that,” Godby posted.
He said he should not have used names when criticizing players.
“These guys needed the fans backing. Learn from me, don’t follow my lead on this one,” Godby posted. “These guys will learn from tonight, they will get it corrected and right the ship. Let’s back this team as they take on Tennessee.”
Godby is right about UK being able to use the fans’ support against Tennessee, a team that is only 3-4 and has not scored an offensive touchdown in the last 14 quarters. But if UK’s defense gets dominated like it did at State, that stat will change for the Vols Saturday.
“There’s certainly things we need to do better and we need to man up and play more physically, play stronger,” Kentucky coach Mark Stoops said after Saturday’s loss. “There’s enough blame to go around and I don’t want to point any fingers. We’ll accept it and we’ve got to get them playing better.”
There was more than enough blame. Stoops even told his players to “zip it” after the game and quit whining, complaining, pouting or whatever.
“Look at yourself, look at things you can do better, and if you got your butt whooped you accept it and you do something about it on Monday and in our preparation through the week. I’m not worried about it. Nobody likes to lose. Everybody’s manhood gets challenged. There’s going to be some frustrations and some things, but there’s nothing we can’t mange,” Stoops said.