Mark Stoops could “relate” to Nick Saban’s remark to ESPN reporter about quarterback situation

Mark Stoops (Wade Upchurch Photo)

By LARRY VAUGHT

After Alabama blasted Louisville in its opening game Saturday night, Alabama coach Nick Saban took exception to a question from ESPN sideline reporter Maria Taylor about what he thought of the way his quarterbacks played.

Obviously, Alabama had a significant quarterback competition before Saban picked a winner. Like most coaches, he doesn’t like to talk about it. Like most coaches, he can snap when he answers — something all media members expect.

What did Kentucky coach Mark Stoops think about Saban’s remarks?

“Well I don’t think I could get after you like he can,” Stoops said at Monday’s press conference. “I mean I could, but I don’t know how well that’s going to go over. I know seven days later I’ll have a big bullseye on my chest , but I did relate to the remark. ”

Most coaches could. And so could most media members because that kind of response happens all the time

“It was very poignant in that I don’t want to talk anything negative about either of our guys, any of our guys, including Danny [Clark]. When people try to get you to ask what one guy’s doing, it’s insinuating that the other one’s not doing that,” Stoops said.

“I can relate to that and just want to be very positive about our guys. And what better example than this past Saturday for us? With the way Gunnar (Hoak) went in, again that is a very big moment.”

Hoak came in with UK trailing in the final minute of the first half after starter Terry Wilson was hurt and led UK on a go-ahead scoring drive. Hoak played two series in the second half before Wilson took back over.

“It’s a great teaching moment for our team. For our young guys because he could have gone in the tank and moped, cried or complained or pointed fingers, but he just worried about himself and preparing and went in in a very difficult situation and performed. I’m proud of him for that,” Stoops said.

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