Tag: Mark Stoops

Calipari, Stoops Sign Two-Year Extensions

John Calipari

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Kentucky men’s basketball head coach John Calipari and football head coach Mark Stoops have each agreed to two-year extensions to their respective contracts, Athletics Director Mitch Barnhart announced on Wednesday.

The amendment to Calipari’s contract extends his deal from March 30, 2022 to March 30, 2024. Calipari’s total guaranteed compensation – including base salary, media/endorsement payments and retention bonuses – will be $8 million for the amended term. The total guaranteed compensation will increase to $7.75 million for the 2017-18 season and $8 million for each season thereafter.

Mark Stoops: “The plays that are there, we’re not making them.’

Mark Stoops (Vicky Graff Photo)

Mark Stoops (Vicky Graff Photo)

Here is the opening statement that Kentucky coach Mark Stoops made Saturday after his team’s loss in Knoxville that dropped UK’s record to 5-5 with two games remaining.

“We didn’t play good enough to win. You have to give credit to Tennessee,” Stoops said. “They made plays, they were physical, they put us in a lot of space with their run game. Their dual-threat quarterback put a lot of pressure on us. They put a lot to the perimeter and made big plays — explosive runs. It’s hard to win when you do that.

Turnovers could decide UK-Tennessee winner

Stephen Johnson (Vicky Graff Photo)

Stephen Johnson (Vicky Graff Photo)


Kentucky has had an issue with turnovers and has had at least two giveaways in every game this season. But Tennessee has fumbled 23 times — and lost nine — and thrown 11 interceptions going into Saturday’s game with visiting Kentucky.

Kentucky coach Mark Stoops knows turnovers  could determine Saturday’s winner.

“It’s definitely gonna play a factor. It always does, and hopefully we’ll protect the football a little bit better,” said Stoops. “I was pleased this past game with the emphasis on trying to get some turnovers, but as you know, sometimes the ball’s on the ground, you get it or you don’t. We were fortunate to get a few breaks this past week. Unfortunately we lost some as well.”

Receivers contribute to running game with blocking

Garrett Johnson likes to catch passes, but he's also been blocking well. (Vicky Graff Photo)

Garrett Johnson likes to catch passes, but he’s also been blocking well. (Vicky Graff Photo)


With Kentucky’s revamped running game, receivers have had to turn to blocking a lot more than catching passes — and none of them seem to mind.

I asked Mark Stoops Wednesday on the SEC Coaches Teleconference how he felt the receivers had been blocking. Obviously, it was a question he liked.

”I think something we talk about all the time is being selfless, and that’s not always the easiest trait to get accomplished within a football team because you have some very competitive guys and guys that want to make plays for their team,” Stoops said.

Offensive line playing physical, selfless

Kentucky's offensive line has given Benny Snell run to room. (Victoria Graff Photo)

Kentucky’s offensive line has given Benny Snell run to room. (Victoria Graff Photo)


Going into the season Kentucky’s offensive line was supposed to be one of the best in the Southeastern Conference.

It didn’t look that way in a loss at Florida. It didn’t have great success at Alabama, but who does.

However, during the last four SEC games, Kentucky has pounded teams with its running game thanks to the UK offensive line.

Kash Daniel says if stadium not full “something is wrong”

Kentucky fans have seen tough times for the football program, but Saturday they have a chance to see UK win a fifth SEC game. (Vicky Graff Photo)

Kentucky fans have seen tough times for the football program, but Saturday they have a chance to see UK win a fifth SEC game. (Vicky Graff Photo)


Two games into the season many Kentucky fans had given up on the season after UK’s 0-2 start. After the Cats won 35-21 at Missouri Saturday for their fourth SEC win, some Kentucky fans actually came to the airport to greet the team and coaches when they arrived back in Lexington.

Stoops’ Cats better prepared, more excited

Mark Stoops liked what he saw at Missouri. (Vicky Graff Photo)

Mark Stoops liked what he saw at Missouri. (Vicky Graff Photo)


Mark Stoops always starts his weekly press conference with an opening statement. He did again Monday, but pay attention to what the Kentucky coach had to say going into Saturday’s game at Georgia after a convincing win at Missouri  last week.

Stoops’ pride in what his team did is obvious.

“I was most pleased with our preparation. I felt like the guys really had a tough mindset last week and was confident. But we were prepared and extremely disciplined,” Stoops said.  “We did the little things, even with the early game.

Can Cats pay price to win at Missouri?


Getting over a dramatic 40-38 win over Mississippi State probably has not been an easy task for Kentucky players this week.

“We constantly talk to our players about paying the price during the week. Everybody wants to win on Saturday, but much of the game is won throughout the week in our preparation. I think we need to get our energy level back up,” Kentucky coach Mark Stoops said.

“Everybody at this point in the season is banged up and bruised, but we need to have great energy throughout the rest of the week in our preparation. We better be waking up ready to play an early start, an early kickoff on Saturday.”

Benny Snell: Win over Mississippi State gives team hope

Benny Snell enjoyed Saturday's win. (Bill Thirry Photo)

Benny Snell enjoyed Saturday’s win. (Bill Thirry Photo)


Kentucky opened the season by blowing a 35-10 lead and lost to Southern Mississippi. On Saturday night, UK just about blew a 34-24 lead — and UK had the ball  inside the 10-yard line just about to score again — before rallying to beat Mississippi State 40-38.

So what does that do for coach Mark Stoops’ program?

Recruit Mark Stoops said no to coach Nick Saban

Mark Stoops (Vicky Graff Photo)

Mark Stoops (Vicky Graff Photo)


Count Mark Stoops as a Nick Saban fan even if he did snub the current Alabama coach once several years ago.

Kentucky plays at No. 1 Alabama Saturday night and Saban will be trying to keep his team undefeated and on track for another national title.

Kentucky, despite what Stoops says, likely will be simply trying to survive.

“I admire an awful lot about Coach Saban. It’s hard to define all those things, but anybody that’s in this business – this coaching profession is built on respect, and it starts there. I have great respect for what he’s done and how disciplined he is and the work ethic that he has,” Stoops said Monday.