Jen Smith on UK Football

Q&A: Stoops on aiming for six wins, 2017 recruiting class on SEC teleconference

MARK STOOPS

“We’re getting ready and excited for the opportunity to play Austin Peay at home. It’s important for us to go out and play well. It’s the last home game of the year and it will be senior day. We’d like to have these seniors go out on a winning note and play well and look good and play good for our home fans as well for the last opportunity of the year. It’s also important for us to go out, next opportunity to get six victories and we’d like to get six and move on to our last game of the year. We’re hard at work and excited about this opportunity to play at home this week.”

On new calculation for size of 2017 recruiting class, which he initially said would be small, but may be bigger now thanks to attrition and how recruiting has been going: “Recruiting is going very well. There will be some more. We always built in some attrition and guys getting hurt and transfers and so on. So we’ll adjust accordingly. The numbers are going up a bit, but it’s still going to be a small class compared to some of our other ones. We’re excited about it and things are going very well.”

On the benefit of scheduling FCS teams for FBS programs: “What’s the benefit to us? Just a home game and another opportunity. So, I’m not sure I follow your question.”

On FCS schools getting money out of the game and if there is a similar benefit for FBS teams: “Yeah. There’s a benefit to getting another home game. Sometimes it’s a challenge getting the opponents you’d like to schedule. Obviously, I think that’s the benefit for us to have another home game.”

On if he thinks FBS schools would benefit from playing more games against FCS schools to spread out schedule: “I’m not sure about that. I don’t know if I’m capable of answering for the rest of the schools. I know for us right now at this point it’s a good game for us. It fits into our schedule.”

On if he’s noticed inward pressure this week to get win No. 6 after being stuck at five the last two years: “I think we’re a better team. You know, we’re playing better. Even though we’re coming off two losses, I think we did some very good things against some very good opponents the last two games. Since our bye we’ve played some good football. We know there’s always room for improvement. We’re trying to peak at the right time, but I think our team is stronger. I think we’re more physical than we’ve been in the past, particularly running the football. You know, at this point in the season everyone’s banged up and I think that’s important. Every year’s a new year so I haven’t noticed any inward pressure. I’ve noticed our team really going out to prepare to continue to improve as a football team.”

On when Kentucky played Alabama, if Alabama’s freshmen seemed like freshmen: “Yeah I think it’s always, those guys know they didn’t appear like freshmen. They obviously play on a great football team with great players surrounding them, and they fit in quite well. We have a freshman here who’s doing pretty good things himself in Benny Snell. And so I think when you’re surrounded by good players, and you have a good scheme and good system, you certainly can plug in the right guys.”

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