Q&A: Stoops pleased with Cats’ attitude

first_imgKentucky head coach Mark Stoops greets the crowd as he and the team arrive before the game against Missouri Saturday night at Commonwealth Stadium. Sept. 26, 2015Kentucky head coach Mark Stoops greets the crowd as he and the team arrive before the game against Missouri Saturday night at Commonwealth Stadium. Sept. 26, 2015Kentucky head coach Mark Stoops met with the media Thursday for the final time before his team takes on Eastern Kentucky. You can read a full transcript of his comments below:Opening statement: “Alright. Yeah, it was a good week. Good Thursday practice, good week and we’ll cap it off tomorrow with our last little run through. Just looking forward to getting back on the field Saturday and looking to improve on what we’ve been doing.”On status of Boom Williams: “Yeah, he’s been at practice, so we’ll see. We’ll see where things go. I’m not really not going to comment.”On if there’s been right preparation after coming off three straight tough SEC opponents: “They have, yeah. It’s been good. To this point it’s been good. There’s a lot of mental preparation that takes part between now and Saturday and hopefully we’ll keep it going and have the right focus, but so far, it’s been good.”On increased energy from younger players eager to get on field: “Not really any more increased energy. I’ve been pleased with a lot of those guys. I’ve said it before, one of the reasons why we like them so much is they’re very focused and they’re into practice and working to get better every day. And with that, you start gaining some trust from your coaches and you want to get them on the field.”On if it was important to talk with Dean Hood before this game: “Yeah, I did. I just wanted Coach to know that we would be looking to play some good football, and none of the extracurricular stuff. And I told him I wouldn’t put up with it. Of course, I wanted to reach out about the incident that happened with him, and the accident that happened. There was a couple reasons to talk to him. We had a good conversation. As I said on Monday, I have great respect for him and their program and what they’ve done, and we’re looking forward to welcoming them to our stadium and playing a good, clean, hard-fought game.”On if Dy’Shawn Mobley being cleared to play changes anything: “No. Nothing.”On Hood being the defensive coordinator at Wake Forest and his defensive acumen: “You see that every day. You see that in their program. You watch it on all their film. They’re a well-coached team. I’ve said that Monday. I’ve said it several times. He’s a very good coach that knows what he’s doing and a good program with some talented players. They don’t have as much depth because of numbers, but some very good players.”On Regie Meant’s and Jordan Swindle’s status: “Regie will not play. Jordan’s fine.”On Dorian Baker’s hand: “He’s fine. He had the cast on but that’ll come off today. Just preventative to let it calm down a little bit.”On if Meant’s injury is a lingering thing: “He should be fine, hopefully, in a week or so. He’s close.”On the benefit of a bye week coming up to get some guys healthy: “Anytime — we’ll get to that when we have time off. Right now we’re focused on this game, but sure I think anytime you get a few days it helps some guys get some rest.”On if he is making some recruiting stops before the game: “Yeah, we’ve got to cut this right now. I’m on my way tonight. I’ve got some games tonight and tomorrow, so I’ve got to hit the road. I understand the weather is messing me up with the helicopter, so I’ve got to drive. I’m driving. Yeah.”On C.J. Johnson’s improvement: “He’s been doing a good job. He’s worked hard. He’s always been a very active player. It’s a matter of putting everything together: being disciplined and all his techniques and understanding the defense, all the ins and outs of the defense. So, he’s — we’ve always known he’s had some ability, and he’s always been a good, active pass-rusher. He has some good quickness, so it was really good to get him a bunch of action last week.”On if this is the kind of game he’d like to see more from Alex Montgomery: “I hope so. Yeah. We’ll see. You know, as I said, no matter who we’re playing or what the score of the game is I always talk about trying to get guys in the game. I say it after every game: I want to constantly push to get guys in when the game is on the line. We expect a very tight game, but I would like to continue to build depth within our team.”last_img read more

Essien back on quick recovery

first_imgFresh diagnoses have shown that Ghana midfielder Michael Essien’s recovery from injury is back on track and will play for the Black Stars in the first World Cup qualifier against Benin.This picture shows how the Chelsea midfielder is ahead of schedule in his recovery from knee ligament damage.Ghanasoccernet can confirm that he has made away with the clutches and even drives for his daily rehabilitation workout.The Chelsea midfielder, 25, has stepped up his rehabilitation programme with physio, Thierry Laurent in the gym even though he feared last month that that he could be out until March.But Essien is now hoping to return to action for the Blues early in the New Year to boost their Premier League challenge.If he does so, it will be four months earlier than originally thought, handing a boost to the Black Stars for their March date with Benin. Doctors had feared he would be out for the rest of the season after injuring his knee playing for Ghana against Libya in early September.Source: Sun and Ghanasoccernet reportslast_img read more