Mark Stoops is entering his 11th year as Kentucky Football's head coach. He took the podium to discuss the state of the program and the 2023 season.
Mark started media day off by reflecting on his time at UK and shouldered quite a bit of the blame for last season's mishaps. He says the issues were addressed by personnel and by scheme to help Kentucky get back to their identity and fix the offensive woes.
He quickly mentioned the newly renovated Nutter Fieldhouse and you can tell that he's really excited about it. "It's beautiful." He mentioned they had a full practice in it for the first time yesterday.
Regarding the roster, Mark Stoops also announced that sophomore OT Nik Hall will most likely have to medical redshirt. Hall had an injury this offseason that he has struggled with so he will likely not see the field this fall. Tough situation for Hall but a medical redshirt will allow him to take his time in recovering and getting back to 100% for next season. He also mentioned that a few guys have some "soft tissue injuries" but should be good to go in a couple days. Injuries are apart of fall camp but Stoops and the training staff are doing their best to monitor and protect the players as much as possible.
Another big piece of news for the offensive line is that Ohio State OL transfer, Ben Christman, will play guard this year. There were thoughts that he may get a run at tackle but interior it is. That leaves Courtland Ford, Marquis Cox, and Jeremy Flax at tackle for now. Stoops was asked if the OL has improved and he agreed that it's improved but he said it will take to time to get it back to the Kentucky standard. I fully expect the OL to take a major step forward from last season but experience as a unit will only make them better as the year goes on.
One of the last remarks the head coach made was about Deone Walker and how he has changed since year one. Stoops said he's become a much more vocal leader this year rather than just a leader by example. You can tell he's giddy about Deone but really wants to keep it in to keep him focused on the task at hand.
Mark was also asked about the recent hazing incidents and said "never been an issue and will continue to not be an issue" when discussing if it was something he had to monitor with his program. His main approach was that he gets players from "all walks of life" and that his main job is to take care of them while they are here. Hazing "will not be tolerated" under his helm.
Shortly after, Liam Coen and Brad White took to the podium to give their outlooks on their players and the team as a whole. Mark Stoops has a solid staff surrounding his program, that's for sure.