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Mark Stoops ranked as a top-15 coach in the country

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Where would this program be without Stoops?

Stoops Belk Bowl Trophy Drew Brown - Sea of Blue

The Kentucky Wildcats are preparing to kickoff the 2020 season later this month when they travel to face the Auburn Tigers.

The BBN has seen the football program take a huge leap forward in recent seasons and the on-field production has led to a ton of recruiting success.

Without Mark Stoops, who knows where this program would currently be, and I would argue that it wouldn’t be better than it is right now.

With that being said, Stoops should be perceived as one of the top coaches in the country and according to Connor O’Gara of Saturday Down South, he is.

O’Gara ranked the top 25 coaches in college football heading into 2020, and Stoops came in at No. 15, which is two spots ahead of Jim Harbaugh (Michigan) and three spots ahead of Tom Herman (Texas).

“Yes, I’d rather start my team with Stoops than Herman or Harbaugh. That’s how much I believe in what he has built at Kentucky. There’s a reason Florida State wanted Stoops. He took over the SEC doormat that went 0-8 in conference play and led the program to its first winning SEC season in 4 decades. That’s not a typo. And last year, all he did was take a team with major turnover that got off to an 0-3 SEC start … and he won 8 games … with a wide receiver playing quarterback.”

O’Gara took it a step further and compared Stoops’ achievements since 2017 to that of Jimbo Fisher as seen below:

“Coach “A” is Jimbo Fisher and Coach “B” is Stoops. I’d argue doing that at Kentucky as opposed to doing that at Florida State and Texas A&M is a bit more challenging, too. Stoops’ program might not have a ceiling to be a yearly top-15 team, but if you think Kentucky is falling off the face of the earth anytime soon, you haven’t been paying attention.”

Stoops and his staff truly are building something special in Lexington and as they head into the 2020 season, Stoops may be putting his deepest and most talented team on the field in his tenure at Kentucky.