Matthew Mitchell addressed the issues with UK Hoops head on in an open later to the fans of his program today.
In it, Coach Mitchell says it’s impossible for him to know every detail of UK Hoops’ recent downward spiral, but he believes he will learn from it and, when it’s all said and done, it will make him a better coach.
Some of the blame, he says, is on him thinking some aspects of coaching are “automatic” due to previous success:
Since the last time I spoke publicly on April 27, much has happened in our program. I have to be honest, there have been some very, very difficult moments these past two weeks. Players transferring, recruits decommitting and a complete turnover of our coaching staff was not what I had hoped for nor expected at the end of the 2015-16 season. All of that happening put our remaining players, our remaining staff, the media and our loyal and devoted fans in a state of confusion.
I have had to look in the mirror and ask myself an important question, “How did all of this happen?” How could we have success in the classroom, in our community and on the court during the 2015-16 season and simultaneously have players and coaches wanting to leave at an alarming rate?
While it’s impossible for me to know every detail, what I do know is this: through all of the upheaval and all of the painful moments, I have learned lessons that will stay with me forever and will ultimately make me a much better coach.
Among the many things that I have learned in this experience, there is one that really sticks out that I want to share with you. Upon much reflection, I now know that over the past four years there were certain things that I thought had become automatic in our program because of our previous success. I’m not talking about “kicking back, not working and believing things would just happen” kind of automatic. Many players, coaches and support staff have worked very hard over the past four years. We achieved results in the classroom and on the court that most programs would be very pleased with.
Read the entire letter here.