TUCSON, ARIZ. Mike Stoops, the younger brother of Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops, was introduced Saturday as the new head coach at Arizona and promised a return to the glory days of bowl games and all-out defense.
"We're going to be ready to play when we start in September," he said. "We're going to have a defense that attacks people from a bunch of different ways, and we're going to have an offense that's going to spread people out and make them defend the whole field."
The younger Stoops, the top-ranked Sooners' co-defensive coordinator, inherits a team that went 2-10 and finished last in the Pac-10 for the first time.
But Stoops, 41, believes good coaches can win anywhere, a view reinforced by six years at Kansas State, a former have-not which has become a perennial bowl team. He cited Washington State as an example of what could be done in the intensely competitive Pac-10.
The secret was instilling a winning attitude in the players and coaching preparation, said Stoops, who believes Arizona has the facilities, attractiveness and athletes to reverse its string of four losing seasons.
"Every team I've ever been associated with has been as well-prepared as any team we played," he said.
Miami, Fla., defensive backs coach Mark Stoops reportedly is leaving the Hurricanes to join his brother's coaching staff at Arizona.
Mike Stoops will help coach Oklahoma in its Big 12 title game Saturday against Kansas State, but will return to Tucson after that and not stay with the Sooners for their bowl game.