Mark Stoops’ Kentucky Wildcats had plenty of exciting plays in a 59-14 rout of UT Martin, but the Cats’ head coach admitted Monday he would like to see more consistency from his team going forward.

When asked if there would be any points of emphasis for Kentucky this week, Stoops replied: “Just more consistent. We still need to play faster defensively. There’s things we need to play quicker and trigger faster.”

The head coach was especially critical of his defense, which allowed the Skyhawks to score two fourth quarter touchdowns to close out Saturday’s game. Those touchdown drives accounted for 151 of UTM’s 398 yards for the game (the other 247 yards were earned over the span of 10 drives).

Stoops was not pleased with the way the defense seemed to let its foot off the gas on those two drives with a healthy lead in hand.

There were some things in the run game, some of our fits, just not striking people, being as violent as we need to be,” Stoops said of his defense’s fourth quarter effort. “So there’s a lot of areas to improve, and we will.”

The Cats allowed the Skyhawks to rush for 183 yards, and UK’s head coach said he was “discouraged” with the way his team finished Saturday’s game, citing a potential lack of depth on the defensive side of the ball as a reason for the Cats late letdown on the scoreboard. He implored his players to “step up and compete” for spots on the field, rather than accepting playing time in a blowout.

“To give up two touchdowns and a bunch of yards the last four possessions is something that we can’t do and we won’t do,” he said.

Stoops, who progressed through the coaching ranks as a defensive assistant before arriving in Lexington, has a good idea of how to keep his defense sharp for four quarters this week when the Ohio Bobcats come to town. The key: getting back to fundamentals.

“I wanted to play very fundamental,” Stoops said. “I didn’t want to have to scheme a million different ways to stop (UTM). Our guys need to learn how to play football, learn how to play blocks, learn how to have proper fits, learn how to do tackles and do the fundamental things.”

Kentucky will get back to the basics in practice this week, and will have another chance to post a strong performance for all four quarters against the Bobcats on Saturday. Ohio managed just 17 points against Kent State last week, committing four turnovers despite registering a narrow victory.

The Cats will have their chances to make more big plays in Commonwealth Stadium Saturday. But no matter how many sacks or interceptions UK records, Stoops will have just one thing on his mind: consistency.

They were excited and ready to go (last week),” Stoops said. “Now we just have to be consistent.”