The Norman Transcript

OU Sports

November 6, 2012

Vote progressive; vote Stoops

(Continued)

NORMAN —

That, friends, might not be an answer right of Youngstown.

“When I got here, coaches were asking me if I cared about the length of their hair, care about tattoos, care about a pierced ear,” Stoops said. “As long as they got to class and worked hard and (were) good kids, I don’t care about what they look like. It’s the same as the other stuff. As long as they’re doing it responsibly.”

Listening to him, there were two thoughts.

One, this is good and charming Stoops. This is Stoops as Pete Townshend and Roger Daltrey, proclaiming “The kids are all right.”

Agree or disagree with him, for a change, he was actually talking about himself. Man, the guy would get a better ride from a nation of sports writers and college football pundits if he offered more of this more often.

Two, you have to feel better about the program knowing this is where Stoops is on such things.

Come to Oklahoma, go about your business the right way and be yourself.

Sounds like a pitch.

“He doesn’t see kids from the outside. He kind of sees them from the inside, what their talent level is, what kind of person they are and I think that’s just a testament to him, that he doesn’t really care where you come from or what kind of tattoos you have, or how you where your hair,” quarterback Landry Jones said.

Some may hear him or read this and have their suspicions confirmed, that Stoops tolerance for individuality is somehow to blame for a rash of discipline issues. But that rash no longer plagues this team and about the sins, whatever they are, that continue to sideline Jaz Reynolds, Trey Franks and Quentin Hayes, there’s no evidence their suspensions are in any way rooted in the trio simply trying to express themselves.

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