NORMAN — Bad break, right?
First, Oklahoma goes up to Manhattan, Kan., against the greatest coach in the history of the game, against a team that had turned its season around, that few thought it could win, in which it entered a 5 1/2-point underdog and won 41-31.
Next, the Sooners went to Boone Pickens Stadium a 10-point underdog by the time it all kicked off, lost its starting quarterback, lost confidence in its back-up quarterback and returned with the only quarterback on the squad to be a starter, back-up and third-teamer this season, and needing a two-minute drive in less than two minutes, Blake Bell brought the Sooners back.
Now OU must return to the scene of a most difficult memory, where the Nick Saban-coached Tigers of LSU ended the Sooners’ national championship dreams 10 years ago to face the Nick Saban-coached Crimson Tide, who everybody still believes to be the nation’s best team, who would surely beat Auburn in a best three-of-five or four-of-seven if that was the way football worked. And, oh yeah, Alabama’s a 15-point favorite.
Thanks a lot.
Instead, it is the best of all possible worlds for a Sooner team that was moribund and listless and 7-2 (and seemingly going on 8-4) following an embarrassing 41-12 loss at Baylor Nov. 7.
Indeed, this is a case of everything coming together.
One, the Sooners are playing with house money. When was the last time they were ever playing with house money.
Everybody should have taken a 10-2 regular season when it all began the last week of August. And nobody figured the Sooners would ever get there when they stood 7-2 with three games remaining, two of them against the Wildcats and Pokes.
Now, there’s just no losing. Also, OU might not lose.