The Norman Transcript

Sports

September 26, 2013

Many reasons to play tough schedule

NORMAN — Oklahoma has made it a point to play at least one non-conference game against a traditional power over the last dozen years. Saturday’s game with Notre Dame completes a home-and-home series that adds to a long list the Sooners have played over that span.

There were the games with Alabama in 2002 and 2003, UCLA in 2003 and 2005, Oregon in 2004 and 2006, Washington in 2006 and 2008, Miami in 2007 and 2009, and Florida State in 2010 and 2011. Series with Tennessee, Ohio State, LSU and Nebraska will follow over the next years.

Undoubtedly, playing a tough schedule will help the Sooners when strength of schedule becomes a major component of the college football playoff set to begin in 2014.

“If you look at the BCS formula, it’s been a real positive for us. All things being equal, usually we’ve gotten the nod. I think the large part of that component of it has been us playing a difficult — maybe more difficult than someone else — non-conference schedule,” OU coach Bob Stoops said. “I think it’s helped build our program to a degree that if you’re gonna be one of those types of teams, you ought to play those types of teams. Obviously, we haven’t hidden from it.”

But there’s another reason OU has shown a willingness to play major powers in the non-conference schedule.

“This why you come here. You come here to play in big games,” OU offensive lineman Bronson Irwin said. “You play Oklahoma State and Texas every year and those are obviously big games. But you throw in a non-conference game like Notre Dame, or we played against Florida State twice and it was big. It’s very enticing to a young recruit that wants to come in and play against the best.”

Extra time: Oklahoma was off last week, giving it an extra week to prepare for the Notre Dame game. Having the additional practice time can be a blessing or a curse.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Sports
  • 498415327SB20543_Sky_Shock How Paris got her groove back

    TULSA — It looked like it came easily to Courtney Paris. The minute she stepped foot on the campus at the University of Oklahoma in 2005, it seemed she was already an All-American and destroying the competition in the Big 12 and across the ...

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • Sooners will have to do the right thing eventually

    Don’t read anything into the non-suspension suspension Oklahoma leveled at true freshman running back Joe Mixon Wednesday....

    July 31, 2014

  • In this case, Sooner fans can rest easy

    OKLAHOMA CITY — The Sooner Caravan ended its summer run at the Jim Thorpe Museum and Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame Wednesday night. OU coach Bob Stoops did not take questions, but one of the major topics was the $370 million renovation to ...

    July 31, 2014

  • Three Tigers competing for quarterback

    While some teams have had questions surrounding the quarterback position in recent years, Norman High has seen relative stability. Thanks to a three-year run by Zach Long followed up by Jakcob Dean’s ascendance last season, the Tigers ...

    July 31, 2014

  • Indians trade Justin Masterson to Cardinals

    CLEVELAND — The Indians had little choice but to give up Justin Masterson. The trade doesn’t mean they’re going to surrender the season....

    July 31, 2014

  • Cowboys sign tackle Smith to 8-year extension

    OXNARD, Calif. — Tyron Smith has a new contract that will probably make him the most important blocker for the next Dallas quarterback after Tony Romo....

    July 31, 2014

  • Quarterback questions abound with big stars gone from SEC offenses

    MONTGOMERY, Ala. — Quarterback battles and signal-caller questions abound in the Southeastern Conference going into preseason camps around the league. Big names, not so much....

    July 31, 2014

  • Jones says Brent out of rehab, NFL question next

    OXNARD, Calif. — Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones says former defensive tackle Josh Brent is out of rehabilitation and could have his future with the NFL resolved before the team leaves training camp in California in two weeks....

    July 31, 2014

  • Ives to crew chief for Dale Jr. in 2015

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. — There was no shortage of candidates to replace Steve Letarte as Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s crew chief The list of applicants was long, but Hendrick Motorsports has always liked to groom its own talent. So the organization ...

    July 31, 2014

  • Gustafson wants Gordon’s team focused on Chase

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Jeff Gordon viewed his Brickyard 400 win as a turning point for his race team. Confidence had been building with every strong run, but his victory at Indianapolis Motor Speedway pushed his crew to another level. It was ...

    July 31, 2014

Facebook