The Norman Transcript

Sports

December 23, 2012

Handing out a few well deserved Christmas gifts early this year

NORMAN — What’s this, Christmas two days early. Can it possibly be?

Actually no.

But let’s pretend it is and let’s further pretend that we could simply wish gifts to those who may or may not want them, yet need or deserve them.

To Bob Stoops, the realization he’ll be treated much better in this and other spaces the moment he begins to more resemble the shoot-from-the-hip swashbuckler who took the job in 1999, answering questions as well as he possibly could rather than playing keep-away from his interrogators whenever his reply might threaten to prove interesting, enlightening or, egads, harshly truthful about some aspect of his program that’s clear as a bell to everybody except maybe the Sooner head coach.

To prep sports in this town, the continued frenzy of support that now encompasses athletics at both Norman High and Norman North. The Clash crowds on both sides of the court were amazing and, maybe more importantly, other sports (like wrestling) and events (like any time NHS and North don’t play each other, but somebody else) have been drawing better, too. It may have began with North’s trip to the Class 6A championship game, but that it’s lit a fire under both schools is truly fantastic.

To Sherri Coale, at least one more player on the roster, like Kodi Morrison a few years ago, even if all the new face might ever do is soak up a little garbage time, because every little bit helps, and no more injuries, sprains, bruises or even sore throats. Gene Hackman may have played with four for a few minutes in “Hoosiers” but getting through the Big 12 with eight is going to be a Herculean chore.

To the Oklahoma City Thunder, only more of the same. Continued steady improvement from Russell Westbrook at the point, continued dramatic improvement from Serge Ibaka at forward.

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