STILLWATER — Bob Stoops used to have a plethora of nicknames. Everything from Big Game Bob to Riverboat Gambler had been attached to him during the first half of his career at Oklahoma.
However, in recent seasons, those tag lines disappeared as Stoops had become more conservative in his approach to winning games. The gambler days had seemingly been long gone.
Yet, two days before Bedlam, Stoops seemed to know that he was going to need a game-changing play to knock off No. 7 Oklahoma State and he reverted back to his Big Game Bob days to find a little-used fake field goal that had not been seen in more than a decade.
It wound up turning the tide in the Sooners’ 33-24 victory Saturday over the Cowboys at Boone Pickens Stadium.
“I was so pumped this week when he came into my office on Thursday and recognized a fake that he had run earlier in his career,” Special Teams coach Jay Boulware said. “He was just on it. I guess he got his swag and started to feel it the end of the week. He was ready for it. That was something he brought to the table.”
Trailing 17-10, backup quarterbacks Kendal Thompson and Blake Bell drove the Sooners down the field into the Pokes territory. Bell’s pass to tight end Brannon Green was broken up in the back of the end zone on third down.
Field goal kicker Michael Hunnicutt trotted onto the field from the Pokes’ 8-yard line. Instead, Stoops called for the fake and Grant Bothun took the snap, rolled out to his left and spotted Hunnicutt in the corner of the end zone for a touchdown.
“I felt at that point, here we are on our third string quarterback and I just thought a field goal wasn’t going to be good enough,” Stoops said. “I knew we were going to need more than that. We had the numbers advantage out to that side and the way they were lining up and it worked out that way. Grant Bothun and Hunnicutt executed it very well.”