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Bob Stoops Presser Notes: Getting Ready for the Sugar Bowl

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Stoops defended his program after a report that they missed arrests on a background check

NCAA Football: Oklahoma State at Oklahoma Mark D. Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Stoops and the Sooners are gearing up for the Auburn Tigers in the Sugar Bowl. It’s easy to forget after seeing them in the bright lights so often, but the Sooners are still students, and they’re in the midst of finals week. Being only seven months removed from my last set of finals, I vividly remember the fatigue, anxiety, and melancholy that is finals week. We wish all student-athletes (and just students) good luck.

The biggest news of the week was that Oklahoma sent two players to the Heisman ceremony in New York. A second set of news with potentially disturbing implications about one of those players, DeDe Westbrook, came out the same day.

Naturally, this was the biggest topic of the Stoops presser today. Despite a background check not turning up two separate incidents from several years ago, Stoops defended the recruiting process, the program, and Westbrook himself:

Domestic violence incidents have surrounded players like Joe Mixon, Frank Shannon, and Dorial Green-Beckham in the past several years. Few would argue that Bob Stoops and Joe Castiglione are not men of high character, but in the post-Briles landscape, college football coaches and administrators need to be as vigilant as ever. We’ve seen how vile and toxic a program can become, and how quickly it can happen.

It’s unclear when, who, or under which circumstances, but it does appear that the screening process has weeded out prospects before:

As for injury news, the Sooners will be down a defensive back in New Orleans:

Westbrook and Jordan Parker, on the other hand, should be good to go against the Tigers.

We’ll end on a bit of sad but touching news. Jimbo Elrod was a Sooner legend, a man who touched many people in the course of his life. Here are Bob Stoops’s comments on Elrod: