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Oklahoma Sooners Football Hot Links: Early kickoffs, the year of Lincoln Riley, and more!

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Also, Oklahoma’s 2019 class sits atop the Rivals team rankings.

NCAA Football: Rose Bowl-Oklahoma vs Georgia Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Happy Friday, friends and fans!

For the past year, the University of Oklahoma has gone through some major changes at the top. From Bob Stoops retiring last June to President David Boren announcing his retirement, now Assistant AD of Football Operations Matt McMillen retires after 19 years on the job.

McMillen started his Sooner career in 1999 — the same year Bob Stoops became head coach — and served as Stoops’ right-hand man for nearly two decades. Turnover is bound to happen in any program, but Oklahoma’s track record of sustained excellence in its leadership positions bodes well for the future of the athletic department as a whole.

Now onto this week’s Friday edition of Hot Links! Marcus Hicks picks the Sooners, Lincoln Riley’s first year as head coach was a major success, and today is World Oceans Day!

OU Links

  • What’s better than a Bob Stoops Haiku in honor of a license plate with Stoops’ name on it? Nothing, my friends. Nothing is better than this, and it’s the runaway winner of the contest.
  • Class of 2019 four star defensive end Marcus Hicks committed to the OU. The commitment places Oklahoma Sooners in the top spot of the Rivals team rankings, and the Sooners trail only Alabama in the 247Composite team rankings, as well. Welcome to the Wave, Marcus! Boomer!
  • Lincoln Riley spent his one-year anniversary as head coach at an alumni event in Dallas surrounded by Sooner fans. With one full year to look back on, it appears the transition from Bob Stoops to Lincoln Riley couldn’t have been orchestrated any better.
  • When you sit back and reflect on it, Lincoln Riley’s first year as head coach of Oklahoma went about as well as anyone could have realistically predicted. With recruiting taking off, a stable coaching staff in place, and one of the best athletic administrations squarely behind him, Riley’s future looks awfully bright.
  • By the numbers, how did Lincoln Riley’s first year as the leader of the Oklahoma Sooners go? It’s quite remarkable to see when it’s broken down like this. For many coaches, it takes years to accomplish what Riley pulled off in a season.
  • AD Joe Castiglione was as puzzled as anybody about the early kickoff times on Oklahoma’s schedule, but Big 12 Commissioner Bob Bowlsby says it’s just “OU’s time” to get stuck with the early contests. You vex me greatly, Bob.

Around the Sports World

  • The Washington Capitals are Stanley Cup Champions! Amid all the celebration in D.C., check out T.J. Oshie talk about his father, who struggles with Alzheimer’s disease. Powerful stuff.

Stick to Sports!

  • Today is World Oceans Day, and one way you can celebrate is by making small changes to your everyday decisions and the items you use. Recycling and proper waste management is still something many people don’t pay enough attention to, and that can lead to incidents like this. This seahorse’s environment has been polluted by waste that was improperly managed, and it’s representative of a worldwide issue that’s growing by the day. For more information and tips on how you can help make a positive difference, take the #CleanSeas pledge.

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