How’s it going, everyone?
In the world of college football, it’s never too early to look ahead and prognosticate on the top matchups and juiciest storylines. There are sure to be plenty of those to go around in 2019 in games involving Big 12 teams. 247 Sports’ Jordan James wrote about the 10 biggest games with Big 12 teams next season, and the Oklahoma Sooners are involved in four of them.
The season opener against the Houston Cougars just became a heck of a lot more interesting over the last week since Dana Holgorsen left West Virginia to take over in H-Town. The two obvious contests of intrigue are the two rivalry games against Texas and Oklahoma State. Meanwhile, Matt Campbell’s return to Norman in early November could be a sneaky great game if the Cyclones are cooking by that point in the year.
I don’t know about y’all, but I’m ready for this offseason to go by as quickly as this past season did. Is it August yet?
Now, on to some scorching Hot Links! For Joe Castiglione, keeping his coaches from being poached is just part of the job, Bobby Evans is reportedly leaning towards staying at Oklahoma, Russell Westbrook trolls Lance Stephenson and more!
- It’s the question that’s been asked ever since Kyler Murray was drafted and signed to play for the Oakland A’s — what should he do now? The NFL is going to be interested in his abilities and potential, but he already has a contract and a bright future in baseball. Can he actually play both? Does he even want to play both? Does his heart desire one sport over the other? There’s a lot for him to consider.
- Now this is interesting. If you’re familiar with Gil Brandt, you understand that 1. He operates with a lot of information at his disposal and 2. He doesn’t throw things around lightly. This, of course, doesn’t have me or anyone else convinced that he’s coming back, but it certainly grabs the attention.
Two things I wouldn't be shocked if they happened in 2019:— Gil Brandt (@Gil_Brandt) January 3, 2019
1. Kliff Kingsbury was an NFL HC
2. Kyler Murray returned to OU
- The parallels between Lincoln Riley and Bob Stoops’ careers continue to grow, and Tulsa World’s Guerin Emig wrote about how Joe Castiglione is being just as proactive with his current head football coach as he was with his former one.
- OU Insider’s Joey Helmer wrote about Oklahoma’s starting left tackle in 2018, Bobby Evans, and why many believe he’s leaning towards returning for his final year of eligibility.
- In case you missed it, check out Austin’s quick recap of Oklahoma’s loss to Kansas on Wednesday night. The Sooners battled through a hostile environment, and made several runs to keep their heads above water, but ultimately didn’t have enough to overcome the powerful Jayhawks.
- Following the game in The Phog, News OK’s Joe Mussatto noted how Kansas head coach Bill Self came away impressed by Oklahoma’s veteran players, especially the two grad transfer guards.
- Spencer Rattler is preparing for the All-American Bowl this weekend, and he wants everybody to know about the hard work he’s put in over the last two months. He’s gained 20 pounds in the gym and has improved on his overall speed and agility.
- Speaking of high school All-American games, the Under Armour All-America Game starts at 5 p.m. CT this evening and will feature five OU signees.
- Sherri Coale and the Oklahoma women’s basketball team rallied for the huge comeback win over Texas Tech in the Big 12 opener. The Sooners are now 5-7 on the season, 1-0 in conference play.
- Arizona head coach Kevin Sumlin is hiring former Sooner running back DeMarco Murray onto his coaching staff to coach running backs. Both Sumlin and Murray were on campus in ‘06 and ’07 when Sumlin was co-offensive coordinator and wide receivers coach.
Around the Sports World
- Now that West Virginia is on the head coaching market, who are the top candidates the Mountaineers should consider? Could Rich Rodriguez make a return to the country roads?
- Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, California is quite possibly the worst site to host the College Football Playoff National Championship. The only thing going for itself are the cheap ticket prices, but that’s mostly because nobody wants to go there.
- The Oklahoma City Thunder traveled west to take on the Los Angeles Lakers on Wednesday night, and during pregame introductions, Paul George received a heaping helping of boos from the crowd, probably for turning them down and electing to stay in OKC. For the record, Thunder got the ‘W’, and George finished with 37 points, four rebounds and two assists.
Staples Center just booed Paul George as loud as I've heard them boo anyone. pic.twitter.com/mhYr0UDoNJ— Harrison Faigen (@hmfaigen) January 3, 2019
- Russell Westbrook is a treasure. Check him out as he used Lance Stephenson’s air guitar celebration right in front of him, then later winks and blows him a kiss. The man’s troll game is way too strong.
Russ did Lance's celebration in front of him, winked and blew a kiss pic.twitter.com/hcERQkJIRm— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) January 3, 2019
- Watch this epic chase down block beautifully executed... minus the blocker smashing his head against the backboard and going down like a sack of potatoes. Just so you know, the player is OK and returned to the court moments later.
Stick to Sports!
- If you’ve seen the Netflix movie ‘Bird Box’ starring Sandra Bullock, then you’re already familiar with what some are calling the ‘Bird Box Challenge’. Basically, people are going out and about while blindfolded for 24 hours. It can be quite dangerous to the person blindfolded and others around them, but I’m sure they know that already. If you know someone who thinks this is a good idea, just tell them to stop right there. Really, people?
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