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Oklahoma Sooners Football Hot Links: USA Today releases earnings for college coaches, OU moves two hoops games to Oklahoma City, and more!

Oklahoma’s basketball games against Mississippi State and Texas Tech have been moved to Chesapeake Energy Arena.

NCAA Football: West Virginia at Oklahoma Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

Happy Tuesday, friends and fans!

USA Today made its annual salary check for all FBS head coaches, and the Oklahoma Sooners’ third-year man Lincoln Riley is ninth overall from a national perspective.

Usual suspects Dabo Swinny and Nick Saban find themselves at the top of this list, and considering all they’ve accomplished at Clemson and Alabama, it’s well-earned. Then there are coaches like Jim Harbaugh, Tom Herman and Jeff Brohm, who have not been to the College Football Playoff nor have even finished atop their respective conference standings since being hired to their current gigs. Texas A&M’s Jimbo Fisher could also be added to that bunch, but he’s at least a little different because he has a national championship on his resume from Florida State.

As the graphic notes, some of these numbers (including the ones for Swinney, Herman and Brohm) do not represent annually-recurring payment.

Around the Big 12, the coaches are ranked as follows:

  1. Tom Herman — $6,750,000
  2. Lincoln Riley — $6,384,462
  3. Mike Gundy — $5,125,000
  4. Gary Patterson — $4,900,778
  5. Matt Rhule — $4,113,734
  6. Matt Campbell — $3,600,000
  7. Neal Brown — $3,055,000
  8. Matt Wells — $2,803,300
  9. Les Miles — $2,775,000
  10. Chris Klieman — $2,300,000

With Riley firmly a member of the six million dollar club, it’s interesting to parallel that with another head coach’s salary on a different level — the NFL. In 2018, the Dallas Cowboys’ Jason Garrett hauled in $6 million (current contract is 5 years/$30 million) himself. If that’s a job that could even theoretically lure Riley away from the Palace on the Prairie, Jerry Jones would have to step his game up in a big way. I’m not saying, I’m just saying. Hell, Jerry would probably have to add an additional $6 million just for the hassle of having to work for that family.

At any rate, Lincoln Riley deserves to have the third-highest salary in college football as things currently stand. With that in mind, it’s reasonable to expect OU’s administration to continue tinkering with his deal as each season passes, especially if he starts winning national championships.

Not onto today’s Hot Links! OU’s 2020 regular season football schedule has been released, Alex Grinch isn’t interested in becoming a head coach right now, something strange happened to the clocks at DKR Stadium last Saturday and more!

OU Links

  • In case you missed it, early on Tuesday morning Oklahoma unveiled its 2020 regular season football schedule. The non-conference portion should be about as manageable as this season’s, but that trip to Army will definitely be quite the visual spectacle.
  • Speaking of scheduling, the OU men’s basketball team will play two of its games — Mississippi State and Texas Tech — at Chesapeake Energy Arena, home of the Oklahoma City Thunder. This is a nice development for the season ticket holders living in Oklahoma City or northern suburbs (such as Edmond), and if the Sooners are rolling, I’d expect some nice crowds.
  • On Monday, Jalen Hurts was named the Big 12 Offensive Player of the Week for his nearly flawless performance against West Virginia. If he keeps this up, he’ll certainly be worthy of both newcomer and offensive player of the year honors, but I’m not sure if that can even happen.
  • Speaking of Hurts, the senior dual-threat checked in just behind LSU’s Joe Burrow in ESPN’s Week 9 Heisman Watch. Both QBs figure to be in New York come December for the trophy presentation.
  • RJ Young from OU Insider details Kansas State’s statistically stout defense and how that will pose all kinds of challenges for Oklahoma’s offense.
  • The Norman Transcript’s Tyler Palmateer wrote about LB Nik Bonitto and how his role on the field has increased with the news dropping on Monday about Jon-Michael Terry out for the remainder of the season.
  • Speaking of defense, Alex Grinch has almost totally flipped the script on the defensive side of the ball for the Sooners in just under a year in Norman. If he keeps this up, he’ll undoubtedly have other programs asking for his services as their head coach, but for now, a role like that doesn’t interest him, writes Vic Reynolds of the OU Daily.
  • Baker Mayfield has never been 2-4 at any level of his football playing career until this season with the Cleveland Browns. Not only does that give him a bigger chip on his shoulder, it’s made him angry. The former Heisman Trophy winner and No. 1 overall pick plans to channel that displeasure into production on the field.
  • Speaking of Sooner Hoops, former Oklahoma star Buddy Hield was signed to an extension by the Sacramento Kings just in time with the 2019-20 NBA season tipping off tonight. The terms of the deal were undisclosed upon announcement.

Around the Sports World

  • Les Miles and the Kansas Jayhawks are having the Big 12 look into a potential misuse of the clock in the final minute during last week’s loss to Texas. In more than one instance, it appeared that the game clock did not start running when it was supposed to, which would have allowed the Longhorns to run an additional play or two. Austin home-cooking?
  • Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr announced on Tuesday that All-Star guard Klay Thompson is unlikely to play this season after suffering a torn ACL during the NBA Finals this past summer.
  • The Los Angeles Lakers have had bettors place more money on them to win the 2019-20 NBA Finals than any other team. Having LeBron James and Anthony Davis will do that sort of thing, but the field is looking mighty strong this season, especially in the West.
  • The New England Patriots have traded a second round draft pick to the Atlanta Falcons for veteran WR Mohamed Sanu. The Pats have had to shuffle the receiving corps a lot this season, but Sanu gives Bill Belichick’s team quality depth and valuable experience.
  • Ladies and gentlemen, it is an honor and a privilege to present to you the one and only, Mr. Mike Leach. Enjoy.

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