Happy Thursday, friends and fans!
The XFL regular season officially kicks off this weekend, and former Oklahoma Sooners QB Landry Jones has teamed up with Bob Stoops for the second time in his playing career. However, before he was presented this opportunity to join the Dallas Renegades, there was a period when it looked like the game was behind the former Pittsburgh backup for good. Brendan Meyer of ESPN chronicled his journey from the football field to driving a dump truck before finding his way back to the gridiron.
Landry Jones went from Pittsburgh Steelers backup to Fort Worth construction worker. Now, in his third act as a founding star of the XFL, he's giving football one last try.— Brendan Meyer (@Brendan_Meyer13) February 6, 2020
My story for @espnhttps://t.co/pglTvhIBXH pic.twitter.com/XdRCxynCwh
It’s a phenomenal read and an equally insightful look inside the reality that Jones and many other players often face when transitioning from a professional career as an athlete to a more grounded existence. It’s also eye-opening to learn about how his perspective of the game has evolved through his real world struggles.
I for one can hardly wait to watch what Jones and the Renegades and the entire XFL as a whole looks like in action. Reportedly, the veteran QB has been limited in practice recently for a knee issue, but it doesn’t appear overtly serious as of now. To check out Dallas’ first game against the St. Louis BattleHawks, tune in Sunday, Feb. 9 at 4 p.m. CT on ESPN.
Now for today’s Hot Links! OU Softball is back, and more!
- If you’re looking for tickets to OU’s basketball game vs. No. 13 West Virginia, our friends at StubHub have you covered. You can find them here! At the current moment, they can be purchased for as low as $6.
- Oklahoma Softball begins today at the Puerto Vallarta College Challenge in PV, Mexico. The Sooners’ first opponent is Nevada scheduled for a 6 p.m. CT start and will be streaming live on FloSoftball (for a price), or you can listen to the game for free on The Franchise in OKC on 103.3 FM or 1560 AM. Good luck, ladies! Boomer!
- Speaking of the softball team, this year’s squad says it’s unaffected by the high expectations and standards set by the previous championship winning group of seniors. By now, these Sooners have taken ownership of the culture instilled by Patty Gasso and crew that’s been established during her 25-year reign over the program, writes The Norman Transcript’s Joe Buettner.
- OU Insider’s RJ Young shared his three biggest takeaways on Oklahoma’s 2020 recruiting class as it was finalized on Wednesday.
- Sooners Wire’s Kegan Reneau broke down Oklahoma’s recruiting class by the numbers in regards to the major recruiting services. While there is some variance between the likes of 247 Sports, Rivals and ESPN as there typically is, the overall consensus pits the Sooners with an above-average signing group, but not exactly “elite”. Still, defensive needs were met, and that’s probably most important for the short-term (and long-term) trajectory of the program.
- Sooner Baseball’s deep pool of pitchers just became a little bit deeper as it was announced on Wednesday that senior lefty transfer Brad Demco, formerly of Sam Houston State, will be eligible to suit up for Oklahoma this spring. This is excellent news for the Sooners, who are looking to make a jump as a program this season. OU Daily’s Jordan Gledhill has more details.
- Oklahoma is adding a Kohl’s Kicking Camp alum in the form of Bishop McGuinness standout Zach Schmit. For context, Gabe Brkic is a product of the same camp.
- After swapping jerseys following the Kansas City Chiefs’ Super Bowl LIV victory, San Francisco 49ers RB Raheem Mostert is returning Damien Williams’ jersey so that he and his family can keep it for themselves. Much respect all around.
Contemplated putting this on eBay but this belongs to YOU and yours! You did your thing. Hand this down for generations! PROUD OF YOU BRO! Much love. #undraftedRBs @TooLoose26 pic.twitter.com/RL4oIgtQhr— Raheem Mostert (@RMos_8Ball) February 6, 2020
Around the Sports World
- The Woj Bomb strikes again. On Thursday, the Golden State Warriors agreed to send D’Angelo Russell to the Minnesota Timberwolves for Andrew Wiggins, among other moving parts within the trade.
Golden State has agreed to trade D'Angelo Russell to Minnesota for a deal that includes Andrew Wiggins, a 2021 protected first-round pick and a 2022 second-round pick, league sources tell ESPN. Warriors will send Jacob Evans and Omari Spellman to Timberwolves too.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) February 6, 2020
- On Wednesday, the Miami Heat acquired Andre Iguodala from the Memphis Grizzlies for Justise Winslow. The NBA Trade Deadline will come to a head Thursday afternoon, so expect at least a few more moves around the association to take place before it’s all said and done.
- WR Antonio Brown issued a public apology to his former Pittsburgh Steelers teammates and the organization as a whole for being a distraction towards the end of his time there. He has a lot of making up to do, but this is a solid start if he wants to return to the league.
- Former Texas Tech Red Raiders QB Jett Duffey has been denied admission to Central Michigan amid a Title IX violation. If he decides to enter the NCAA Transfer Portal again, he would be immediately eligible to play wherever he is accepted.
- The TCU Horned Frogs officially announced the addition of Jerry Kill to it’s extended off-field coaching staff on Wednesday. The former Minnesota Golden Gophers head coach will work under the title of special assistant to the head coach in charge of the offense.
Stick to Sports!
- Deep inside a Bosnian-Herzegovinian cave, scientists have been tracking the movement patterns of blind, pale salamanders called olms. Apparently, one particularly sedentary individual exhibited zero movement for over seven years until recently. I’m sure there are humans that will say they can relate at some level. I’d even say some college football programs, too. Cough *Texas Football* cough. Sorry, I might have a cold or something.
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