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Oklahoma Sooners Football players in the Marvel Cinematic Universe

Who is Captain America? Who is Thor?

2019 CinemaCon - Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures Special Presentation Photo by Gabe Ginsberg/WireImage

America wasn’t treated to March Madness, college football programs didn’t have spring practices, and the most “sports” thing on TV is a Michael Jordan documentary. But, that doesn’t mean Seth Oliveras and Kamiar Mehrabian can’t combine sports with the other thing they really enjoy: superheroes. Seth and Kamiar have selected a limited amount of Marvel Superheroes that compare with somebody in the Oklahoma Sooners football program.

In the famous words of Dale Gribble: “S’gooooooo!”


Tre Brown is Captain America

The moment Tre Brown chased down Baylor’s Chris Platt in the 2019 Big 12 Championship Game, I knew that man had a dose of super soldier serum running through his veins. In fact, that play exhibited two of the major reasons why he compares so well with the one and only Captain America. Not only did he display superhuman levels of speed, he also showed his never-say-die mentality. Being a great leader isn’t all about having cosmic-level powers, and both Brown and Steve Rogers are proof of that. Time after time these leaders find ways to overcome the odds, because no matter how often they’re counted out or how much they’re outnumbered by, they can do this all day.


Creed Humphrey is The Incredible Hulk

If there’s a more obvious comparison between a current Sooner and a Marvel superhero, I’d like to see it. When I think of the Incredible Hulk, I imagine the strongest form of brute force and intensity on the squad. Aside from having green skin, Creed Humphrey is practically the spitting image of Bruce Banner’s astonishing alter-ego. Standing at 6’5” and weighing in at over three bills, he’s an absolute behemoth at center. Since he first stepped on campus, his coaches and teammates have marveled (MARVELED, guys!) over his raw strength. Word of advice for defensive linemen: don’t make him angry.


Gabe Brkic is Ant-Man

There are actually a lot more comparisons than meet the eye between kicker Gabe Brkic and micro superhero Ant-Man. For starters, both stars are somewhat under-appreciated for their critical roles on the team, but when called upon in the clutch, they always come up huge. Five years after Thanos snapped half of the universe out of existence, it was Scott Lang who presented the quantum realm time-traveling possibilities to the Avengers. When Oklahoma needed one more score to take the lead over Baylor in Waco, it was Brkic who lifted the Sooners over the hump en route to the greatest comeback in program history. Also, both share a sense of humor that makes them a fan favorite and must-see TV.


Charleston Rambo is Star-Lord

Peter Quill once used a dance-off to save the galaxy, and if there’s a Sooner who could pull off such a feat, it would probably be Charleston Rambo. It’s unclear if his arsenal of moves on the dance floor is as deep as Star-Lord’s, but his moves on the field are as vast as anybody’s on Terra. Also, it takes an already sweet name to be a Guardian of the Galaxy, and Rambo has to be the coolest moniker this side of the Milky Way. Beyond that, both Quill and Rambo do their best work when accompanied by their star-studded ensembles. You can’t have the Guardians franchise without Rocket, Groot, Gamora and Drax, and it wouldn’t be a wide receiver unit without, well, other wide receivers. With fancy footwork and a sweet calling card, making this comparison was a no-brainer.


Lincoln Riley is Doctor Strange

He may be young compared to his peers in the field, but it’s no secret Lincoln Riley is a master at his craft. Before Dr. Stephen Strange became the Sorcerer Supreme, he still had one of the brightest and most gifted minds in the world. Both Riley and Strange have the ability to recall nearly every move they’ve ever made. Oklahoma’s head coach remembers each play he’s ever called, and uses that skill to re-shape the future. Manipulating time isn’t all that brings these two supers together, however. The Palace on the Prairie is for Riley what the Sanctum Sanctorum is for Strange — an ancient headquarters where they devise plans in service of the greater good. If one were to give Riley a portal opening sling ring, the Sooners’ offense would truly be unstoppable.


Delarrin Turner-Yell is Iron Man

Just like Tony Stark, Turner-Yell needs his protective gear and shell to do the damage that he does in action. Just like Iron Man’s ability to fly and wreak havoc on enemies, DTY uses his frame as an essential heat-seeking missile as he takes a downhill approach to defense. Similar to Stark’s recreation of his suit and power source multiple times to keep him alive and thriving, DTY’s injury is a minor setback for something that will result in him being more explosive while still playing with reckless abandon; something that Mike Leach once preached about playing defense like pirates. Mission is: Seek and Destroy.


Marquis Hayes is Thor

Thor is a warrior, a protector of his realm, and has a hot-headed recklessness about him that has seen him get in trouble and eventually sent to Earth. Most of the same could be said for Marquis Hayes; The man stands at 6’5, 345 lbs. and has a complete mean streak in him. Such as Thor’s duty was to also protect Asgard, it is Hayes’ duty to protect (presumably) Spencer Rattler with a type of viciousness that’s unrelenting. Although he may disappoint his coach at times for bone-headed penalties after the play, just like Odin (Thor’s father), Lincoln Riley ultimately accepts the type of player he’s getting in Hayes.


Trejan Bridges is T’Challa, the Black Panther

As possibly the most athletic superhero of the Marvel Universe, the T’Challa already has the power of the Black Panther via an herb (...) that grants him incredible speed, athleticism, agility, and overall ability. Put the Black Panther in his specialized suit, he’s even more effective, granting him more sustainability, power, and heightened senses. Trejan Bridges, a dynamic athlete with incredible instincts on the football field fits the mold of T’Challa. The most impressive part of Bridges’ athleticism similar to the Black Panther is his ability to manipulate his body’s movement while he’s mid-air — very catlike! Both T’Challa and Trejan are always unafraid of a challenge to test their own metal regardless how tough their opponents or task may be. At the end of the day, both people are incredibly calm and have a confident demeanor about themselves, but once it’s time for action, look out: Wakanda Forever.


Jaden Davis is Spider Man

Spider Man is one of the younger contributors of the Marvel super heroes, just like Jaden Davis was during the 2019-20 football season. Unlike Davis, Parker received his powers from a radioactive spider bite, but that’s really where several of the contrasts end. The Spider Man is a small framed athlete similar to Jaden Davis, but both throw their body into action without care for what it will ultimately do to them. Both Davis and Spider Man have incredible athleticism, dashing through the climate of danger and constant collision and at times, delivering the substantial knockout blow to their foes. Davis, being a young DB to see the field and be effective has a sort of Spidey Sense— coming from a pure athletic pedigree of St. Thomas Aquinas, he is well versed on the education of what he’s doing and did not need extensive research or coaching on impacting the field early on. Davis is likely to contribute for Grinch and the Oklahoma Sooners for years to come after the roots of his freshman year: With great power, comes great responsibility.

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