Happy Monday, friends and fans!
This past weekend, the top-ranked Oklahoma Sooners softball team (33-0) swept the Texas Longhorns with three consecutive run-rule victories. Dating back to the shortened 2020 season, OU has now won 40 straight games, and has also claimed 21 consecutive wins over its Red River rival.
On Friday night, Oklahoma sealed game one with this walk-off three-run homer from sophomore Mackenzie Donihoo.
On Saturday, junior shortstop Grace Lyons clinched the series with this bloop RBI single into center field.
Things didn’t get any easier for Texas on Sunday. Even though the Longhorns had just one less hit than the Sooners on the day, Mike White’s team was ultimately blanked by Patty Gasso’s juggernaut of a squad.
Up next, Oklahoma takes a trip to Athens for a double-header meeting with the Georgia Bulldogs on Tuesday, April 20. Game one is set for 4:30 p.m. CT, and game two is scheduled for 7 p.m. that same night. You can watch all the action between OU and UGA on the SEC Network.
Now onto this week’s Monday edition of Hot Links! OU tabbed as betting favorite to win Big 12, Isaiah Coe’s strength impresses at practice, Bam buzzer-beats Brooklyn and more!
- According to Sports Betting Dime, OU has opened as the odds-on favorite (-125) to win a seventh consecutive Big 12 Championship Game. The Iowa State Cyclones (+250) and Texas Longhorns (+350) have the next best odds to win the conference title.
- On the basketball front, Porter Moser has struck gold for the second time in as many days, as Duke Blue Devils guard Jordan Goldwire is headed to Norman. Goldwire was an ACC All-Defensive Team performer in 2020-21, and his experience at the point guard position will prove invaluable as Bijan Cortes and C.J. Noland continue to develop. This comes less than 24 hours after Eastern Washington brothers Tanner and Jacob Groves both committed to Oklahoma from the NCAA Transfer Portal.
- Since Alex Grinch arrived in Norman to take over as Oklahoma’s defensive coordinator and safeties coach, the secondary has steadily improved from both a talent and performance standpoint. Today, the current group of DBs intend to continue building on those trends going into the 2021 season. SI Sooners’ John Hoover has more.
- D-line coach Calvin Thibodeaux recently raved about the power junior DT Isaiah Coe has displayed this spring. Look out for Coe (No. 94) in the trenches this weekend during the Oklahoma Spring Game.
Calvin Thibodeaux on JC transfer DT Isaiah Coe: "He's probably the most powerful guy in the group, and he's just figuring out (that) he don't know what he don't know. But he's he's flashing, and I'm really excited about him."#Sooners— John E. Hoover (@johnehoover) April 19, 2021
- On Saturday, the OU women’s gymnastics team came up just short of claiming the program’s fifth NCAA National Championship. The Sooners finished in second place behind the Michigan Wolverines. All things considered, it was still a great season for head coach K.J. Kindler and her 2021 squad.
Boomer Sooner, always ☝️ pic.twitter.com/AlUCSS6y7G— Oklahoma Women's Gym (@OU_WGymnastics) April 17, 2021
- Also this weekend, the OU men’s gymnastics narrowly missed out on their own chance to win another national title as Mark Williams’ team finished behind the championship winning Stanford Cardinal.
Around the Sports World
- On Sunday, Miami Heat forward Bam Adebayo sunk the Brooklyn Nets with this game-winning buzzer beater to walk off the court with a 109-107 upset victory.
LADIES AND GENTLEMAN... BAM ADEBAYO! pic.twitter.com/PN3YYCSB6B— Miami HEAT (@MiamiHEAT) April 18, 2021
- Speaking of the Nets, Brooklyn’s Kevin Durant left Sunday’s game at Miami with a left thigh contusion. It’s the same leg that KD suffered a strained hamstring in earlier this season that sidelined the 11-time NBA All-Star for 24 contests.
- QB Alex Smith has announced his retirement from the NFL after 14 seasons in the league. The former No. 1 overall pick in the 2005 NFL Draft played the bulk of his career with the San Francisco 49ers before stints with the Kansas City Chiefs and later the Washington Football Team. He was named the NFL’s Comeback Player of the Year in 2020 after overcoming a severe leg injury originally sustained in 2018.
One of the greatest comebacks in NFL history.— NFL (@NFL) April 19, 2021
Thanks for being an inspiration, Alex Smith. (via @lizbsmith11/IG) pic.twitter.com/HOqggvmJf7
- In other retirement news, veteran right fielder Jay Bruce announced his sudden retirement from the MLB over the weekend after more than 13 years as a pro slugger. He played most of his career with the Cincinnati Reds, and last suited up for the New York Yankees this season.
- On Monday, the Cincinnati Bengals unveiled the team’s new line of uniforms. The updated look is a more modern take on the previous threads. Personally, I actually like them, even though orange isn’t necessarily my favorite color.
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