NORMAN — Mike Tarpley said he's over what happened to his Oklahoma football team at Oregon a week ago. His shirt said something else. On the front: FOWL PLAY? "He's obviously over it," Tarpley's friend Mark Oates chided as they tailgated along Lindsey Street before OU's game against Middle Tennessee State. "He's a true fan. That's why he's still pissed." Tarpley wasn't alone. Plenty of Sooner fans remain angry about the officiating snafus that helped the Ducks score two late touchdowns and win 34-33. A week may have passed, but time has yet to heal the wounds from this loss. "Totally angry," Billy Hendrix said. "Just kind of bummed," his wife, Lena, said. The couple sported T-shirts designed by one of Lena's co-workers and inspired by the events of last week. Across the top were the words, "Oregon Instant Replay Officials." Across the bottom, "We have conclusive evidence!" In the middle, a black-and-white picture of the Three Stooges watching a television monitor. "Everybody we've walked by who've actually taken time to read it have said, ‘Where'd you get that?'" Billy Hendrix said. While fans swarmed around campus, laughing and talking, drinking and tailgating, there was a noticeable difference in the game-day atmosphere. The electricity in the air before most games was replaced on a bright, sunny day by a fog. An Oregon fog, perhaps. "Seems kind of down to me," Billy Hendrix said. "I think they're still angry. I think once we whip up on Middle Tennessee here, it'll be good." Marilyn Conley looked at Saturday's game as a fresh start. "As of this morning at 8 a.m., it's all past," she said as she sat on a bench north of the stadium, her children playing on an inflatable at Fan Fest and her husband standing in line for Billy Sims' autograph. "This is a new game, a new week. Hopefully we'll use that momentum for that loss." Diane Skinner hopes it doesn't cost the Sooners anything else. "If we win the rest of them," she said of OU's remaining games, "it's going to end up messing them up." She held one of the posters being distributed at Fan Fest in her hands as she walked along Lindsey. It had the popular "We got ducked" slogan on it. She still has a tough time believing how quickly things changed a week ago. "By the time it got to (the onside kick), we thought we'd won the game," Skinner said. "We were all partying, carrying on, not paying a whole lot of attention." Now, the sequence has become one of the most infamous clips in OU history. "I don't watch it," Tarpley said, standing near the television in his group's decked out tent along Lindsey. "I turn it off. It gives me heartburn."
NewsOK.com has disabled the comments for this article.
Sooner fans Billy and Lena Hendrix made their own tee shirts about Oklahoma’s loss to Oregon. The Hendrixs wore the shirts before the Sooners’ game against Middle Tennessee State on Saturday. STEVE SISNEY, THE OKLAHOMAN