Dan Krutka is an admittedly spoiled Sooners fan.
Spoiled by national championships and No. 1 preseason rankings. Spoiled by Bob Stoops and Heisman Trophy quarterbacks. So spoiled that when USA Today released the 2012 preseason Coaches Poll and Oklahoma sat at No. 4, Krutka had the response many OU fans had on Twitter: What's there to be excited about at No. 4?
That's also a No. 4 team that received only one first-place vote a year after the Sooners were slotted at preseason No. 1 with 42 of the 59 first-place votes.
“Doesn't matter,” Krutka said of only nabbing one vote. “I do wonder who voted for us. … At this point now, we're back to being super spoiled fans in the sense that our expectations are so high that we don't appreciate anything. We're really big on nitpicking.
“Everyone looks at it with kind of an eye to ‘That's great. We're ranked No. 4. That means nothing.' … Coming in last year with a No. 1 ranking, the only thing that can exceed that expectation is a national championship.”
Krutka is only one fan with one voice, but he doesn't want to get too excited before he sees some changes from this Sooner football team.
He is a dedicated OU fan who grew up in Tulsa who'd like to see the defense not give up six or seven big plays this year. He sat through the lows of the '90s. He's an alum. He's been to every home game from 2000 until he missed one last year because of his fiancee. He's been to all four national championship games since Stoops arrived. He knows in 2000, when that team was ranked preseason No. 19, that it was luck that the team received no major injuries, and he's worried about those two injury announcements, one of a starter and one of a potential local making it big.
The No. 4 ranking doesn't matter just based on history or that it wasn't the ranking the Sooners got last year, it doesn't matter to him because it's not the preseason ranking that means anything, it's what the Sooners are going to prove to fans on the field.
Last year, Sooners fans had a lot to be excited about sitting atop college football in the preseason. Then OU finished No. 15 after a 10-win season with losses to Baylor, Texas Tech and Oklahoma State.