NORMAN — A handful of Oklahoma players ran to the west end of the field, seeking to intimidate Oklahoma State just before Bedlam 2011's kickoff.
Game officials and Sooner coaches stopped the trash talk and taunting before OSU emerged from its tunnel, preventing what could've been an ugly, uncontrollable pre-game mess.
Little could've stopped what happened next, though, from becoming ugly and uncontrollable for Oklahoma; the Sooners were routed 44-10 in the de facto Big 12 championship game, OU's first Bedlam loss in nine years.
As the Sooners prepare for Saturday, when they'll host Oklahoma State on Owen Field, OU players and coaches share their memories of that miserable night in Stillwater and what it meant.
LEADING UP TO THE GAME
Defensive tackle Casey Walker, one of the Sooners who walked to OSU's tunnel pregame: “The team was hyped. It was just one of those moments where we don't have a Big 12 championship no more, so this is really it. To win on their field, and take pictures as Big 12 champs on their field, is something kinda special. Just emotions was going, intensity was very high. Testosterone was out the roof. It was just one of those things where you get caught up in the moment.”
Wide receiver Kenny Stills: “You never see yourself getting embarrassed on national television. But they were a great team but it wasn't something that I felt like was a fluke or anything like that.”
DURING THE GAME
Quarterback Landry Jones: “They flat out beat us in every aspect. Usually we feel like we have some success in some part of the game. But last year, they just flat out beat us. It was tough, being blown out like that on the road.”
Stills: “It's a pretty embarrassing performance we put out there as an offense and as a team. That's the way I look at it.”
Walker: “That was a massacre. That wasn't even a loss.”
AFTER THE GAME
Jones: “It's not fun. It's something you don't ever want to be part of. But it happened, so you just shake the other team's hands and run off the field. I was out of there pretty quick. I'm usually off the field pretty fast. No fans really yelled at me or anything like that. It was more excitement for their team.”
Defensive lineman David King: “I saw (the goal posts being torn down), but I was just walking off. It took me, I don't know, five minutes to shuffle through the crowd. Walking with your head down. Two fans came up to me and said some of the most disrespectful things I've ever heard. ... I wanted to crack them with my helmet. But I just walked around them. Because at the end of the day, they won the game.”
Walker: “Just being blunt about it, they beat us bad. If I was on the team that beat some team like that, I would try to have all the fans rush the field.”
WHAT IT MEANT
King: “We had to wait three, four weeks to play in the bowl game. We had to watch them celebrate winning the Big 12 off of us. Watch them get to go to the Fiesta Bowl. ... I actually saw their bus because I stayed in Phoenix for New Year's Eve. ... We were just driving through Scottsdale. I was like, ‘Hey, that's the hotel we stayed ... Oh.'
“They've had a year's worth of bragging rights. Saturday, we want to go out there and walk off the field with a win and give these guys around here 364 more days to just have that to gloat about.”
Coach Bob Stoops, on if the perception of OSU changed: “You'd have to ask them. I'd always had great respect for them before last year. I don't know. ... All I know is I have to play it and it's been a rival game. It didn't start last year. It's been that way for a good number of years.”
Stills: “I don't think we ever looked down on them. I feel like people want to say we're the big brother, but they're a great team and they've been doing great things since I've been here.
“I mean, if (other people) didn't respect them, then I'm sure they do now.”