NORMAN — Few things are easily predictable in college football, but Oklahoma’s Bob Stoops era has included a couple recurring phenomenons to this point.
Leap-year seasons under Stoops have ended with OU playing for the national championship in South Florida, and every other season — the even-numbered years — Oklahoma has been crowned Big 12 champion.
The former is impossible this season, and although OU doesn’t control its own destiny, the latter remains feasible.
I wrote for Tuesday’s newspaper about what would have to happen for OU to win the Big 12 championship; in short, the Sooners must win out and hope for Texas to beat Kansas State in two weeks.
Here’s a look at Oklahoma’s even-numbered years under Stoops. In every prior even-numbered season, Bedlam has been in Stillwater. But after conference realignment, OSU ended up hosting the rivalry game two consecutive years, which means this year’s game will be in Norman.
Record: 13-0 (8-0 Big 12)
Bedlam result: Won 12-7; Derrick Strait broke up a fourth-down pass in the end zone on the Cowboys’ last possession.
Conference title?: Yes, beat Kansas State 27-24 in Big 12 championship game.
Bowl game/result: Orange Bowl; beat Florida State, 13-2, in national-title game.
Record: 12-2 (6-2 Big 12)
Bedlam result: Lost 38-28; The Cowboys — especially quarterback Josh Fields and receiver Rashaun Woods — were dominant, taking a 35-6 lead before the Sooners’ late rally fell short.
Conference title?: Yes, beat Colorado 29-7 in Big 12 championship game.
Bowl game/result: Rose Bowl; beat Washington State 34-14.
Record: 12-1 (8-0 Big 12)
Bedlam result: Won 38-35; Adrian Peterson rushed for 249 yards and an 80-yard touchdown, and OSU kicker Jason Ricks missed a 49-yard attempt that would’ve tied the game with 11 seconds left.
Conference title?: Yes, beat Colorado 42-3 in Big 12 championship game.
Bowl game/result: Orange Bowl; lost to USC, 55-19, in national-title game.
Record: 11-3 (7-1 Big 12)
Bedlam result: Won 27-21; Running backs Allen Patrick and Chris Brown combined for 237 yards and three touchdowns on the ground. OSU drove to the Sooners’ 25-yard line on its final drive but couldn’t get in the end zone.
Conference title?: Yes, beat Nebraska 21-7 in Big 12 championship game.
Bowl game/result: Fiesta Bowl; lost to Boise State, 43-42 (OT), in one of the most exciting college football games in recent memory.
Record: 12-2 (7-2 Big 12)
Bedlam result: Won 61-41; Sam Bradford threw for 370 yards and four touchdowns, and tight end Jermaine Gresham caught 9 passes for 158 yards and two scores.
Conference title?: Yes, beat Missouri 62-21 in Big 12 championship game. The Sooners’ appearance in the Big 12 title game was controversial because of the three-way tie in the South division standings between OU, Texas and Texas Tech. The Sooners lost to Texas, but beat the Red Raiders, who beat the Longhorns.
Bowl game/result: National championship game; lost 24-14 to Florida.
Record: 12-2 (6-2 Big 12)
Bedlam result: Won 47-41; Landry Jones threw for 468 yards and four touchdowns, but also was picked off three times. The Cowboys never led in the game, but were also never out of it. James Hanna’s 76-yard TD pass from Jones in the final minutes gave OU a more comfortable, two-possession lead after the Cowboys had cut their deficit to two points.
Conference title?: Yes, beat Nebraska 23-20 in the final Big 12 championship game before the conference went to a 10-team, round-robin format. Like in 2008, OU emerged from a three-way tie atop the Big 12 South standings, this time with Oklahoma State and Texas A&M.
Bowl game/result: Fiesta Bowl; beat Connecticut 48-20 to snap the Sooners’ 5-game losing streak in BCS bowl appearances.