Renaldo Works was a solid OU tailback from 2000-03. He rushed for 1,554 yards and 21 touchdowns in his career, and caught 46 passes for 413 yards. Works also returned to the university after one season in the NFL, obtaining a bachelor's degree in business/finance and a master's degree in entrepreneurship.
But Works is most remembered for one afternoon in Norman. On Sept. 7, 2002, Works was the hero of OU's 37-27 victory over Alabama. Works hadn't touched the ball when the Sooners took the field, trailing 27-23 with 3:33 left in the game. But Works turned two shovel passes into 23- and 39-yard gains, with a variety of Pac-Man moves, including a hurdle of a Bama defender. Works set up the go-ahead touchdown.
Now Works is a senior land man for Conoco-Phillips, and the Sooners are in the Sugar Bowl against Alabama.
How did it happen? Just being ready when they called my name. I wanted to have an opportunity, being nervous, getting my number called, getting a chance to make a play.
I think the defense was probably a little bit tired. Coach (Bob) Stoops was able to pull me in, somebody with fresh legs. They probably thought I was coming in to block. Threw them off a little bit. We hadn't run the shovel play a lot in the past. Only in practice. That probably threw them off. To run it with me was probably a change-up. That caught the defense off. I would like to call it Sooner Magic.
I remember running, but I don't remember the play. It was a play like another to me. Win. That's what I saw. I saw a W. I wanted to score. I wanted us to win. I hate to lose.
I didn't realize how big a deal it was until probably years later. Just to be able to have people wherever I go mention it to me, whenever I was out in the working world or corporate America. At Conoco-Phillips, they would mention the Alabama game. When you're 20 years old, you don't realize how it would impact your life. When I'm negotiating a deal, or just out and about, you have people that will mention that play to me.
OU-Alabama, just super exciting is what I would call it. The battle of the crimsons. Historic programs. Alabama in their own right, a lot of people say they're one of the greatest college teams in history. We have our way of saying we are, too.