The Sooners have played national championship games in Miami (against the likes of Florida, Miami U. and Florida State) and New Orleans (against LSU).
If the Cowboys had squirmed past Alabama into the Big Bowl last season, their reward would have been a New Orleans title match against, yep, LSU.
So amid the fanfare of the historic announcement Tuesday that college football will expand its playoff system to four teams, don't forget this glorious bonus.
Arlington, Texas, is in line to join the rotation. The road to a national title soon will go through Greater Dallas, either with the title game or a semifinal or both.
And that's not just a good thing. “Great thing,” said OU athletic director Joe Castiglione.
Starting with the 2014 season, the national title game will be offered to the highest bidder, and the two national semifinals will rotate between six bowls.
Jerry Jones' ears have more than perked up. According to The Dallas Morning News, Jones already has formed a nonprofit partnership with the Cotton Bowl and his Cowboys Stadium to go after college football's plum games.
All kinds of cities have expressed interest in chasing the Big Bowl, now that college football's title game will be outside the structure of the sport's traditional bowl games. Indianapolis, Jacksonville, Detroit, Tampa, St. Louis. Plus you know New Orleans, Atlanta, Miami, Houston, Phoenix and Los Angeles will chase, too.
But who has a better hand than Jones? The world's greatest stadium. Organizing bodies like the Cotton Bowl and the Cowboys franchise that know how to put on postseason games. And a willingness to spend money to make money, as Jones has proved with big payouts for regular-season games like OU-Brigham Young, Texas A&M-Arkansas and Michigan-Alabama.
Perhaps only Atlanta can match Arlington as a college football locale with so much going for it, and Arlington wins that matchup by a landslide on the stadium.
Plus, Jones will have a thirst to get the new Big Bowl on a regular basis, to make up for the Super Bowl fiasco of 17 months ago, when a storm-of-the-century iced down Dallas and the game was marred by a temporary-bleacher debacle.
There seems no chance Arlington won't be part of the new playoff order. Which means Big 12 country finally will have a stake in the ground, after trying decades of contesting national championships in Florida and Louisiana and California and Arizona.
And that's superb news for OU and OSU, which are easy access from Dallas for recruiting or ballgames.
“It's a great day for college football,” Cotton Bowl president Rick Baker said in a statement Tuesday night. “We congratulate the conference commissioners and presidents for their diligent work to enhance the postseason.
“We look forward to learning more about the opportunities that will be created by today's announcement. With partners like AT&T (the Cotton Bowl's primary sponsor) and Cowboys Stadium, we believe we have a great story to tell.”
The Cotton Bowl, for 60 years one of college football's grandest games, fell to second-tier status in 1996, with the demise of the Southwest Conference.
But the Cotton Bowl has retained its excellent organization and reputation for supreme hospitality, and with the addition of two premium bowl slots to join the Rose, Fiesta, Orange and Sugar, the Cotton Bowl should be in line to return to the main table.
Heck, the Cotton Bowl even could be in line to land all or part of the new agreement between the Big 12 and the Southeastern Conference, to match their champions in a bowl game starting with the 2014 season.
The new four-team playoff means the Big 12/SEC bowl rarely, if ever, will truly match the champs from each.
But outgoing Big 12 commissioner Chuck Neinas said the Big 12/SEC answer to the Rose Bowl could sign on to an existing bowl, or even be rotated among bowls.
It wouldn't be crazy to think that the Cotton and the Sugar would rotate as the site for the so-called Champions Bowl.
The addition of two bowls to elite status, what now are known as BCS bowls, was made to give more access, so that deserving teams (Boise State in 2011, California in 2004, Kansas State in 1998 were notable examples) would not be left out.
So Arlington, in the form of a Jones/Cotton Bowl partnership, will be hot on the trail of a semifinal and/or the title game.
“My guess is they'll go for both,” Castiglione said. “One of the semifinal games for sure, and also make a play to try to host the championship game. That's not inside information, that's just the forward thinking they have.”
And that would be a very good thing for the Big 12 and the two Oklahoma schools that in many ways consider Greater Dallas an extension of their state.
Berry Tramel: Berry can be reached at (405) 760-8080 or at firstname.lastname@example.org. He can be heard Monday through Friday from 4:40-5:20 p.m. on The Sports Animal radio network, including FM-98.1. You can also view his personality page at newsok.com/berrytramel.