Enemies of the state: Metta World Peace joins list of Oklahoma sports villains

Oklahoma has had its share of sporting villains. Not just the guys who were the Bedlam rivalry. Billy Tubbs and the Boz were hated in Stillwater; Myron Roderick and Les Miles were despised in Norman.
Oklahoman Published: May 10, 2012
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5. Gordon Riese: The Pac-10 replay official missed a variety of calls on an Oregon onside kick, allowing the Ducks to rally to beat OU 34-33. Even Cowboy fans sympathized.

6. James Edward Sullivan: The secretary of the Amateur Athletic Union in 1913 stripped Jim Thorpe of his Olympic gold medals after learning that Thorpe played semi-pro baseball. The AAU went on to name its most prestigious award after Sullivan. Thorpe supporters took up the cause to have the medals reinstated, which they were in 1983.

7. Mark Cuban: When the NBA voted on the Seattle Supersonics' relocation to Oklahoma City, only two owners voted no – the Blazers' Paul Allen, who lived in Seattle – and the Mavericks' Mark Cuban. Worse yet, Cuban's Mavs beat the Thunder in the 2011 Western Conference Finals and went on to the NBA championship.

8. Les Miles: The Sooners recoiled at Miles' bravado – refusing to call OU by name – and success (2-2 in Bedlam). The Cowboys turned on Miles when he bolted for LSU after the 2004 Alamo Bowl, even though it was hard to blame him – Miles coached the Tigers to the 2007 national title.

9. Norm Stewart: Stormin' Norman coached Missouri basketball for 32 seasons and always was a willing and able antagonist for every coach from Henry Iba to Kelvin Sampson. His standoffs with Billy Tubbs were legendary.

10. The Boz: All opponents loathed the OU linebacker for his outrageous antics. But even Sooners turned on Brian Bosworth after his failed steroid test, “National Communists Against Athletes” T-shirt and book talking about teammates firing Uzis from outside the Bud House dorm.

by Berry Tramel
Columnist
Berry Tramel, a lifelong Oklahoman, sports fan and newspaper reader, joined The Oklahoman in 1991 and has served as beat writer, assistant sports editor, sports editor and columnist. Tramel grew up reading four daily newspapers — The Oklahoman,...
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