MIAMI BEACH, Fla. — As usual on bowl trips to this south Florida paradise, the University of Oklahoma Sooners are staying at the Fontainebleau Hotel. South Beach and its many temptations are just a mile or so down Collins Avenue.
But the Sooners say they haven’t succumbed. They’ve got work to do.
OU plays Florida on Thursday night for the college football national championship.
"Nobody has even mentioned partying,” defensive tackle Gerald McCoy said. "Everybody talks about having fun after the game. It’s all business.”
Well, it’s not all business. The Sooners are spending time on the beach, in the malls and in their hotel banquet room, where pool tables, foosball and arcade games are set up.
But the Orange Bowl Committee has cut back on required team functions, at the request of the coaches.
And OU safety Nic Harris said the Sooners understand why they’re in Miami, "Not to party, but to play a great game.”
And the Gators say they are no different.
"This game is so big, we’re all in bed by 9,” Florida offensive tackle Phil Trautwein said.
The Sooners say their bowl attitude is different from years past. OU has lost two straight Fiesta Bowls and its two BCS bowls before that. Of course, they never acknowledged a lack of focus before any of those defeats.
"Different team, different year, different outcome,” Harris said.
He has a motto. WTLG. Win The Last Game.
"That’s why we’re going to go out and play, excuse my French, a hell of a game.”