Former Oklahoma fullback Brody Eldridge, playing for the winless Indianapolis Colts, who were on a bye week, publicly tweeted his frustration following Oklahoma's 45-38 loss to Baylor.
“that's what happens when you change everything; let ESPN come in, turn humble program into arrogant one.”
“Brody is one of the best players to come through here,” said OU center Ben Habern, a team captain. “He loves Oklahoma football. He's a die-hard Sooner. I don't think he meant anything bad about it.”
Eldridge later tweeted he overreacted. His original knee-jerk reaction referred to ESPN's “training camp” series, a behind-the-scenes look at the first three days of OU's fall camp.
“I don't think we got cocky,” said defensive end Frank Alexander. “Everyone is free to say whatever they want to say. I know Brody personally. I know he didn't mean for it to be harmful to us.”
Habern said Eldridge always focused on the task at hand, preparing for an upcoming season during two-a-days, not cameras or media attention.
“They weren't even here that long,” Habern said. “The first few practices of two-a-days are no pads, just getting into the swing of things, getting into the flow. I don't feel it got us off our game. That's me speaking for the offensive line, not the whole team.”
Safety Aaron Colvin said the brief ESPN series had no lasting effects.
“Our guys handled it well,” Colvin said. “We didn't really think too much of it... Before the season even started we said: ‘Let's play with a swagger. Let's play with an edge all the time.' That's all we were trying to do. It so happened ESPN's cameras were there.”
The Sooners started the season 6-0, highlighted by wins over Florida State, Missouri and Texas, before the shocking home loss to Texas Tech.
For the record, Eldridge later tweeted: “Don't get me wrong I love my SOONERS!” and “My tweets were wrong.”
On Sunday, Eldridge tweeted: “I love my SOONERS more than any one!! Lets beat iowA state and our Lil bro osu. We will dominate in whatever bowl you want.”
Habern said there were benefits to ESPN's cameras being on campus a few days. He loved the bowling alley scene that featured the O-line.
“That was fun,” Habern said. “It's fun to do that stuff. Honestly, the whole show kind of brought us together closer as a team.”