Berry Tramel
Sports 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, the Oklahoma City Times, the Norman Transcript and the Oklahoma Journal — and entered the newspaper business at the age of 17, with the Transcript in 1978. His first game assignment was the Lexington-Elmore City high school football game, and he has enjoyed the journey ever since, from high school wrestling duals and regional track meets to Orange Bowls and the NBA playoffs.

Tramel was born and raised in Norman, Okla. He and his wife, Tricia, were married in 1980 and live in Norman near their daughter, son-in-law and three granddaughters.

  • What did Enes Kanter say and what did he mean?

    Berry Tramel | Updated: Wed, Jul 1, 2015

    By all accounts, Enes Kanter is talking with the Thunder today about a new contract. I wrote about Kanter for the Wednesday Oklahoman, and the factors that make it even more likely that he will remain in OKC. You can read that column here. The 23-year-old center has been in Turkey most of the offseason — he’s been seen strolling around d in Thunder gear, which I assume is a good sign — so we haven’t heard about his latest thoughts. But we do have his exit interview from April. Let’s revisit that interview and see if we can find some clues about what he wants: On his contract situation: “Obviously I love it here. Obviously it’s not in my head. We just have to see

  • Who was the final draft pick of the Seattle SuperSonics?

    Berry Tramel | Updated: Wed, Jul 1, 2015

      Trivia question: Who was the final draft pick of the Seattle SuperSonics? And no, it’s not Russell Westbrook. Westbrook was Seattle’s first-round pick, a week or so before the Sonics moved to Oklahoma City. But Westbrook wasn’t even the Sonics’ final first-round pick. That honor went to Serge Ibaka, drafted 24th overall. The Sonics’ final pick was Sasha Kaun, the Kansas center who averaged 7.1 points and 3.9 rebounds a game on the Jayhawks’ NCAA championship team. Kaun was a four-year Jayhawk, playing with a bevy of future NBA players — Mario Chalmers, Brandon Rush, Darrell Arthur, Cole Aldrich and Julian Wright. On draft night, Sam Presti traded Kaun to

  • NBA free agency: Ranking the available big men

    By BERRY TRAMEL | Updated: Tue, Jun 30, 2015

    FREE-AGENT BIG MEN: Enes Kanter will be one of several good big men available when the NBA's free-agency period begins on Wednesday.

  • Commentary: OKC Thunder should be able to keep Enes Kanter, but at a hefty price

    By BERRY TRAMEL | Published: Tue, Jun 30, 2015

    BERRY TRAMEL -- The NBA’s free agency season opens Wednesday, and the new market realities are going to hit swift and strong. Kanter is a restricted free agent, which means he can sign with any team but the Thunder can keep their center by matching the offer. Which the Thunder almost surely will. Right after taking a deep breath and swallowing hard.

  • Time for Thunder to use retired Sonic numbers

    Berry Tramel | Updated: Mon, Jun 29, 2015

    Thunder rookie Cameron Payne wanted jersey No. 1. That’s what he wore at Murray State. But Payne can’t wear No. 1 with the Thunder. It’s retired, in honor of Gus Williams, who if he ever was in Oklahoma, it was to ride or horse or shop for boots, not to play basketball. Here we go again. The sticky details of relocation lead to absurdity. The Seattle SuperSonics moved to Oklahoma City in 2008, and with the move came all the Sonics’ history and honors, with some stipulations that it would return to Seattle should that city regain an NBA franchise. So when Kendrick Perkins arrived via trade from Boston in 2011, he couldn’t wear No. 43 with the Thunder. That was retired in honor of

  • Cam Payne: What kind of basketball place is Murray State?

    Berry Tramel | Updated: Mon, Jun 29, 2015

    The newest Thunder is Cam Payne, whose slogan when he was drafted 14th overall Thursday night was chip-on-my-shoulder. Payne didn’t mind telling everyone he felt he belonged at Duke but instead became a mid-major star at Murray State of the Ohio Valley Conference. Here’s a tutorial on Murray State basketball: * Murray State is located in Murray, Ky., in far western Kentucky. It’s not in the middle of nowhere. Murray State is within three hours of Louisville, Memphis, Nashville and St. Louis. Murray State has 11,166 students. * The Racers have made 15 NCAA Tournaments and have won three times, beating Colorado State in 2012, Vanderbilt in 2010 and North Carolina State in 1988.

  • Tramel: I think we're going to like new OKC Thunder coach Billy Donovan just fine

    BY BERRY TRAMEL | Updated: Mon, Jun 29, 2015

    BILLY DONOVAN -- New Oklahoma City Thunder coach Billy Donovan is personable and engaging. Seems to have constructed few walls. That’s encouraging. Columnist Berry Tramel says he thinks we’re going to like Donovan. We the press and we the people.

  • Tramel: 'Don't know' is acceptable in the NBA Draft

    By BERRY TRAMEL | Updated: Thu, Jun 25, 2015

    If it’s not Kevin Wayne Durant about to grace the roster, we really have no clue how a player will fare in the NBA.

  • Will Edmond Santa Fe's Josh Richardson be drafted?

    Berry Tramel | Updated: Wed, Jun 24, 2015

    Edmond Santa Fe’s Josh Richardson reportedly was back in his hometown this week for a workout with the Thunder. The 6-foot-6 Tennessee swingman is considered a possible second-round pick in the NBA Draft on Thursday night. But draft analysts say Richardson has a decent chance at sticking with an NBA team. “Richardson is a player that will stick in the league early purely based off his physical and athletic traits,” declared in its analysis of Richardson, which you can read in its entirety

  • Thunder: Is Cameron Payne a left-handed George Hill?

    Berry Tramel | Updated: Tue, Jun 23, 2015

    Of six prominent NBA mock drafts, four have the Thunder taking Murray State point guard Cameron Payne at No. 14. The other two have Payne going to the Pacers at No. 11. For weeks, Payne has been prominently mentioned as a Thunder target. He’s a 6-foot-2 sophomore who can really shoot. Payne averaged 20.3 points […]

  • NBA payroll lists: Thunder won't be in free agent market

    Berry Tramel | Updated: Mon, Jun 22, 2015

    NBA Draft Week arrives, which is exciting. Because it means free agency arrives soon. The draft is nothing too exciting,  even if you’ve got a team with a lottery pick. That’s one roster spot, and sometimes you don’t know much about whoever gets taken. For instance, who could be drafted at No. 14 by the […]

  • How these Warriors are like 2012 Thunder

    Berry Tramel | Published: Thu, Jun 11, 2015

    The 2015 NBA Finals continue Tuesday night. We’ve seen this script before. This Warrior-Cavalier series is morphing into the 2012 NBA Finals. Three seasons ago, the Heat beat the Thunder four games to one, and so far, the script has been similar. Home team victory in Game 1. Road team victory in Game 2, after […]

  • Why the Warriors will win the NBA Finals

    Berry Tramel | Published: Thu, Jun 4, 2015

    LeBron James has been to five NBA Finals. Thursday night, that number becomes six. LeBron is 2-3 in the Finals, and frankly, that’s about where he ought to be. His Cavaliers were nowhere near in the Spurs’ class in 2007, and ditto for 2014. You might argue that LeBron’s Heat should have beaten the Mavericks […]

  • Cavs need a monumental upset to beat the Warriors

    Berry Tramel | Published: Thu, Jun 4, 2015

    The Warriors and the Cavaliers begin the NBA Finals on Thursday night, and LeBron James is so good, he makes you think Cleveland has a fighting chance. But LeBron will have to buck history to raise his third O’Brien Trophy. The Warriors are not just the best of the West. They are historically good. Golden […]

  • Why the (underrated) Warriors will win the NBA Finals

    FROM STAFF REPORTS | Updated: Wed, Jun 3, 2015

    WE PICK'EM -- Jenni Carlson and Berry Tramel make their picks for everything from the NBA Finals to the next Iowa State coach. And even figure out who's the best coach in college football.

  • The 10 best father-son duos in NBA history

    Berry Tramel | Published: Wed, Jun 3, 2015

    Two of the best father-son combinations in NBA history are represented in the NBA Finals. Both with the Warriors. The fathers of Steph Curry and Klay Thompson were uncommonly good — if under the radar — NBA players. Dell Curry is one of the best players in Charlotte Hornets history. Mychal Thompson was the first […]

  • LeBron vs. Curry: How to determine the real MVP

    Berry Tramel | Published: Mon, Jun 1, 2015

    The NBA Finals begin this week, and it’s a clear matchup of Team vs. Superstar. Golden State Warriors vs. LeBron James. So why does the Team have the NBA’s most valuable player? Steph Curry won the award in 2015, in a tight vote over James Harden second, with LeBron a distant third. The whole MVP […]

  • History says Billy Donovan can lead the Thunder to the NBA Finals in his first season

    Berry Tramel | Updated: Sun, May 31, 2015

    It’s guaranteed that for the 10th time in the last 60 years, an NBA championship will be won by a coach in his first year with the team.

  • The Thunder let down Scott Brooks easy — the Bulls danced on Tom Thibodeau's grave

    By Berry Tramel | Updated: Fri, May 29, 2015

    The NBA is a rough league. Two of the top-10 coaches of all time in winning percentage get fired in the same spring, and both might have won NBA titles if not for injury-plagued rosters or LeBron James or even the bounce of the ball.

  • Tramel: Why Gregg Popovich is a basketball coach, not a pilot

    Berry Tramel | Updated: Thu, May 28, 2015

    I received an email this week from Wayne Baughman, the wrestling icon who was inducted into the Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame in 2013. Baughman went to John Marshall High School, then was an NCAA individual champion at OU and a member of two NCAA title teams for the Sooners. Baughman is the only wrestler […]

Berry Tramel Today at 1:14 PM How Terry Bowden lost his big chance at Owen Field
Berry Tramel Today at 10:42 AM Chicago travelblog: Following the trail of Eliot Ness
Berry Tramel Sun, Aug. 30 2015 12:06:27 PM CST OSU offensive linemen rally around new coach
Berry Tramel Fri, Aug. 28 2015 09:16:13 PM CST OU's Orlando Brown recovering from the loss of his father
Berry Tramel Fri, Aug. 28 2015 01:19:46 PM CST A special night celebrating Oklahoma basketball
Berry Tramel Fri, Aug. 28 2015 10:50:47 AM CST Tramel: Fine college football players? When will we start fining coaches?
Berry Tramel Fri, Aug. 28 2015 08:16:43 AM CST Orlando Brown talks about his father
Berry Tramel Thu, Aug. 27 2015 10:21:21 PM CST Fine college football players? When will we start fining coaches?
Berry Tramel Thu, Aug. 27 2015 06:34:08 PM CST OSU football notebook: Kevin Peterson declares himself ready for opener
Berry Tramel Thu, Aug. 27 2015 02:47:59 PM CST Mike Gundy raves about Emmanuel Ogbah
Berry Tramel Thu, Aug. 27 2015 07:12:33 AM CST Thunder's Nick Collison ranks fifth on NBA list
Berry Tramel Wed, Aug. 26 2015 03:18:28 PM CST Tramel: Frank Shannon holds Bob Stoops' career in his hands
Berry Tramel Wed, Aug. 26 2015 02:15:15 PM CST Frank Shannon holds Bob Stoops' career in his hands
Berry Tramel Wed, Aug. 26 2015 09:29:02 AM CST Central Michigan's program has dipped in recent years
Berry Tramel Tue, Aug. 25 2015 11:32:52 PM CST Use of OU tailbacks most interesting decision for Lincoln Riley
Berry Tramel Tue, Aug. 25 2015 08:51:11 PM CST Will the Sooners run enough in Lincoln Riley's Air Raid?
Berry Tramel Tue, Aug. 25 2015 01:16:42 PM CST Trevor Knight & J.W. Walsh give Bedlam rivals great QB depth
Berry Tramel Tue, Aug. 25 2015 09:31:04 AM CST Cris Carter's advice a symptom of NFL arrogance and Roger Goodell incompetence
Berry Tramel Mon, Aug. 24 2015 05:05:51 PM CST Time for OSU to stop opening the season on the road
Berry Tramel Mon, Aug. 24 2015 03:08:32 PM CST Tramel: Why does Baker Mayfield keep surpassing expectations?