“I think the walk deal was pretty cool,” said OU quarterback Trevor Knight. “For the first time, we were kind of hesitant whether a bunch of people were going to show up. Maybe start a little routine there.”
But the fans were plentiful.
Just one thing. This was not the first time. This was not the first walk in OU football history.
In 1995, Howard Schnellenberger instituted a march of the Sooners from the Sooner House hotel, just north of the OU Law School, to the stadium. The fans, who were fired up for that 1995 season perhaps like no other time in school history, turned out en masse and made the walk quite a spectacle.
Of course, Schnellenberger’s season went splat. Bad football. Bad form by the coach. The fans soured. By December, Schnellenberger was ousted and that new tradition went the way of the wind.
Such campus walks are common in a lot of places. Iowa long has done one. So has Mississippi State and several other SEC locales. OSU started a walk from the Atherton Hotel to the stadium in the Les Miles days, and that tradition has continued, with great success.
The OU walk under Schnellenberger would have had to be changed, anyway, since the Sooner House was not conducive to hosting a football team. The hotel has since been renovated, but it still doesn’t work for hosting the Sooner football team. The Stoops method, unveiled Saturday, works better.
PARKER SETTLING IN
Freshman safety Steven Parker won’t grade his performance in the season opener but said he has plenty of room to grow.
“I felt like I tackled really well,” Parker said. “Thanks to my team I got to fit in the right gaps and all that kind of stuff. What I feel like I can improve on is my coverage skills and even more tackling.”
Parker was thrilled to see game action in his first time in a Sooners uniform.
“After the first game, I was like, ‘Wow, I can’t believe my life has actually taken this route where I’m wearing a Sooners uniform.’ I grew up watching it. I finally get to picture myself in that uniform.”
Parker, a former Jenks standout, gets to go back home this week when the Sooners play at Tulsa.