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Oklahoma football: Former Sooner Tyrone Rodgers knows how Justin Brown feels

Tryone Rodgers transferred to Washington after turmoil hit the Sooners in the late ‘80s, much like new receiver Justin Brown left Penn State for OU.
By Stephanie Kuzydym Modified: August 19, 2012 at 10:39 pm •  Published: August 20, 2012

Rodgers knows how he feels. Oklahoma was his first choice. He loved the guys that were there, but when then-coach Barry Switzer decided to leave and Rodgers' roommate, linebacker Steve Lee, left the football team, Rodgers couldn't envision staying.

“Knowing things were going to change — Switzer was the atom bomb that created all the momentum to be what (Oklahoma football) was,” he said. “That was a hard choice for me.”

As the Los Angeles Times put in 1990, Rodgers traded oranges for roses when he transferred to Washington. He won a national title there in 1991, but he still calls his teammates at OU his family.

“That's the biggest fraternity of brotherhood next to the armed services that you could think of,” Rodgers said. “We don't talk on the phone a lot … but that camaraderie, you can never take away.”

Nobody can truly take the Nittany Lion out of the new Sooner Justin Brown. He'll always have three years at Penn State in his memories.

To this day, Rodgers sees himself as a Sooner and a Husky, and if they played in a game, he'd be split. That's just what happens when a football player grows his family from one to two.

“The guys that he left, they're still part of his family,” Rodgers said. “And the people on the outside … It's just a grain of salt. It's like dropping the game-winning touchdown ball. He just has to get back up and keep doing what he's doing.”