Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops mentioned Saturday, after the Iowa State win, that he didn't understand why the Big 12 would possibly recognize multiple champions this season.
By his Tuesday news conference in advance of Bedlam, he had become even more entrenched on the topic.
“Yeah, I don't get that,” Stoops said.
But that's precisely what the Big 12 has said it will do if OU defeats Oklahoma State this week. It could be a three-way tie at 7-2, actually, if Kansas State defeats Iowa State.
Of course, there's the little matter of head-to-head matchups. Oklahoma would have victories against both – and both wins would have come on the road. The Sooners would be the one headed to the Bowl Championship Series with a win Saturday.
Of particular irritation to the Stoops is the fact that the Big 12 had a glowing marketing campaign this summer centered on the idea of “one, true champion.” Now it's talking about two – or more.
“They can do what they want,” Stoops said of the league. “Did you ask them what happened to their whole promotion of the ‘one true champion'? You should have. That's all I heard for two days on the whole Big 12 coaches media circuit down there.
“I kind of took offense to it because we won seven of them. I thought they were all true ones. I thought they were changing it that this was going to be the one true one and I guess they reneged on that. That doesn't make much sense to me. I'll let them explain it.”
Oklahoma State's Mike Gundy said Monday that, hypothetically, he would prefer the “one, true champion” logic hold if OU won.
“I figured Mike would,” Stoops said. “If you're playing each other, it's pretty simple. If you weren't, then I get that. Some of the Big Ten ones, they didn't have a championship game and two teams didn't play each other. That makes sense.”
Of note, OU lists that Barry Switzer won 12 Big Eight titles. Of those, eight were outright.
WILLIAMS BANGED UP, BUT SHOULD PLAY VS. COWBOYS
Stoops said Monday he didn't know of any injury to freshman running back Brandon Williams, just after Williams limped from the practice field.
Fellow running back Roy Finch revealed Tuesday morning that Williams had slightly sprained or twisted an ankle late in the practice, while making a catch. Finch said he had spoken Tuesday with Williams and that the Texan plans to play this week.
Williams ran for a season-high 80 yards on 11 carries, which tied a season high, last week against Iowa State. He's averaging a healthy 5.4 yards a carry this season in 39 carries.
The Sooners could lean more heavily on their run game this week, given OSU's offense and weather conditions.
RONNELL LEWIS WANTS TO PLAY, BUT OUT FOR BEDLAM
Ronnell Lewis would like to play this week in Stillwater. But that doesn't mean Oklahoma's junior defensive end, just a week removed from a sprained MCL, will play.
“I don't see that. He says he wants to,” Stoops said. “He wants to, but that's not going to happen. As much as he wants to, I don't think he'd ever be cleared. It hurts more than he wants it to know. You know what I mean? Those things take a while. I don't see that happening.”
Lewis is behind only Frank Alexander for the team lead in sacks and tackles for a loss. Alexander is a good guy with which to keep pace. Lewis has 5 ½ sacks and 13 tackles for a loss.
“Ronnell, you can't replace him,” OU defensive coordinator Brent Venables said. “He was an exceptional player. You guys recognized him as one of the best defenders in the Big 12, if not the best. He was having that type of a year. He was pretty special, disruptive.”
STOOPS EXPECTS ROWDY T. BOONE PICKENS STADIUM
Like Texas week, Stoops was asked Tuesday about the hostility of opposing fans in a rivalry game. He had a similar answer about OSU supporters as Longhorns fans at the Cotton Bowl.
“I have headphones on and working and like I said, I marvel at the people who spend the energy that think I'm listening to ‘em,” Stoops said. “But it's what you want. It's not unlike any other in-state rivalry with the proximity and the fans and everybody and all of that is what everybody gets caught up in. We simplify it and it's execution and a game you've got to play and win.”