NORMAN – If Oklahoma is still afloat in the national or conference title races by mid-November, the Sooners are in for a heck of a stretch run.
The Big 12 schedule was released Tuesday morning, and OU is slated to finish its conference season with a Nov. 17 trip to West Virginia, a Thanksgiving week home game against Oklahoma State and then a Dec. 1 finale against TCU in Fort Worth.
OSU is the defending Big 12 champ, and newcomers West Virginia and TCU could receive strong consideration to be favorites this season.
OU opens its Big 12 schedule Sept. 22 against Kansas State. As it currently stands, it would be off the following week but then have no breaks for the remainder of the schedule, playing nine consecutive weeks.
Oklahoma is scheduled to play at Texas Tech on Oct. 6, against Texas in Dallas on Oct. 13, host Kansas on Oct. 20, host Notre Dame on Oct. 27, play at Iowa State on Nov. 3, host Baylor on Nov. 10 – and then enter the gauntlet of West Virginia, OSU and TCU. While the Big 12 release says the dates are subject to change, the conference's athletic directors were adamant in not wanting to move games are the schedule's release.
OU said it will reveal the non-conference portion of its schedule at a later date, but those remaining two games are thought to be all but finalized. An opening week trip to UTEP has been on the table, and then an FCS school would visit Owen Field either Sept. 8 or Sept. 15. North Dakota State and Florida A&M are two such schools that have been discussed.
The Sooners went 6-3 in the Big 12 a year ago, finishing 10-3 overall. They had a stunning home loss to Texas Tech before falling to Baylor and Oklahoma State on the road to finish in a tie for third.