Oklahoma football: Ex-Sooner QB Steve Davis reaches out to Landry Jones
With Landry Jones poised to break Steve Davis' OU record for most wins by a Sooner quarterback, Davis sent Jones a letter of encouragement.
NORMAN — In the days leading to Landry Jones' 32nd career win as a starter, the man Jones will soon surpass in OU record books listened, read and watched as the Sooners' quarterback was roundly — and sometimes mercilessly — criticized.
Videoview all videos
Oct 9The Oklahoman's Jason Kersey talks about former OU...
Oct 8The Sooners senior quarterback, who gained some...
Oct 8OU's head coach recaps the Sooners' 41-20 win over Texas...
Photoview all photos
NewsOK Related Articles
Saturday, Jones turned in a crisp, poised performance and led Oklahoma to a 41-20 rout at Texas Tech, where he tied Steve Davis' record for wins by an OU starting quarterback.
Two weeks before that, though, Jones turned the ball over twice — each leading to a Kansas State touchdown — and the Wildcats prevailed 24-19 on Owen Field.
“Landry's just gotten really blasted over the past few weeks,” said Davis, who led Oklahoma to a 32-1-1 record over his three seasons as starting quarterback nearly four decades ago.
“Some of the comments have been absolutely ludicrous. (The critics) have only opinion, no sensitivity to what Landry's experiences have been, or what he and his teammates are going through.”
So the two-time national champion Davis decided to do something about it.
During the week before the Texas Tech game, Davis wrote a letter to advise, encourage and praise Jones, who can break Davis' 37-year old record Saturday with a win in the Cotton Bowl over archrival Texas.
“For the past few weeks, Landry and I have been connected through the record,” Davis said. “Even though we're decades and generations apart, I felt compelled to write the letter because I've been in his shoes. I know what his frustrations are.”
Davis was OU's starting quarterback from 1973-75, winning more than his share of games and championships.
But when — during his senior year — the Sooners inexplicably had a 28-game win streak snapped by Kansas, the home crowd booed Davis and his teammates.
“November 8, 1975,” Davis remembered. “We got booed fairly aggressively. It broke my heart, my family's hearts, my teammates' hearts and my coaches' hearts.”
Davis' Sooners responded by winning their final three games, beating Michigan in the Orange Bowl and claiming a second straight national title.
The OU legend, who now lives in Tulsa, used that example in his letter to Jones.
“He just really wanted to encourage me,” Jones said. “Keep leading those guys and keep fighting, regardless of what happens in the next game or the last game.”
Davis said he's been impressed with Jones' maturity over the past few weeks. The OU senior stood in front of reporters and took full responsibility for the Kansas State loss several times before Saturday's record-tying performance.
Sports Photo Galleriesview all
- 35920Oklahoma tornadoes: The 'Big Dog,' the little boy and the hug that triumphs over tragedy
- 15377Bradley Cooper, Zach Galifianakis, Ed Helms drink in success of 'Hangover' series
- 9806Hobby Lobby argues case before federal judges
- 9680Oklahoma tornadoes: Woman meets the military officer who shared the clothes off his back
- 9189Oklahoma tornadoes: Thunder reverses the role, takes a turn at cheering on the community
- 7926Blake Shelton's "Healing the Heartland" televised tornado benefit set for Wednesday at Chesapeake Energy Arena
- 7748Story behind the photo: Family members describe desperate search for one another after EF5 twister