Former OU All-America safety Roy Williams will be returning to the Owen Field sidelines this season as an analyst for the school's radio broadcasts and as a pregame host. He will work alongside new sideline reporter Chris Plank in both roles.
Williams, 31, who played seven seasons with the Dallas Cowboys and the past two seasons with the Cincinnati Bengals, said he doesn't anticipate playing in the NFL this season. He said he turned down a contract offer from a West Coast team.
“My body is telling me that I am making the right moves, but if the right offer came along I guess I'd have to think about it (playing again),” Williams said.
Nicknamed “Superman” while at OU, Williams in 2001 became the first college player to win the Bronko Nagurski Award (best defensive player) and Jim Thorpe Award (best defensive back) in the same season.
Williams, who lives in Oklahoma City, will be handling the sideline role on home games and selected road games. He said he wants to spend time with his daughter, Leila, who was born Aug. 12, and his girlfriend. They live in California, but plan to move to Oklahoma.
“That's the reason I won't be traveling right now,” he said. “I need to be doing the bonding time with my daughter. That's the responsible thing to do as a father.”
He said he is excited to be associated again with OU, for which he has made several donations. The football team's Roy Williams Strength and Speed Complex is named for him.
“I love Oklahoma football,” he said. “I love my school.”
Williams, who hosted a radio show for two years in Dallas, said he will need to adjust to his new role as a sideline analyst.
“Honestly, I don't know how it's going to go,” he said. “I get too much into the game. I'll get (ticked) off and say ‘What the heck is coach calling?' I got to learn to detach myself from being a former OU player and learn to be politically correct. I'll see how that goes. It will be fun.”
Williams said he plans to be a “player's voice,” helping fans to understand the complexities of pass defenses.
“I got criticized for getting beat on plays and you guys don't even know the coverage,” he said.
As far as the Sooners' preseason No. 1 ranking, he said the team needs to keep a level head.
“I think that they can't get caught up in all the hype,” he said. “I know that coach Stoops is letting them know that. At the end of the day it's about them producing on the football field.”