*NCAA Division II football can be tough — even for former Division I players. Former Oklahoma State quarterback Johnny Deaton has thrown 10 interceptions compared to six touchdowns this season for Northeastern State.
*Langston's game at 2 p.m. Saturday against Texas College will be televised by Cox 3. The game at W.E. Anderson Stadium will be the capper to Langston's homecoming festivities, and the Lions (3-3) will be favored to beat a struggling Texas College club (1-5). Flip a coin whether it's best to watch the game from the easy chair or in person. But nothing beats sitting in the stands to watch the LU Pride Marching Band. Guaranteed good stuff.
As a side note, two former pro football studs will be in the house — former Kansas City Chiefs running back Mike Garrett, now the Langston athletic director, and former Green Bay Packers linebacker George Cumby, who is Texas College's head coach.
*Bacone has allowed just 13 total points over its last three games. The defense has pitched two consecutive shutouts, including a 34-0 rout of Southwestern Assemblies of God (Texas) last Saturday. Bacone (4-3) forced seven turnovers, with defensive back Isaac Twenty intercepting two passes. And before you ask, yes, the Miami, Fla., native wears jersey No. 20.
*Panhandle State, coached by former Weatherford High and Texas Longhorns lineman Russell Gaskamp, will play an Oklahoma team for the first time this season on Saturday. The Aggies (3-2) will bus 385 miles from Goodwell to Muskogee to play Bacone. Panhandle State's previous opponents were from Missouri, Illinois, Colorado and Texas.
“We're excited to be playing our first game this season against an Oklahoma school,” Gaskamp said.
*Oklahoma Baptist had 85 players suited up for its first football scrimmage in more than 70 years on Saturday in Shawnee. The Bison also hosted 80 recruits.
BITS AND PIECES
*Bryan Byars of University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma was named Sooner Athletic Conference Defensive Soccer Player of the Week. The Drovers' goalkeeper posted his eighth and ninth shutouts of the season. No. 10 came Tuesday night, when third-ranked USAO beat Mid-America Christian, 1-0. Byars, a high school All-American from Putnam City North, leads the NAIA with 0.18 goals against average.
*Former Edmond North runner Hannah Helker is en route to becoming one of the top athletes in Oklahoma Baptist history. Only a sophomore — and already a five-time NAIA All-American — Helker was named Sooner Athletic Conference Athlete of the Week. She has won all three cross country races she's competed in this fall; she finished a 5-kilometer course in 17 minutes, 10 seconds at the recent Bison Invitational. Helker also competes in track and field during the spring.