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Superstitions, wacky traditions rule the day for Bedlam fans

From avoiding the game altogether to donning lucky shirts, Bedlam fans run the gamut of superstitions and traditions during Bedlam game week.
BY MIKE BALDWIN, Staff Writer, Published: November 26, 2010

Jeff Kukuk is so devoted to the Sooners he will not attend Saturday's Bedlam game at Boone Pickens Stadium in Stillwater.

It has nothing to do with Oklahoma being the visiting team, knowing Oklahoma State fans might choose some choice words to remind him he's not in Norman. Kukuk's reasoning is if he's at the stadium history says the Sooners probably will lose.

Rooting for the Cowboys and Sooners can be a religious experience for some, so much so some fans adhere to superstitions or rituals.

Kukuk, from Perry, said the Sooners are 1-3 when he's attended Bedlam.

His first game was OSU's 12-0 win nearly two decades ago that ended a 19-year Cowboys' drought. He also attended OU's back-to-back losses when Les Miles was OSU's coach in 2001 and 2002. The only game he attended the Sooners won was the 2000 game in Stillwater.

"Even that year I turned my back and watched on the Jumbotron as Derrick Strait tipped away the winning TD pass," Kukuk said. "I was there when Rashaun Woods was still open. The last seven years I've watched at home on my TV and OU has won every game. I will never go to another Bedlam game."

Larry Sumpter is a converted OSU fan. Growing up his father, brothers, cousins, almost everyone he knew, were die hard Sooner fans. He attended a few OU games. But when deciding his major, he realized OSU best met his professional goals.

Sumpter attended OSU for four years and lived in Stillwater another three years. He now bleeds orange and follows all OSU sports teams, including the equestrian team. He's so devoted to the Pokes he has a strange ritual.

"It may sound crazy but I talk to my OSU flag before every game," Sumpter said. "I wear the same shirt every week as long as we're winning. If we lose I change shirts for the next game.

"I was out of town when we played Nebraska. I didn't have my lucky OSU shirt on and we lost. And I always post the OSU fight song on Facebook on game day."

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