The college football season is still six weeks away. But that doesn't mean it's too early to prognosticate what may be in store for Oklahoma.
OU beat writer Jake Trotter examines the key dates on the calendar, forecasting (sometimes in jest) what may lie ahead for the Sooners in 2009.
Sept. 5 vs. Brigham Young
Cost of tickets? $85. Hotel bill? $125. Parking? $38. Concessions? $30. The price of watching your team defeat BYU at Jerry's World? $278 per person, plus gas.
Sept. 12 vs. Idaho State
After falling behind 59-0, Potato Heads wave the white flag at halftime. Landry Jones and Jermie Calhoun offer Sooner fans a glimpse of the future backfield by teaming up for six second-quarter touchdowns. To avoid having to schedule another FCS school, AD Joe Castiglione shocks his fan base days later by announcing the Sooners have agreed to a home and home with Oregon in 2010 and 2011 — provided that Pac-10 officials are not allowed within 200 yards of the stadium.
Oct. 3 at Miami
Sooners roll in their toughest test yet, as Sam Bradford breaks an NCAA record with 25 consecutive completions, 14 of which are caught by possession wideout Cameron Kenney, who emerges as perfect complement to playmakers Jermaine Gresham and Ryan Broyles. Miami proves better than its record indicates, as the Hurricanes rally to make a bowl despite starting the season 0-4.
Oct. 17 vs. Texas
No need for a tiebreaker here. In a great human interest story, Ryan Reynolds is the hero, picking off Colt McCoy for the game-winning touchdown. Bradford takes command of the Heisman race after throwing for five touchdowns. Following the loss, Mack Brown schedules a consultation with Flyover Emporium.
Oct. 24 at Kansas
Ahead 34-21 in the fourth quarter, the Fighting Manginos come within minutes of completing the biggest upset of the season. But after a quick Bradford touchdown pass, Tress Way lays down a gorgeous onside kick, which Brandon Caleb recovers with enough time for one last gasp. A controversial fourth-and-long defensive pass interference keeps the Sooners' game-winning drive alive, which eventually ends in a Mossis Madu touchdown reception. Mangino erupts during the postgame press conference, declaring that college football is all about "dollar signs."
Nov. 7 at Nebraska
Predictions that Nebraska is back turn out to be premature. Gerald McCoy proves that he should've been the preseason Big 12 defensive player of the year instead of Ndamukong Suh as the Sooners hold Nebraska to 127 total yards of offense. Bo Pelini tells reporters afterwards he's scrapping the spread and reverting to Nebraska's roots by employing the power-option offense.
Nov. 14 vs. Texas A&M