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Bob Stoops retires as Oklahoma head coach

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  • Bob Stoops retires as Oklahoma head coach

    Bruce Feldman @BruceFeldmanCFB
    BREAKING Can confirm Oklahoman report that Bob Stoops is retiring at #OU, effective immediately.

    Lincoln Riley will become the new HC
    18 years at OU, 4 years left on his contract.
    If you're not following the Astros, you are doing Houston sports wrong.

  • #2
    Bob Stoops: A Coaching Eulogy

    FBS
    I want to thank you all for coming here today, especially on such short notice. Each and every one of us thought we’d be here some day, but none of us thought someday would be today. Bob Stoops’s coaching career, born in 1983 as a graduate assistant at Iowa, laid his coaching career to rest on Wednesday. After 33 years — 33 long, fruitful years — Bob looked upon his full trophy case, his full bank account to boot and, in remembrance of his father, Ron, Sr., gone too soon at age 54, and decided to give his remaining years to his wife and his three children.

    Before we get started, I’d like to mention a few of the dignitaries here with us. Steve Spurrier and Frank Beamer are here, gracious in welcoming Coach Stoops into their club. I see the few active national championship-winning coaches — Nick Saban and Urban Meyer, Dabo Swinney and Jimbo Fisher. We made sure to sit you all on opposite corners of the sanctuary, just in case a meteor hits us today. We can’t afford to lose any more of you. I see Coach Stoops’s former assistants who later became head coaches — Kevin Sumlin and Kevin Wilson, Mike Leach and Mike Stoops, Jay Norvell, Mark Mangino, and of course Coach Riley. Don’t think I don’t see you, too, Brent Venables. Dabo, he should be with those coaches; you’ve got to stop spoiling him there so dadgum much. And here in front of me I see the Big 12 contingent. I want to thank you all for wearing your crimson lapel pins. I know that was extremely difficult for many of you. Coach Brown and Coach Gundy, you especially deserve mention. The two of you put together Hall of Fame careers — don’t be shy, it’s true — and each of you will forever be mentioned with Coach Stoops. I can only imagine the difficulty Bob put each of you through over the years, but I know you two know you were both better for it.

    Those of you who have attended these coaching funerals before will notice I have some company with me in the pulpit today. We thought it only appropriate The Pride of Oklahoma’s horns section accompany the proceedings today. Boys, go ahead and give everybody a taste. Our Big 12 friends won’t need much reminding.

    Bum ba dum PAAA bum ba dum pa bum ba dum PAAA bum ba dum pa bum ba dum PAAAAA bum ba dum OK-U

    Get used to that.

    When Bob Stoops arrived at Oklahoma in 1999, just 39 years old with no head coaching experience, the Bowl Championship Series was a year old and Oklahoma was a complete afterthought in the Big 12 Conference. The Sooners went 8-16 their first three years in the league while schools like Nebraska, Kansas State, Texas and Texas A&M played in the important games. Eighteen seasons later, the BCS no longer exists, a third of the Big 12 membership defected and OU is the king of the conference. When it was played, the Big 12 Championship was played in Kansas City and Dallas, but it ran through Norman.

    Bob won 10 Big 12 titles in his 18 seasons, and in two of the other eight the Big 12 champion had to beat Oklahoma to get there. Coach Stoops’s teams weren’t just good, especially in the early years, they captured the aura of invincibility that you older folks may remember in Tom Osborne’s Nebraska teams or Coach Bryant’s Alabama teams. The way people look at Alabama today, that’s how people viewed Oklahoma in the early 2000’s. In five years, his Sooners ripped off 60 wins in 67 games, three Big 12 championships, four Big 12 South championships, three national title appearances, a 21-game winning streak, a national championship and five straight finishes in the top six of both polls.

    Bum ba dum PAAA bum ba dum pa bum ba dum PAAA bum ba dum pa bum ba dum PAAAAA bum ba dum OK-U

    They didn’t always win, though they usually did. And when they didn’t, it wasn’t just another loss — it was an event. You knew you had accomplished something significant when you beat Oklahoma. Coach Brown, do you remember what happened when your boys finally snapped the streak in ’05? What did the fans do? For five minutes, five solid, loud minutes, they stayed in the stands and they chanted one thing, and Dear Lord forgive me for saying this in your pulpit, “OU sucks!” It wasn’t that Texas had won, it was that Oklahoma had lost.

    Coach Stoops’s teams eventually lost that aura of invincibility — stay 18 years in one place and eventually the game will remind you of your human fallibility. Yes, even you, Coach Saban. But as each challenger rose in the Big 12, more often than not Oklahoma was there to resist them with force.

    Twice Texas Tech came to Norman with a chance to go to the Big 12 Championship. Coach Stoops beat them 60-15 and 65-21.

    Bum ba dum PAAA bum ba dum pa bum ba dum PAAA bum ba dum pa bum ba dum PAAAAA bum ba dum OK-U

    Three times in the last four years, Oklahoma State arrived in Bedlam knowing a win would give them a conference championship. Oklahoma won each time.

    Bum ba dum PAAA bum ba dum pa bum ba dum PAAA bum ba dum pa bum ba dum PAAAAA bum ba dum OK-U

    Eight times Coach Stoops played in the Big 12 Championship. Seven times he won, and the other his team was so far ahead in the BCS standings OU went to the national championship game anyway.

    Bum ba dum PAAA bum ba dum pa bum ba dum PAAA bum ba dum pa bum ba dum PAAAAA bum ba dum OK-U

    And, I’m sorry Coach Brown, we have to mention it, there were so many Red River blowouts. 63-14 in 2000.

    Bum ba dum PAAA bum ba dum pa bum ba dum PAAA bum ba dum pa bum ba dum PAAAAA bum ba dum OK-U

    65-13 in 2003.

    Bum ba dum PAAA bum ba dum pa bum ba dum PAAA bum ba dum pa bum ba dum PAAAAA bum ba dum OK-U

    55-17 in 2011.

    Bum ba dum PAAA bum ba dum pa bum ba dum PAAA bum ba dum pa bum ba dum PAAAAA bum ba dum OK-U

    63-21 in 2012.

    Bum ba dum PAAA bum ba dum pa bum ba dum PAAA bum ba dum pa bum ba dum PAAAAA bum ba dum OK-U

    And who can forget 14-3 in 2001?

    Bum ba dum PAAA bum ba dum pa bum ba dum PAAA bum ba dum pa bum ba dum PAAAAA bum ba dum OK-U

    So many promising Texas seasons were forever tainted or tossed in the trash bin altogether on the Fair Park grounds every second Saturday in October, and when you’re the head coach at Oklahoma that earns you more than a simple victory.

    Of course, you don’t stay 18 years in one place without changing with the times, and Coach Stoops was no different. Here was a defensive guy that saw the offensive revolution coming in college football before anybody. Heck, he may even started it. Look at the roster of offensive coaches that worked for Coach Stoops: Leach, Sumlin, Wilson, Heupel, Riley. The player with the most passing yards in Big 12 history is a Sooner.

    How’s this for evolution? In the defining win of Coach Stoops’s early career, beating Florida State for the 2000 national championship, the Sooners gained 270 yards — total — and scored 13 points. In the defining win of Coach Stoops’s late career, beating Alabama in the Sugar Bowl to end the 2013 season, the Sooners threw for 348 yards and scored 45 points on a Nick Saban defense.

    Bum ba dum PAAA bum ba dum pa bum ba dum PAAA bum ba dum pa bum ba dum PAAAAA bum ba dum OK-U

    Coach Stoops leaves the game at age 56 with a resume that would take others 10 lifetimes to accomplish. Eleven top 10 finishes. More Big 12 championships — ten — than home losses — nine. He lost in back-to-back weeks three times in 18 years. How many of you can say that? He never let the trappings of success change the way he did things, whether it be how his teams played, how he managed his staff or even where he recruited.

    With plenty of good years still ahead of him, Coach Stoops walked away to stand arm-in-arm with a roster of legends unmatched by any school in college football: Owen, Wilkinson, Switzer and Stoops. Coach Riley, he leaves you a program running like a brand new Corvette with a new set of tires and a fresh oil change — and a shadow to stand in that looms as tall as Memorial Stadium itself.

    Like all of you, there is more to Bob Stoops than just Coach, and on Wednesday he made that declaration permanent in a way that many of you could not or would not. It’s funny, Mrs. Stoops is a successful businesswoman herself, and somewhere out there is an entire industry of women wondering why we’re making such a fuss over Carol’s husband. Coach Stoops has chosen to walk into his next life and leave the rest of us behind in this one. And for that we’re hurting, we’re remorseful, but we’re grateful for what we had, and we’re happy for you and your family, Coach Stoops.

    I can think of only one way to send you out of here today. Play us out, boys.

    Bum ba dum PAAA bum ba dum pa bum ba dum PAAA bum ba dum pa bum ba dum PAAAAA bum ba dum OK-U
    If you're not following the Astros, you are doing Houston sports wrong.

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