Oklahoma Sooners front and back design.
The Oklahoma Sooners are the athletic teams that represent the University of Oklahoma, located in Norman. The 19 males’s and ladies’s university groups are called the “Sooners”, a recommendation to a nickname provided to the early participants in the Land Rush of 1889, which initially opened the Unassigned Lands in the future state of Oklahoma to non-native settlement. The university’s athletic teams compete in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA)’s Division I in the Big 12 Conference. The university’s current athletic director is Joe Castiglione.
The Sooners have actually been participating in college football since 1895. Calling Gaylord Family Oklahoma Memorial Stadium at Owen Field home, the team has actually won many championship game, 41 conference championships (consisting of every Big Seven championship granted), and 7 Associated Press National Championships, making the Sooners football program the most decorated in the Big 12. Oklahoma has scored the most points in Division I-A football history despite the fact they have played over 60 less games than the second location school on that list. OU also has the greatest gaining percentage of any team since the start of the AP poll in 1936.
The Sooners have 7 national championships in football, with the 1950, 1955, 1956, 1974, 1975, 1985, and 2000 seasons featuring the top team in the Associated Press last poll, and the 2000 Bowl Championship Series National Championship as well. This number is 3rd only to the Notre Dame Fighting Irish and the Alabama Crimson Tide (who have 9) for the most AP titles of any Division I college football team after the end of World War II (which is typically utilized as the division between periods in college football).
In addition to these seven acknowledged national championships there are also nine additional years in which the NCAA’s official record book recognizes the Sooners as national champions: 1949, 1953, 1957, 1967, 1973, 1978, 1980, 1986, 2003. The University of Oklahoma does not acknowledge these additional “championships”, as they were not awarded by the Associated Press, United Press International (UPI), USA Today Coaches Poll, or the Bowl Championship Series (BCS).
Individual success is also a major part of Oklahoma football; five Heisman Trophy winners (Billy Vessels, Steve Owens, Billy Sims, Jason White and Sam Bradford) are surrounded by numerous other award winners, including NFL MVP Award winner Adrian Peterson, Joe Washington, Brian Bosworth, Tony Casillas, Greg Pruitt, Josh Heupel, Jerry Tubbs, Rocky Calmus, Granville Liggins, Teddy Lehman, Lee Roy Selmon, Roy Williams, Tommy McDonald, Mark Clayton, Tommie Harris, J.C. Watts, Keith Jackson and Jammal Brown. More than a dozen Sooner players have been inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame. Oklahoma has more Butkus award winners than other school.
Coaches Bennie Owen, Bud Wilkinson, and Barry Switzer have travelled through the gameday tunnel for the Sooners, each on his method to the College Football Hall of Fame. Owen was the first extremely successful coach at OU and was a major supporter of the forward pass, which at the millenium was not popular. The playing surface at Oklahoma’s Gaylord Family Oklahoma Memorial Stadium is widely known as Owen Field in honor of his long tenure and dedication to the university. Wilkinson left lots of imprints on the game, such as the 5-2 defense with five linemen and two linebackers; the perfection of the Split-T, an early option offense; 3 championship games; and his teams set the NCAA Division 1 record for successive wins at 47. The record of 47 straight wins is extensively considered among the great achievements in sports, and a streak that is unlikely to be broken (started October 10, 1953 vs. Texas and ended in 1957 with a loss to Notre Dame 7– 0). Switzer won 3 championship games (The National Championship of 1975 is highly questionable, Arizona State went 12– 0 that season while Oklahoma was 11– 1) and forged probably the fiercest rushing offense ever, the Oklahoma wishbone formation, throughout the 1970s and 1980s. Though the end of Switzer’s tenure at Oklahoma was marked by controversy and poor player habits, he is usually well regarded by both his previous players and Sooner fans. Throughout his 16 years as the Sooners’ head coach, Switzer led his team to 12 conference championships and never lost more than 2 games in a row. His gaining percentage of.837 stands as the fourth-highest in the history of 1-A football. Other Hall of Fame coaches whose period included stints at the University of Oklahoma are Lawrence “Biff” Jones and Jim Tatum.