November 21, 2007

Scouting the Sooners

Happy Thanksgiving! Bedlam week!

While the all-important day of family togetherness, overeating and football is upon us all, most gridiron fans are more concerned with getting to Saturday and yet another Bedlam showdown. This year, Oklahoma State heads to Norman to take on an Oklahoma team which is a national title contender coming off a loss at Texas Tech last weekend. Up until that point, the Sooners had managed to survive losing at Colorado to climb up in the BCS rankings while other big-time teams were getting shot down like pheasant in the winter. But OU went to Lubbock (aka "The Twilight Zone") and came back from the edge of forever with a second loss, knocking it out of championship consideration.

But the Sooners still have a lot to play for. A win this weekend secures a trip to San Antonio and the Big 12 championship game against either Kansas or Missouri. Also, a win this weekend keeps its winning streak against the Cowboys - currently at four games - alive.

On the flip side, the Cowboys are coming into this game with nothing to lose, finally securing bowl-eligibility last week against Baylor. With a dangerously-balanced offense, could OSU find a way to break through a Sooner defense which has ranked high all season but hasn't hit on all cylinders the past two weeks? Let's find out more about those Sooners.

2006 record: 11-3 (7-1 Big 12); lost Fiesta Bowl to Boise State
Record so far this season: 9-2 (5-2)
Last game: Loss, 34-27 at Texas Tech
Game time: 2:30 p.m. at Gaylord Family Stadium (TV: FSN)
Current ranking: Ranked 10th in both the AP Poll and BCS Rankings
Fact of the week: Now the teams fight for the Bedlam Bell, but the first trophy used in competition between Oklahoma and Oklahoma A&M was The Douglas Cup. It was the prize for an annual track meet between OAMC, OU, Alva Normal College , Central Normal of Edmond and Kingfisher College . The first year the cup was up for grabs was 1900. The Aggies won it that year, as well as in 1901 and 1902. Three-consecutive wins meant that OAMC got to keep the trophy, but OU protested the 1902 meet because the pole vault was not held due to darkness. The next day, OU held their own pole vault contest and declared themselves the winners of the cup. A few weeks later, the trophy went missing. A&M students believed it was stolen by OU, so they went to Norman and retrieved it, burying it under Old Central for safe keeping. It's now in Heritage Hall. And if you're wondering why Bedlam has a "Bedlam Bell" as a prize these days, it's because the Cowboys and Sooners used to compete for the Old Central bell clapper, with the winner holding it for a year until the next game.

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