The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

October 6, 2012

Few can match Tech against OU

By Bruce Campbell, Staff Writer
Enid News and Eagle

ENID, Okla. — Some numbers to look at for today’s Oklahoma at Texas Tech game with an appreciation for the Red Raiders’ three straight wins over the Sooners at Lubbock.

No other current or past Big 12 team has back-to-back home wins over the Sooners during the Bob Stoops era. Stoops is 2-4 on the road against Texas Tech. Tech’s five wins over Stoops matches that of Texas’ Mack Brown.

Former Big 12 members Colorado (2-1) and Nebraska (2-1) were the only past or current conference teams who had winning records over Stoops at home.

Stoops’ other road records against current or former Big 12 teams include Baylor (6-1), Missouri (2-1), Oklahoma State (5-2), Texas A&M (4-2), Kansas (4-0), Kansas State (4-0) and Iowa State (3-0). He will play at West Virginia and TCU for the first time this season.

While Lubbock is a tough place to play, one would think West Texas would be a second home for the Sooners.

That area has been a solid recruiting area for OU in the past, and there’s a lot of OU execs in the oil patch, especially in nearby Midland and Odessa.

Some crazy things have happened in this series.

Tech’s 41-38 stunner over OU last season broke the Sooners’ 39-game home winning streak. What was just as stunning was the Red Raiders not winning a game the rest of the season.

On the other side, one of OU’s biggest road upsets was a 32-21 win over the Red Raiders in 1998 when the Sooners were 4-8. OU had lost four straight and six of its last seven, and the season had been written off.

The Sooners, after a 38-28 loss in 1999 at Lubbock, had to take a bus home after problems with its charter flight.

The OU-Tech series also is an example of the game the year before not meaning much.

No team has had back-to-back wins in the series since 2003-04 when the Sooners recorded wins of 56-25 and 28-13.

Since then, the series has resembled a roller coaster.

In 2004, OU won 28-13, but lost the next season, 23-21.

In 2006, OU outlasted the Red Raiders, 34-24, but lost the next season, 34-27.

OU blew out then No. 2-ranked Tech, 65-2 in 2008, only to lose 41-13 the next season in what was arguably the worst game execution wise in the Stoops era.

In 2010, OU routed the Red Raiders, 45-7, only to be upset the next season, 41-38.

Who knows about this year? A Tech defense which was ranked No. 117 nationally a year ago, is leading the nation in total defense going into this week.

A lot has been said about Stoops’ ability to get his team ready after an open date.

Stoops is 16-5 in the regular season (including Big 12 championships) when he’s had an extra week to prepare. However, the Sooners have lost after their last two open dates — Baylor 45-38 last season, and Kansas State, 24-19 two weeks ago.

Stoops’ other three open-date losses were to Kansas State, 2003 Big 12 Championship; Texas, 2006 and Miami, Fla., 2009.

This will be OU’s first 2:30 p.m. kickoff of the season. It might be hard to believe, but the Sooners played only two afternoon games a year ago.

If the Sooners lose today, they might be playing a lot more afternoon or morning games. Next week’s OU-Texas game is set for 11 a.m.

Campbell is a News & Eagle sports writer.