Claremore Daily Progress

Sports

December 3, 2012

OU misses BCS bowl, will battle Texas A&M in Cotton

ARLINGTON, Texas — After missing out on the BCS, Big 12 co-champion Oklahoma will instead take on Johnny Football and former conference rival Texas A&M in the Cotton Bowl in Arlington, Texas.

The 12th-ranked Sooners (10-2) had their chances of an at-large BCS bid extinguished Sunday when Mid-American Conference champion Northern Illinois moved up far enough to claim an automatic bid.

Instead, they'll take on Heisman Trophy contender Johnny Manziel and the 10th-ranked Aggies, who had been divisional rivals and yearly opponents for the past 16 seasons before A&M left for the Southeastern Conference. The game will be played Jan. 4 at Dallas Cowboys Stadium.

"We hit a home run today,'' Cotton Bowl chairman Tommy Bain said. "When our team selection committee met for the first time a few weeks ago, we circled this matchup as the one we most wanted, and the cards fell in our favor today.''

The Sooners split the Big 12 title with Kansas State, but the Wildcats got the league's automatic bid because they won the head-to-head matchup in Norman, Okla., in September.

At 11th in Sunday's BCS standings, Oklahoma was the highest-ranked eligible team for an at-large bid that got left out of the field. There were four SEC teams stacked in the standings ahead of them, but none - including A&M - could have been picked because Alabama and Florida were already representing the conference.

With Northern Illinois moving up to 15th - finishing in the top 16 and ahead of all Big Ten and Big East schools to qualify - Oklahoma became available to the Cotton Bowl.

It's the Sooners' first time playing in the game since beating Arkansas 10-3 in the 2002 game. A&M lost to LSU 41-24 in the 2011 game, two seasons ago.

"The Cotton Bowl has long been a marquee postseason destination, and we're excited about being selected to play there a second time,'' coach Bob Stoops said. "Cowboys Stadium is a great venue, and I know Sooner fans will be excited to make the trip to support us.''

Bain pointed out that Manziel could potentially be the first Heisman Trophy winner to play in the Cotton Bowl in 14 years - Texas' Ricky Williams in 1999 is the most recent to do so - and that both programs are finishing strong seasons. But that's not all.

"To me, the most exciting aspect of this game is the special friendship that exists between the two head coaches. Texas A&M coach Kevin Sumlin spent five seasons on the OU coaching staff under Bob Stoops,'' Bain said. "It's going to be fun getting them back together at this year's Classic.''

Sumlin was on Stoops' staff from 2003-07, leaving to become Houston's head coach after being a co-offensive coordinator at the end of his time with the Sooners. He's in his first season at Texas A&M and this will be his first chance to coach against his former boss.

"Our football team is excited to play another game against a storied program such as Oklahoma. We have been led all year by a great group of seniors and to be rewarded with a great experience like the Cotton Bowl is something they will cherish,'' Sumlin said.

"Plenty of their family and friends will be able to watch them play as well and the hospitality is second to none.''

Oklahoma will be trying to match a school record with a fourth straight bowl win. The teams split their last two meetings as Big 12 rivals, each winning at home.

 

1
Text Only
Sports
  • DSC_0344web.jpg ‘Lucky 7’ comes through in the 3rd

    Over the course of his four-year baseball career at Verdigris High School, third baseman Ryan Skalnik has had his share of memorable at-bats.
    None more important than Tuesday’s appearance in the Large School East-West All-State Game at J.L. Johnson Stadium in Tulsa.
    Skalnik, who was the lone senior this season for Verdigris and a four-time Class 3A state champion, thrived under pressure in the top of the third inning for the East.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • BASEBALL: Larue, Skalnik power East to 3-0 victory

    The East blanked the West 3-0 in the Large School All-State Baseball Game Tuesday night at J. L. Johnson Stadium on the campus of Oral Roberts University.
    Claremore catcher Matt Whatley and third baseman Ryan Skalnik of Verdigris represented Rogers County in the contest.
    Skalnik finished 1-for-3 with a pair of RBI's.  Whatley was 0-for-1 with a walk.

    July 30, 2014

  • FISHFRYweb.jpg Claremore QB Club holds Fish Fry Aug. 2

    The Claremore Zebra Quarterback Club will hold its annual Fish Fry fundraiser on Aug. 2 at the Claremore High School cafeteria.

    July 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Iowa offers free tuition to boost football sales

    The University of Iowa is offering a year's worth of free tuition to five randomly selected students who've purchased season tickets for the 2014 football season.

    July 30, 2014

  • FOOTBALL: Auburn, Clemson agree to play in 2016, 2017

    Auburn and Clemson have agreed to play a home-and-home series in 2016 and 2017.

    The schools announced the deal on Wednesday.

    July 30, 2014

  • QB questions abound in SEC

    Quarterback battles and signal-caller questions abound in the Southeastern Conference going into preseason camps around the league.

    Big names, not so much.

    Division favorites Alabama and South Carolina will be banking on new starters. Ditto for Texas A&M, Georgia and defending East Division champion Missouri.

    July 30, 2014

  • MLB: Indians trade starting pitcher Justin Masterson to Cardinals

    Justin Masterson began the season as the Indians' ace. He'll end it with a different team in a different league.

    Cleveland traded the disappointing Masterson on Wednesday to the St. Louis Cardinals, a deal that will allow the Indians to get something in return for the 29-year-old righty who was in his final year under contract.

    July 30, 2014

  • Cop once drew gun on squirrel-hunting QB Winston

    Heisman Trophy winner Jameis Winston and Florida State teammate Chris Casher were held at gunpoint by campus police nearly two years ago while hunting squirrels with a pellet gun, police say.

    July 30, 2014

  • NFL: Cowboys sign OL Tyron Smith to 8-year deal

    Tyron Smith has a new contract that will probably make him the most important blocker for the next Dallas quarterback after Tony Romo.

    The Pro Bowl left tackle signed an eight-year, $98 million extension Wednesday that pushes the total value of his deal to $110 million over 10 years, locking him up through 2023.

    July 30, 2014

  • NCAA proposed settlement raises medical questions

    A key feature of a proposed settlement of a head-injury lawsuit against the NCAA is the creation of a $70 million fund to pay for medical evaluations of current and former college players in several sports. The provision raises some sticky medical questions.

    July 30, 2014