NORMAN — A long time ago when Sunny Golloway was still fairly new on the Oklahoma baseball job, I was doing a story on him and what he must have said about 85 times was, “Hey, we sweat the details.”
It is coachspeak, yes, but when you say it 85 times, it is more than that. Then, it may be a philosophy, even a culture.
Getting there requires actually sweating the details, paying attention to the mundane, simple and tedious, even a willingness to be a little boring, which is sometimes referred to as “consistency.”
Golloway’s tenure at OU would appear to bear him out. For even when the Sooners struggle, they seem to put it together in the end. At the least, it would seem, Sooner baseball eventually sweats the details.
But this is not the college baseball season and this is not a college baseball column. It’s just a starting point, a reflection sparked by Norman High football coach Greg Nation, who spent about 10 minutes talking to his team about “the little things,” or the “little bitty things,” following the Tigers’ Friday night scrimmage at Bixby, where they shared the field with the host Spartans, Owasso, Ponca City and Tulsa East Central.
“It’s the little things,” Nation said. “You can’t lose your technique because you want to make a sack 10 yards behind the line of scrimmage.”
He said more than that.
He implored his seniors to bring the underclassmen along. He implored the underclassmen to take the lead and then do the right things, anyway.
Eventually, after departing his team and handling a post-scrimmage interview, he talked about wearing the right socks and keeping your locker clean and showing up on time.
Before he’d left his huddled team, he even mentioned the issues that just keep hitting the biggest football program in town.