Stuck in the middle – Part II
As stated in an earlier blog, forces outside and inside The University are doing their best to hold the Sooners back in football. OU is now between a big time rock and a hard place. We are captive to the orange horde from the north and the south.
OSU with its political cronies at the state capital is intent on holding us back as they use T. Boone’s ill-gotten booty to try to catch up…On the other hand, Texas spends it time manipulating conference leaders to get their own way.
Unfortunately, I have come to a painful conclusion. While can live happily without OSU, we are stuck with them due to political concerns. We are also stuck with Texas… Every conference must have two strong national names in order to represent themselves as a national conference. This is particularly true with the Big 12. Think about this…
The SEC covers eight (8) football states, the Big Ten, ACC, and Pac 12 consists of four (4) to five (5) states each with exceptional high school football and another two (2) or three (3) states that play good football. The Big 12 has one state (Texas) with exceptional football and one state (Oklahoma) with good high school football.
Lose Texas to independent status or to another Power Conference and then the Big 12 will be down to only Oklahoma to provide OU with football players. A bold Texas move to leave the conference would have a have a similar impact that Texas A&M had when they left.
UT and A&M would lock up the best state players in Texas leaving OU to pick up the culls. Then OU would have to beat out OSU for the best high school players in Oklahoma. Of course controlling Oklahoma be accomplished but this feat would not created top ten recruiting classes fro the Sooners.
That’s right, Texas holds all the cards and they know it. OU cannot afford to forget this and be left flat-footed. OU must prepare for the day when and if, Texas chooses to leave the “Little 10” behind.
At the same time it is just as important for OU not to turn their back on Texas. Trusting anything orange is always a big mistake. Texas will always do what is in their best interest. The plan for OU is for Texas to believe that a team arrangement with OU will be in their best interest at that point.
With all this in mind, here is my Plan B for OU.
…..Secure Stoops and his current staff to long-term deals. Pay the coordinators 7 figure salaries to keep them around, particularly Lincoln Riley.
…..Finsh out the west side of the stadium expansion project. 5 star recruits love the sound and smell of construction.
…..Improve the academic status of the university. OU must move into the top 100 U.S. News list. Even better would be a selection to the elite Association of American Universities (AAU). Being on this list would play very favorably with Texas. This list is dotted with Big 12 universities along with Texas.
…..Negotiate under the table with Texas to ensure that OU/Texas become a match set…
…..Run the table this year with no Texas-type slip-ups and appear in the final four. This will allow the Sooners to Finish out a top ten recruiting class, a standard that become reality for years to come.