Tommy’s early Final Four watch

tcpickemSoonerguy Tommy give us his weekly status of the most likely final four teams, after Saturday's games.

The SEC lovers might not like this. Too bad.

See Tommy's column in the Dallas Morning News here.



Switzer appearanceThe Sooners' 2014 debut was solid, but one particular new wrinkle that scored with fans was the fourth quarter fog-filled introduction of The King, Barry Switzer, from the north end zone tunnel. Nobody is revered in Norman more than Switzer -- he has rock star status -- and that was evident from the huge roar and standing O he received from those fans who remained to watch the blow-out.

OU plans on a different 4th quarter introduction of Sooner greats - a trick to keep fans from exiting the stadium for O'Connell's before the final gun. It might just work.


Jordan Evans' first quarter ejection for "targeting" won't keep him from playing this week against Tulsa. By all accounts, Evans is the last player to ever play dirty. Coach Bob Stoops is expecting an explanation from conference officials this week.

On the other hand, LB Eric Striker did not get ejected. But not for the trying of Louisiana Tech RB Kenneth Dixon, who, according to Striker flopped like Lebron James, on one play.

"He was trying to do what he had to do to help his team, so that's what he did. It was pretty funny, though," Striker said.


The SEC stumbled a little in the first game of the season. But Stoops would not be baited into talking about that at his press conference Monday. "This isn't the out-of-season where I cause waves," he said.


OU Band Director Jason Stolarik poured salt in the wounds of band alumni by changing the pre-game tradition of warming up on Carpenter Hall lawn, instead giving a seated band concert on the Wagner Hall lawn. The new location actually puts them closer to the stadium and greater exposure to fans.

A bigger no-no was Stolarik allowing some band members to carry music on the field at halftime. To put that in perspective, band nerds consider that an elementary school crutch. It hasn't happened at OU in at least 45 years.


Sooner LB Frank Shannon did not play Saturday because OU President David Boren made clear he didn't want to see him in the game, given that Boren's administration is appealing a district judge order that stays the university's suspension of Shannon for alleged sex abuse.

But Shannon was suited up on the sidelines Saturday night. A reminder to Boren that Bob Stoops is the coach and still controls the sidelines.


Hunter’s Top 5 – the best barbecue in Norman

huntertop5If you are coming to Norman on Saturday for the game, come early enough to pick up some barbecue. Here are my Top 5 BBQ places in my hometown:
  1. 1. Ray's Smokehouse Barbecue. 1514 W. Lindsey. You can't beat Ray's. Best combo of ribs and barbecue sauce and friendly service. The stack of firewood out back proves they know how to smoke meat.
  2. 2. Van's Pig Stand. 320 N. Porter. This place is just one good barbecue sauce away from challenging Ray's. Their smoked turkey at Christmas time is great. Their ribs are good. Has the funny look to the place. Did it used to be a service station?
  3. 3. Bill Sims BBQ. 2226 W. Main. Good stop before an OU game. The pictures on the wall of past Sooners will get you going.
  4. 4. Rudy's Country Store and Bar-B-Q. 3450 Chautauqua (at intersection with Highway 9). This place gets on the list because it hosts the Bob Stoops radio show. It is a fun way to spend a Thursday night.
  5. 5. Sooner Legends. 1200 24th Ave. SW. Haven't been there but other people say the portions are huge.
(Each week Hunter will give us his top 5 of just about anything. Sometimes it might be about football.)

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2014 Sooner Schedule

OU 48 Louisiana Tech 16
Sept 6 at Tulsa 11 am (ABC/ESPN)
Sep. 13 Tennessee 7 pm (ABC/ESPN)
Sept 20 at West Virginia
Oct 4 at TCU
Oct 11 Texas - Dallas
Oct 18 Kansas St
Nov 1 at Iowa St
Nov 8 Baylor
Nov 15 at Texas Tech
Nov 22 Kansas
Dec 6 Oklahoma St

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