Non-conference games in the Stoops Era

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2004: Bowling Green, Houston, Oregon

Not as strong, and while it did include a Pac-10 team, Oklahoma wasn’t really given any challenges with this slate. Bowling Green killed it in the MAC in 2004, and out of OU’s three OOC games, the BGSU Falcons put up the most points on Oklahoma, and had the smallest margin of loss. Houston was a pitiful 3-8 CUSA team that season, and Oregon was one game away from bowl eligibility. Once again, another season where Oklahoma scheduled somewhat lightly and still got to the championship game. Grade: C

2005: Texas Christian, Tulsa, at UCLA

8-4 doesn’t seem too bad for a team rebuilding following two championship caliber teams. However, their non-conference was brutal in retrospect. Sure they didn’t look too threatening at the time, but the Horned Frogs began their reign of terror as a mid-major in 2005, and knocked off OU in Norman. Tulsa kept it relatively close in Norman. And the Bruins had a solid 2005. OU’s OOC slate had a combined record of 30-7, and for what it’s worth, all three of these teams won their bowl game that year. Maybe my bias wants to call this a tougher slate, because OU had a bad season, but the stats don’t lie. All three had really good seasons. Grade: A-

2006: Alabama-Birmingham, Washington, at Oregon, Middle Tennessee State

All of these teams were pretty average, minus UAB, who surprisingly gave Oklahoma a run for their money. However, props to OU for scheduling two Pac-10 teams, though, that trip to Eugene was the biggest rip-off if I’ve ever seen one. The Sooners did smash MTSU right before Texas, but that didn’t help them too much as the Longhorns beat them a second consecutive year. All in all, this was slate was nothing too special, and one OU should’ve swept, but thanks to the referees, Oklahoma has one less road win against an AQ school on their resume. Grade: C

2007: North Texas, Miami, Utah State, at Tulsa

Who wasn’t excited for this slate? Oklahoma renewed its rivalry with the Hurricanes, and got an instate road trip to the Golden Hurricane. The Sooners smashed their two cupcakes, and in retropsect, that wasn’t a great slate of teams, but the fact OU got Miami in Norman was a fun Saturday for Sooner and Hurricane fans. Grade: B-