We are at the midpoint of calendar year 2017, but it also marks the end of what has been a sensational year of collegiate sports for those who represent as well as root for the Oklahoma Sooners.
This being the final day of June 2017, we thought it appropriate and fitting to do a fiscal-year, numerical accounting of some of the Sooners’ exemplary sports accomplishments of 2016-17.
Recently retired OU football coach Bob Stoops has always said student-athletes want to come to Oklahoma because they want to win championships. And that statement applies to more than just football and more than just conference championships.
An article on the OU athletic website about the banner year of championships achieved by Sooner sports programs this past school year pulled a quote from former football coach Barry Switzer out of the archives that seems more than fitting to describe the current state of sports programming at the University of Oklahoma:
“People don’t know what it means to be champions. Oklahoma invented it.”
The Sooners have won at least one national championship in NCAA athletic competition in each of the last five years, and the seven they have won in the last two years are more than any other school in the country.
Figures don’t lie, and here are some highly noteworthy ones:
1 – Andrew Harris and Spencer Papa won the NCAA doubles championship in tennis, the first individual national title in the history of Sooner tennis. As a team, the OU men’s tennis squad has finished as the runner-up in three of the past four NCAA Men’s Tennis Championships.
2 – The Sooners won their second consecutive Big 12 championship in football in 2016 and 10th overall under Bob Stoops.
3 – Current consecutive unbeaten seasons by the OU men’s gymnastics team, including a perfect 26-0 this season.
4 – National team championships won by the University of Oklahoma in 2016-17 (softball, men’s and women’s gymnastics, men’s golf).
5 – Number of individual national championships won by OU student-athletes in 2016-17.
6 – The Sooner softball team has appeared in six of the last seven Women’s College World Series, and has walked off as the national champion in three of those years (2013, 2016, 2017).
6 – Consecutive Big 12 softball championships won by Oklahoma.
9-0 – OU football ran the table in the Big 12 in 2016, the first team to go 9-0 in league play in Big 12 history.
11 – Oklahoma won its 11th national championship in men’s gymnastics this season and third consecutive national title.
13 – The OU men’s golf team entered the 2017 NCAA Men’s Golf Championship as the No. 13 seed, but ended its tournament run with a win over defending national champion Oregon for the national championship, the program’s second in history (OU’s last national championship in men’s golf was in 1989).
18 – Seasons as the head coach of the Sooners before Bob Stoops retirement, announced in early June. That also is the number of consecutive years under Stoops that OU has gone to a postseason bowl.
23 – Oklahoma women’s basketball won 23 games in 2016-17, the 15th time under head coach Sherri Coale that the Sooners have won 20 or more games in a season. They also made their 18th consecutive NCAA Tournament appearance.
76 – Consecutive wins without a defeat by Sooner men’s gymnastics over the past three years.
198.3875 – Winning score this year by the national champion OU women’s gymnastics squad, the highest score in NCAA women’s championship history in the sport.