When you win 13 conference championships in 24 seasons, including the last five is succession, like the Oklahoma football team has done, you don’t lose many games.
Since the Big 12 was formed in 1996, the Sooners have a Big 12-best overall record of 238-76, a winning percentage of .758. Oklahoma also leads all Big 12 teams with 153 conference wins and just 48 losses in 24 seasons.
Most of those wins have come while Bob Stoops was head coach of the Sooners. Stoops won 190 of OU’s 238 Big 12 wins and 121 of the team’s 153 conference wins. That’s a winning percentage of .807 in conference games and .798 overall.
In the 24 years the Big 12 has been in operation, only football coach in the conference who has coached at least five games against the Sooners has a winning record against Oklahoma. R.C. Slocum O Texas A&M posted a 4-3 record against Oklahoma while the Aggies were members of the Big 12. Against Stoops’ Sooner teams, however, Slocum was just 1-3.
All of this got us thinking which active Big 12 head coach has done the best against the Sooners.
Only two current head coaches, Mike Gundy of Oklahoma State and Gary Patterson of TCU, have coached as many as 10 Big 12 games against Oklahoma, and both have just two wins over the Sooners.
Gundy is just 2-13 versus the Sooners as the head coach. He also played against OU in the late 1980s and was an assistant coach at his alma mater for five seasons (1991-95). As a quarterback at Oklahoma State, Gundy’s Cowboys never defeated Oklahoma, going 0-4. As an Oklahoma State assistant coach, the Pokes were 1-4-1 against OU.
TCU did not become a member of the Big 12 until the 2012 season, but the Horned Frogs’ head coach, Gary Patterson, brought his team to Norman twice before joining the conference. The Sooners and Horned Frogs split those two games, with TCU winning in 2005 and Oklahoma evening the score three years later.
Oklahoma has not been a good matchup for Big 12 head coaches.
As members of the Big 12, Patterson’s team has had little success against the Sooners. Oklahoma is 8-1 against TCU since the Frogs came into the Big 12. They are 0-4 against Lincoln Riley.
Only one other current Big 12 coach has won as many as two games against OU. Kansas head coach Les Miles has beaten the Sooners twice in Big 12 play, but that was in the early 2000s when he was the coach at Oklahoma State. Miles won his first two games over Oklahoma, but also lost twice in a four-year stint at OSU before becoming head coach at LSU. He lost to the Sooners last season in his first season at Kansas.
Other than Slocum’s winning record against the Sooners, perhaps the coach with the most success against Oklahoma, at least in the Big 12 era, is Mack Brown when he was at Texas. Brown, who at one time was an OU assistant coach (he was the Sooners’ offensive coordinator in 1984), was 7-9 against Oklahoma in the annual Red River Showdown.
Bill Snyder, the legendary head coach at Kansas State, coached the most games against Oklahoma — 23 in all, 16 as a member of the Big 12. Snyder coached the Cats at two different times as a Big 12 school (1996 to 2005 and 2009-2018). His record against the Sooners in the Big 12 was 5-11. He was 4-3 versus OU while both schools were in the Big Eight Conference.
Ironically, the head coach that has had the greatest success against the Oklahoma Sooners was one of their own. Darrell Royal was a quarterback and defensive back at Oklahoma from 1946-49 and was 16-1 as a part-time quarterback starter. His 18 career interceptions as a defensive back still stands as a school record.
From 1957-1976, however, Royal was the head coach of Oklahoma’s biggest rival, the Texas Longhorns. He also served as that school’s athletic director for 18 years.
Royal won 12 of 25 games at Texas against his alma mater, lost seven times and one game ended in a tie.