Patty Gasso: 'We're good, but we're not good right now'


With 10 games remaining in the 2024 regular season, Patty Gasso's three-time defending national champion Oklahoma Sooners have hit an atypical rough patch in their road to the postseason.

Let's face it, losing has not been part of Oklahoma's makeup for quite a while. In the last four seasons (including this one), the Sooners have lost just 12 games total to go along with an incredible .947 winning percentage and an equally phenomenal overall record of 214-12.

The Sooners have not lost more than four games in a season (regular season plus postseason) since 2019, when they went 57-6. The year before that, OU finished with a record of 57-5. So it's pretty clear that Oklahoma softball losses are few and far between.

That's the backdrop for why eyebrows are starting to be raised on why, all of a sudden, the machine that is OU softball has come up on the short end in three of its last six games after going 32-1 in the first 33 games this season.

"Where's there's smoke, there's fire," as the time-worn expression goes. And the smoke signals from the Sooners' current losing skid -- it's hard to believe anyone would call three losses in twice as many games a losing streak -- are beginning to cast growing doubts on OU's chances of going this season where no other Division I softball team has ever gone: winning a fourth consecutive national championship.

The bottom line is, Oklahoma is going to have to step up its game and play better and more consistently that it has the past week or so if it expects to make it back to Oklahoma City and the Women's College World Series for the eighth consecutive year and 12th in the last 13 seasons.

Head coach Patty Gasso knows the Sooners aren't firing on all cylinders right now, But she also knows her team has the ingredients to get it all back together, not that they every really lost it.

"What I'm learning is we're not tough enough," the OU coach of the past 30 years said after the Sooners' somewhat shocking 9-4 loss at home to BYU last Friday. "We're just not tough enough right now. We're good, but we're not good enough right now, either.

"We just don't have the ingredients to win it all right now. That's being flat-out honest," she said.

When you win 71 games in a row -- which OU did last season into this one in setting an NCAA record -- you tend to overlook how hard it is to win every time out. The Sooner players who have been here the past couple of years know what to takes to be a championship-level team and what it looks like. Conversely, they know their overall performance over the past week and a half isn't it.

"The good news is, we know what it feels like. We've been there, and we know how to get there."

-Β Sooner head coach Patty Gasso

The reboot started on Sunday with a 7-3 win to capture the series win (OU's 57th in its last 58 Big 12 series), and hopefully the reigning national champions continue to build on that this week with a midweek contest against Tulsa in Oklahoma City on Tuesday, the Sooners' final nonconference game of the year, and three games back at Love's field this weekend against Houston.

The folks who cast votes for the weekly national rankings haven't yet lost faith in the Sooners' ability to go far into the postseason. Despite losing three of the last six games, Oklahoma has dropped just one spot, from No. 1 to No. 2, in the rankings