Oklahoma football has absolutely dominated the Big 12 for the better part of a decade now, with six conference championships in a row, dating back to Bob Stoops‘ tenure as head coach. They certainly won’t do the same when they join the SEC in the next few years, but legendary Sooners coach Barry Switzer isn’t worried about how the program will contend.
Switzer, who had an incredible 16-year run with the Sooners, joined College Sports on SiriusXM with Mark Packer to discuss OU and Texas’ move. As of now, it is set to take place ahead of the 2025 football season, though it could happen sooner if the Big 12 falls apart. Switzer acknowledges that the week-to-week level of play is going to be much higher, with no “Kansas” to play.
“Every week I’ve said it’s going to be like playing Texas, and Texas has been down some the last several years,” Switzer said. “But Texas has been the powerhouse on our schedule. I know that, we know we’re going to have to have our best every weekend. Everyone’s improved in this league. There’s no Kansas here, I can promise you that, there will be no Kansas for us to play in football.”
“We can compete with them. No one’s competed with Alabama, and that’s the big dog. But we can play with Georgia, we can play with Florida, LSU is down, they had that one big run, but they’ve come back to Earth. We’ll be on the top tier, I promise you that.”
— College Sports on SiriusXM (@SXMCollege) August 3, 2021
OU scored a big win over an SEC power last year, as Switzer mentioned. The Sooners drubbed Florida 55-20 in the Cotton Bowl.
Things haven’t gone as well against the truly elite SEC teams in the College Football Playoff, though, during Stoops and Lincoln Riley‘s tenures. The Sooners fell to Alabama in the 2018 semifinal at the Orange Bowl, 45-34. A year later, they ran into the buzzsaw that was 2019 LSU, losing 63-28 in the semifinal at the Peach Bowl.
The closest that Oklahoma football has come to advancing to the title game was during the 2017 season, when they fell in a double-overtime classic at the Rose Bowl to Georgia, 54-48. They will certainly have the chance to cut their teeth against a slew of top-level opponents on an annual basis when the move happens.