Now, something else for Oklahoma fans to sweat: Bob Stoops going to the Denver Broncos. This in addition to speculation that quarterback Sam Bradford will opt early for the same league.
My gut tells me, however, both will be on the sidelines when the Sooners open spring training.
I've already detailed the reasons why I think Bradford is around for at least one more season. And some of those around the OU program think he may stick for a fourth.
There are at least as many reasons why I believe Stoops does not jump to the NFL, though the Rocky Mountain News reported Friday that the Broncos were, "making overtures to [Stoops'] representatives."
OK. Bob has a Cleveland-based agent as I recall, though he doesn't usually talk to the media on such matters and neither does his client. The same paper reported Denver has lined up three interviews with current NFL assistants, which, given the historical lack of success college coaches have had on Sunday recently, is much more likely the direction any NFL team goes these days.
In the last conversation I had with Stoops during last season about this kind of thing, he told me he might be interested in the NFL "some day," but again pointed out how happy he was raising his young family in Norman (where he's planning a new house) and working in a stable situation for AD Joe Castiglione and president David Boren. I could be wrong, but Bob doesn't strike me as the kind who would "interview" for any other position anywhere. Call and say, "Bob, the job is yours if you want it." That's one thing. Call and ask him if he wants to audition, and that's probably the last time you're going to discuss the situation.
And do you actually think that Bob Stoops would take a job and not know who he's going to be working for? That would be the situation of Broncos owner Pat Bowlen goes through with his plan to hire a coach before he hires a general manager.
Yeah, Bowlen is an OU graduate. But he's not what you'd call an OU booster and as I understand it, he and Stoops have only a passing acquaintance, though Stoops and staff visited the Broncos camp during the off-season.
Of course money isn't a concern. Stoops received a $3 million bonus on New Year's Day for completing his 10th season as OU's coach. He doesn't strike me as a take-the-money-and-run kind of guy. With incentives, he'll make more than $6 million this season, which would include an extra $100,000 if the Sooners knock off Florida next week in the BCS championship game. He's got a contract in place that runs through 2013.
Ego? Again, Stoops, if anything, is a man confident of his own worth who doesn't need an NFL entry on his resume to quantify his career.
So I don't know. These are my thoughts.
You tell me why he WOULD make this move.
-- Mike Jones