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Bob Stoops’ return to OU’s sideline became a special night for fans, but also a meaningful opportunity for the coach. Not only was Stoops returning to coach Oklahoma since retiring in 2017 after a storied tenure, but he was also overseeing a team featuring his son and receiver Drake Stoops.
Up 9-3 in the second quarter, Oklahoma’s offense decided to feature the Drake on a red zone play, which resulted in a six-yard score to Stoops.
Ensuing chants for STOOOOPS conveyed a nod to both the player on the field and the father on the sideline, going up 16-9 en route to a 47-32 win by the No. 16 Sooners at the Valero Alamo Bowl. The No. 14 Oregon Ducks weren’t as thrilled by the familial moment.
According to coach Stoops, co-offensive coordinator Cale Gundy wasn’t planning on featuring the play until they opted to take advantage of a Ducks blitz.
As relayed by The Oklahoman, Stoops sounded grateful for the memorable touchdown. “It was cool. We saw (Oregon) was going to come after (Williams), and Coach (Cale) Gundy said, ‘Drake has got to run a great route and win it.’ As soon as they snapped the ball, Caleb looked that way and threw a great ball. Drake ran a great route and it was a touchdown.”
The reception was Drakes’ only catch on the night, still left as thrilled by the moment as his dad.
“It was awesome,” Drake commented. “It’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Getting to play one game under my dad in my career is definitely something I’ll remember forever.”
Bob Stoops’ bowl victory will function as the link between former coach Lincoln Riley’s term to incoming head coaching hire Brent Venables, who led Clemson’s defense since 2012.
Follow along on Twitter: @AlejandroAveela