POSTED ON DECEMBER 2, 2009:
Dreams Deferred and Met
Bedlam in the Bedlam series and a chance encounter with UFC champ Hendo
Dream Date. I once pinned a column about my strange semi-sports related dreams. One dream had me drinking a six-pack with UFC and Pride FC champion Dan Henderson. No beer was involved, but “Hendo” made a guest appearance at Cook’s XFL Final Fury card.
Sometimes dreams do come true. An explanation is forthcoming but first a few postscripts from the weekend behind us.
Bedlam v.102 wrapped up college football's regular season for both programs. It also pointed out obvious flaws with each team this year.
Oklahoma State was vastly overrated with an inflated 9-2 record heading into the showdown. With a possible at-large BCS berth on the line, the Mike Gundy led squad no-showed once again.
Stat checking works better in baseball. However, the box score for OSU was so egregious that we need to examine it one more time.
Again, this is the output for a team facing a multi-million dollar payoff from a BCS game in the face.
Total yards for the Pokes: 109 (62 rushing, 47 passing). Did the loss of Dez Bryant hurt the offensive? Absolutely. However, the Sooners suffered an injury or two this year and managed to put up a respectable 367 yards in the game.
Third down conversions: 0-14. Not a single third down conversion. To make matters worse, the Cowboys lost 27-0 and were 0-0 on fourth down conversions. You just lost to your biggest rival and not once did you attempt a fourth down play. That's the mark of wimpy, no-guts pigskin.
OU on the other hand smacked around the Pokes all afternoon. This begs the question: Where was this intensity all season long?
The offensive line created holes. They gave Landry Jones time to survey the field. Oh, and the defense looked stout, too.
What does this mean? The Oklahoma State Cowboys are likely headed to Dallas for a showdown with Ole Miss or Tennessee in the Cotton Bowl. Nothing is set in stone, but I'll side with cbssports.com and espn.com on this one. It makes a ton of sense.
The Sooners might also head south to Texas. A date with California in the Sun Bowl seems imminent. That would be a solid New Year's Eve tilt.
And then we have the University of Tulsa. The Golden Hurricane finished 5-7 just shy of bowl eligibility. The below average finish makes you wonder how much the city of Tulsa took the past several winning seasons for granted.
Head Coach Todd Graham's record in his three seasons at TU stands at 26-14. His predecessor, Steve Kragthorpe, accrued a 29-22 record from 2003-2006. Why mention Kragthorpe here? He was fired after three atrocious seasons at Louisville.
Let this be a lesson to all current and prospective TU coaches. You might think TU is a stepping-stone, but you better cash your check at your next job because success is fleeting.
Earlier I mentioned dreams can come true. Thanks to the Xtreme Fighting League and Dale Cook, one of mine did this past weekend.
Several months ago, I pinned a column about my strange semi-sports related dreams. One dream had me drinking a six-pack with UFC and Pride FC champion Dan Henderson.
No beer was involved, but "Hendo" made a guest appearance at Cook's XFL Final Fury card. I spoke with Henderson briefly at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino at Catoosa before he flew home to Temecula, Calif. on Saturday.
"It's been excellent," said Henderson regarding his "tweets" from the previous night. "I've been real impressed with the whole staff and service in the hotel."
If you follow him on Twitter or Facebook, the updates are directly from him, not a PR guru.
The T-Town fighters impressed the legend. We are on the same level with mixed martial artists across the nation, he said. A word of advice to those trying to earn a living in his sport: "Keep plugging away, training and getting better," he said. "Make sure you're in with a good camp. That will help with training and getting more opportunities as well."
His most satisfying win to date is over Wanderlei Silva.
However, more fans are interested in thanking him for shutting Michael Bisping's lights off at UFC 100. "It was a pleasure to do it," he said with a sly grin.
No breaking news here despite being asked about his contract status three times a day.
He's enjoying unemployment and has no news to break while in Tulsa. Strikeforce and UFC would be wise to sign him sooner than later. His stock has never been this high.
Now if Cook can fulfill my other dream of meeting Jessica Alba, all will be right in the world. Just don't tell my wife.
A week ago, I told you about a couple of players the Oklahoma Thunder was sending to the Tulsa 66ers. Only one showed up. This is common with these affiliations.
Since the Thunder organization runs the 66ers, expect more of these last minute player movements.
Thunder assignee Center Byron Mullens displayed solid attributes in his debut this past weekend. Double digit scoring and rebounding led the 66ers to a 1-1 split with the Utah Flash.
Another good sign for the 66ers? The day after Thanksgiving, they pulled a respectable 4,159 fans to the Convention Center. Hopefully they can build on this figure.
They hit the road for a three-game stretch. Catch some D-League basketball when they return Dec. 5 against Rio Grande Valley Vipers. Visit tulsa66ers.com for ticket information.
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