POSTED ON SEPTEMBER 7, 2011:
Can the Hurricane blow through Norman?
This is it. Hang on tight for the next several months. College football season is underway and the National Football League commences this weekend in full force.
Let's take this opportunity to catch-up on a few items. Some pigskin related and some not-so-much.
Congratulations to Sam Bradford. The St. Louis Rams quarterback is permanently honored at his alma mater. A 10-foot statue atop a three-foot base weighing 1,200 pounds will ensure he is never forgotten by Sooner faithful.
"I am flattered to be honored this way and humbled to be mentioned with people like Billy Vessels, Steve Owens, Billy Sims and Jason White," said Bradford in a statement.
"My family and I had the opportunity to review the statue during its development and we're pleased with the final product. I look forward to a time when I can get back to Oklahoma and celebrate the OU tradition with Sooner fans."
This is a valuable lesson to young, aspiring football players. If you work hard, bring notoriety to your school and win a lot of games...big deal.
But if you do those things and also play running back or quarterback, you might have a statue erected one day!
The University of Tulsa remains the smallest school in the Football Bowl Subdivision (D1). The numbers are based off 2010 totals. TU's overall enrollment was 4,194 and the next team on the list? C-USA foe Rice University with 5,760.
Maybe the person scheduling the Golden Hurricane's football opponents can take this into consideration instead of stuffing three top-10 teams into the first four weeks of the season. It is an uphill battle when the road student section is larger than your total enrollment.
"I got recruited by them a little bit," said Damaris Johnson back in 2009 about the LSU Tigers. "I got a good chance to play for the University of Tulsa and this is working out really good for me."
How things have changed two years later. For starters, his off-the-field troubles seem to fit in with LSU more so than TU. He is indefinitely suspended from the team pending investigation of felony charges. This serves as another valuable lesson to student-athletes: don't date in college.
The NBA lockout is in full effect. Chances for a full season are slim. A post-Christmas start date seems likely. However, the Tulsa 66ers released a full schedule of games.
"We are pleased that 16 out of our 24 home games will be played on weekends at the Tulsa Convention Center," 66ers' president Jim Brylewski said. "This season we will continue to enhance the overall family experience for our fans at affordable prices."
"The entire Tulsa organization is excited to continue the success of the previous two seasons," third year 66ers' head coach Nate Tibbetts said. "The Oklahoma City Thunder does a great job of providing us the resources to succeed and help our players grow on and off the court every single day."
It is funny how perception can change. Prior to our WNBA experience, we thought the 66ers were a scrambled mess with abysmal attendance. Now they are a shining beacon.
USWNT! The U.S. women's national soccer team brought pride and excitement to the nation during their World Cup run. Stars were born. It also restarted the conversation about whether or not soccer can work in America. Will we buy into the sport?
Why not start on the local scene. The Golden Hurricane men's and women's teams are solid. The men's squad routinely earns a berth in post-season play. Hurricane Stadium hosts SMU, Oakland and UCONN on Sept. 9 and 11 in men's action.
Just for kicks, check it out. If not, join me watching Dancing with the Stars as U.S. superstar goalie Hope Solo dances her way into more American hearts.
The Jenks-Union game takes place at H.A. Chapman Stadium again this year on Friday, Sept. 9 at 7:05pm. The game always means something and is typically entertaining.
The positive note for TU is this will not be the most fans to buy a ticket for a game at Skelly Field this year. Oklahoma State is coming to town on Sept. 17. Buy your mini-pack today!
Speaking of 1,700 miniature horses. What's that, no one mentioned 1,700 miniature horses? Oh contraire.
Apparently there is a large (1,700 qualifies as large, even though they are mini) horse show at the Tulsa Fairgrounds Sept. 8-18.
It is the 2011 American Miniature Horse Registry National Championship. Here are a few events they will be competing in: Driving, obstacle, halter, jumping, costume, liberty and even chariot races.
Now if they really want to increase attendance I have a surefire, foolproof plan that could launch this event into must-attend status.
A monkey, squirrel or Irwin the kangaroo riding the miniature horses in a race. Or just tape a pointy-cone to the top of the horses' heads and call them miniature unicorns. Or both!
Tulsa and Oral Roberts agreed to a six-game, home-and-home series in men's basketball. Unfortunately, one of those games is not this year.
"We had some miscommunication and we were each holding a different set of dates for the game," said Tulsa Athletics Director Bubba Cunningham on why there is no Mayor's Cup game this year. "Most of our other home-and-home series dates are established at the signing of the contract. We're doing the same for the Tulsa-ORU series. We are pleased that we now have dates contracted for the next six years."
Question: Would you be more likely to attend a TU/ORU basketball game if they played in the BOK Center?
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