January 1, 2005 |
A year ago today, USC clinched a share of the national championship with a receiving corps that featured the Trojans' all-time receptions leader and another player on pace to smash nearly every school record. Keary Colbert moved on to the NFL after catching two touchdown passes in the Trojans' Rose Bowl victory over Michigan.
December 30, 2004 |
The kid was big and fast and talented. And that was part of his problem. At various times in high school, Dan Cody played free safety and defensive end. Fullback and tight end. He was quarterback too. So no one knew quite what to do with him, least of all college recruiters. Only a few came calling. "I felt like I had the ability to play," he says. "I just didn't know where it was going to be." The short answer: Oklahoma.
December 29, 2004 |
Last week, Oklahoma defensive end Larry Birdine provided some early bulletin-board fodder, saying that USC quarterback Matt Leinart was "overrated" and should not have won the Heisman Trophy. What did his teammates think of that comment? "I laughed," said Jonathan Jackson, who plays along the defensive line with Birdine. "If anybody knows Larry Birdine, that's the type of guy he is.... He's going to say the first thing that comes to mind." With both teams in Miami on Tuesday, and the Jan.
December 28, 2004 |
The Oklahoma Sooners arrived Monday afternoon, stepping off the plane to music, dancers, an orange carpet and Orange Bowl executives bearing gifts. Lest they forget the reason for their visit, Coach Bob Stoops had his players in pads and helmets at a nearby college a few hours later. "We're here to enjoy Miami and everything the bowl has to offer The evening practice, held amid cool temperatures and blustery skies, lasted only an hour or so, ending with conditioning drills.
December 27, 2004 |
USC's Orange Bowl game against Oklahoma marks the end of at least one era for the Trojans. Senior nose tackle Mike Patterson will play his last college game for USC before heading to the NFL. Fiery defensive line coach Ed Orgeron, who recruited Patterson and molded him, sometimes mercilessly, into an All-American, is leaving immediately after the Jan. 4 bowl championship series title game to become head coach at Mississippi.
December 26, 2004 |
Congratulations to the Orange Bowl for giving berths to twins. No. 1 USC versus No. 2 Oklahoma for the national title Jan. 4 appears to be as evenly matched as Tiki versus Ronde Barber. First-year Arizona Coach Mike Stoops, who coached at Oklahoma for five years and coached against USC on Nov. 13, probably knows as much as anyone about both programs -- and even he can't tell them apart. "This game is as good a matchup you can find with teams that mirror each other in a lot of ways," Stoops said.
December 19, 2004 |
Just beyond the stately brick buildings and the graceful elm trees at the University of Oklahoma, the boys were draining a bottle of liquor called "Hot Damn" -- and more. At the Sigma Chi fraternity house, the night wasn't much different than many others, until Blake Hammontree died. Hammontree, 19, was found the morning of Sept. 30 with a blood-alcohol level of 0.42, suggesting, investigators said, that he had consumed more than 15 shots within two hours.
December 8, 2004 |
The telephone rings, and a recorded voice at the other end of the line says this call is coming from a federal prison. Do you wish to accept? Adrian Peterson, perhaps the best running back in college football, a 19-year-old prodigy at Oklahoma, knows it is his father calling. "We talk once a week," he says. They usually discuss last Saturday's game. Peterson asks for advice, and his dad, Nelson, is blunt.
December 2, 2004 |
Drinking will be banned at University of Oklahoma fraternities and residence halls under a policy announced in Norman, two months after a 19-year-old student died of alcohol poisoning. University of Oklahoma President David Boren said the rules would go into effect Jan. 18 at the start of the new semester. Three violations will end in a student's suspension for a semester.