Bob Stoops isn’t gun shy after his battles with SEC fans, media and bloggers over the summer. Stoops made comments last summer about the overall strength of the Southeastern Conference during an OU Caravan stop in Tulsa after being asked how anyone could stop their national championship dominance over the last seven seasons.
“You’re listening to a lot of propaganda that gets fed out to you,” Stoops said then. “You can look at the top two, three, four, five, six teams, and you can look at the bottom six, seven, eight, whatever they are. How well are they all doing?”
Stoops’ comments went viral and were plastered throughout the country.
Apparently Stoops' felt the need to throw some gasoline back on that fire following a 35-21 win over Notre Dame in South Bend last weekend.
Stoops was asked following Wednesday evening's practice about the overall strength of the Big 12 Conference.
Stoops seemed to take the question in a completely different direction to get in a jab at the SEC.
“A few years ago we had all the quarterbacks and now all of a sudden we can play a little better defense and some other people can’t play defense,” said Stoops. “Funny how people can’t play defense when there’s pro-style quarterbacks over there.”
Why is that so interesting?
Stoops’ comments over the summer were directly defending his league and program against the perception that the SEC as a conference was dominating college football.
As a coach and a recruiter, Stoops didn’t want to let that slide. So he pointed out the lower half of the conference.
Wednesday evening, Stoops wasn’t even asked about the SEC. He was asked about his own conference. But he was more than happy to drive the train off the tracks.
And park the SEC bus right in front of it.
When reminded Georgia and LSU had two of the top ranked NCAA quarterbacks in pass efficiency (Georgia’s Aaron Murray is ranked 4th and LSU’s Zach Mettenberger is ranked 6th) Stoops left no doubt his previous job was meant for the SEC.
“How’s that happening playing all those SEC defenses?” Stoops asked reporters. “I still don’t know how A&M was third in the country in total offense and scoring offense playing all those SEC defenses. I have no idea how that happened.
“Oh, they’ve got a quarterback, that’s right.”
Oklahoma appears to be the favorite in the Big 12 after a big win on the road and Stoops appears to be feeling a little bit more swagger as the head coach at Oklahoma right now.
But with Baylor looking like the only true challenger for a Big 12 Conference title, the question about the strength of the Big 12 is still valid.
“We’re in the fourth game. We’ll see how things go,” said Stoops. “I’m not concerned. All I can do is concern myself with playing well Saturday and then playing well the following Saturday. That’s all I concern myself with.
“But obviously going to Notre Dame, which we’re willing to do, can’t hurt us. I’m just saying. That’s all I’m worried about.”
That’s all Stoops is worried about, except for the perception SEC defenses are head and shoulders better than anyone else.