NORMAN, Okla. — Bob Stoops doesn’t want to talk about it.
Nonetheless the veteran Sooners coach can become the program’s winningest coach on Saturday if Oklahoma defeats Kansas State in Manhattan, Kan. A win would move Stoops to 158 career victories, passing legendary coach Barry Switzer. OU’s 48-10 win over Iowa State last Saturday tied Stoops with Switzer at 157 career wins.
Stoops' chance to make history in Manhattan is a interesting twist, considering K-State coach Bill Snyder has been one of the influential coaches during Stoops’ career.
Asked if it would be special to reach the milestone against Snyder, Stoops turned his focus to this season's team and finishing strong.
“No,” he said. “Not in those terms. Definitely winning there would be great for our season and this season for all of those reasons. Outside of that, Coach Snyder and I aren’t going to play. We have got teams and staff and a bunch of people working with us and it will be one team against the other.”
Mike Stoops, his brother and OU defensive coordinator, was more willing to put into words the impact Bob Stoops has had on the program and what the milestone means in terms of Stoops' excellence during his coaching career.
“The thing about Bob is consistency,” said Mike Stoops, who left Norman to be the coach of Arizona before returning to OU last season. “He’s the same person as when I was here the first time as he was the second time when I came back. He’s a good guy to play for and a great guy to work for. He lets you do your job and he expects you to do it the right way.”
Bob Stoops has led the Sooners to a BCS national championship in 2000, four BCS title game appearances, eight BCS bowl appearances and eight Big 12 championships. OU has won at least 10 games in 11 of 14 seasons during his tenure.
“I’m sure he’ll take a lot of pride in it,” Mike Stoops said. “But he’s much more concerned about Kansas State than he is about a record. I think he’s probably just thankful to be here and to coach all these great players. That’s a pretty special achievement. That’s what you’re expected to do at Oklahoma.”
But the pupil beating the teacher aspect of the Sooners game against Snyder and the Wildcats adds plenty of intrigue.
“He has kind of started us all in coaching,” Mike Stoops said. “Coach Snyder’s given us a great opportunity. We owe a great deal to him professionally. He taught us a lot of important elements of coaching and the details of it all. He’s been a mentor in a lot of ways to us. It would be somewhat nostalgic to do it there but again we’re not really into all that.”