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1978 Oklahoma Sooners football team

1978 Oklahoma Sooners football
Big 8 Co-Champions
Orange Bowl, W 31–24 vs. Nebraska
Conference Big 8 Conference
Ranking
Coaches #3
AP #3
1978 record 11–1 (6–1 Big 8)
Head coach Barry Switzer (6th year)
Offensive coordinator Galen Hall (6th year)
Offensive scheme Wishbone
Defensive coordinator Rex Norris (1st year)
Base defense 5–2
Home stadium Oklahoma Memorial Stadium (Capacity: 71,187)

The 1978 Oklahoma Sooners football team represented the University of Oklahoma in the college football 1978 NCAA Division I-A season. Oklahoma Sooners football participated in the former Big Eight Conference at that time and played its home games in Oklahoma Memorial Stadium where it has played its home games since 1923.[1] The team posted an 11–1 overall record and a 6–1 conference record to earn a share of the conference title under head coach Barry Switzer. This was Switzer's sixth conference title in six seasons since taking the helm in 1973.[2][3][2]

The team was led by All-Americans Billy Sims (who won the Heisman Trophy),[4] Daryl Hunt,[5] Reggie Kinlaw,[6] and Greg Roberts,[7] The Sooners started the season with nine consecutive wins before losing to Nebraska.[3] During the season, OU faced ranked opponents four times (#14 Missouri, #6 Texas, and #4 & #6 Nebraska); four different opponents finished the season ranked. Its only defeat came against Nebraska in their regular season match.[3] The Sooners were able to avenge that loss as an at-large selection to the Orange Bowl against conference co-champions Nebraska, who had claimed the automatic berth by virtue of their victory over OU.[8]

Sims led the nation in scoring with 132 points (based on per game average of 10.9, which includes 120 in 11 games).[9] Sims led the team in rushing with a record-setting 1896 yards, Thomas Lott led the team in passing with 487 yards, Bobby Kimball led the team in receiving with 207 yards, Hunt led the team with 157 tackles and Darrol Ray posted 8 interceptions.[10]

The 5001 yards rushing remain second in Oklahoma football history behind the 1971 team's 5635.[11] The defense set the school's all-time record with 28 interceptions and tied the record of 50 forced turnovers.[12] Daryl Hunt set the school record for career tackles.[13] Billy Sims became the only Sooner to post four 200-yard games in a season.[12] Sims' 1896 yards stood as the Sooner record until Adrian Peterson posted 1925 in 2004.[12]

Billy Sims became the sixth junior to win the Heisman Trophy. Sims was the nation's leading rusher and scorer for 1978. He averaged 160.1 yards and 10.9 points. He set the Big Eight Conference single season rushing record of 1,762 yards on 231 carries for an average of 7.6 yards. Sims was the only back in the nation's top 50 to average 7.0 per carry, and became the first player in Big Eight history to rush for more than 300 yards in three straight games.[14]

Contents

  • Schedule 1
  • Game notes 2
    • Stanford 2.1
    • Texas (Red River Shootout) 2.2
    • Colorado 2.3
  • Awards and honors 3
  • References 4
  • External links 5

Schedule

Date Opponent# Rank# Site TV Result Attendance
September 9 at Stanford* #4 Stanford StadiumStanford, CA W 35–29   58,883[15]
September 16 West Virginia* #3 Oklahoma Memorial Stadium • Norman, OK W 52–10   71,885[15]
September 23 Rice* #3 Oklahoma Memorial Stadium • Norman, OK W 66–7   71,774[15]
September 30 #14 Missouri #1 Oklahoma Memorial Stadium • Norman, OK (Tiger-Sooner Peace Pipe) W 45–23   72,371[15]
October 7 vs. #6 Texas* #1 Cotton BowlDallas, TX (Red River Shootout) ABC W 31–10   72,032[15]
October 14 at Kansas #1 Memorial StadiumLawrence, KS W 17–16   44,450[15]
October 21 at Iowa State #1 Cyclone StadiumAmes, IA W 34–6   49,862[15]
October 28 Kansas State #1 Oklahoma Memorial Stadium • Norman, OK W 56–19   72,105[15]
November 4 at Colorado #1 Folsom FieldBoulder, CO W 28–7   52,506[15]
November 11 at #4 Nebraska #1 Memorial StadiumLincoln, NE (Rivalry) ABC L 14–17   74,657[15]
November 18 Oklahoma State #4 Oklahoma Memorial Stadium • Norman, OK (Bedlam Series) W 62–7   72,339[15]
January 1 vs. #6 Nebraska #4 Miami Orange BowlMiami, FL (Orange Bowl) NBC W 31–24   66,365[15]
*Non-conference game. daggerHomecoming. #Rankings from AP Poll.

Game notes

Stanford

#4 Oklahoma Sooners at Stanford Cardinals
1 2 3 4 Total
#4 Oklahoma 14 14 0 7 35
Stanford 7 3 10 9 29
  • Source: Eugene Register-Guard

Texas (Red River Shootout)

#1 Oklahoma Sooners vs. #6 Texas Longhorns
1 2 3 4 Total
#6 Texas 0 3 7 0 10
#1 Oklahoma 7 10 7 7 31
  • Date: Saturday, October 7
  • Location: Cotton Bowl, Dallas, Texas
  • Game attendance: 72,032
  • Game weather: Sunny
  • Television network: ABC
  • Source: Palm Beach Post

Statistics

  • OU: Billy Sims 25 Rush, 131 Yds (Sims had been injured in two previous meetings)

Colorado

#1 Oklahoma Sooners at Colorado Buffaloes
1 2 3 4 Total
#1 Oklahoma 7 0 14 7 28
Colorado 0 7 0 0 7
[16]

Awards and honors

  • All-American: Billy Sims,[4] Daryl Hunt,[5] Reggie Kinlaw,[6] Greg Roberts,[7]
  • Outland Trophy: Roberts[7]
  • Billy Sims, Associated Press College Player of the Year
  • Billy Sims, Heisman Trophy [17]
  • Billy Sims, Sports Magazine's Player of the Year
  • Billy Sims, United Press College Player of the Year
  • Billy Sims, Walter Camp Foundation's Player of the Year[18]
  • Big 8 rushing champion: Sims[4]
  • NCAA DI scoring champion: Sims[4]
  • NCAA team rushing leaders[7]
  • NCAA team scoring leaders[7]

References

  1. ^
  2. ^ a b
  3. ^ a b c
  4. ^ a b c d
  5. ^ a b
  6. ^ a b
  7. ^ a b c d e
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^
  11. ^
  12. ^ a b c
  13. ^
  14. ^ http://www.heisman.com/winners/b-sims78.html
  15. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l http://www.soonerstats.com/football/seasons/schedule.cfm?seasonid=1978
  16. ^ "Sims Ignites Oklahoma." Palm Beach Post. November 5, 1978.
  17. ^ http://www.heisman.com/winners/hsmn-winners.html
  18. ^ http://football.about.com/cs/history/a/waltercampaward.htm

External links

  • 1978 season at SoonerStats.com
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