OU football notepad: Lincoln Riley not losing sleep over Big 12 foes

OU head football coach Lincoln Riley answers questions durng the annual Citizen's Advisory Board's Coaches Luncheon, Thursday, July 25, 2019, at Fellowship Church.

NORMAN, Okla. — Lincoln Riley doesn’t encounter many sleepless nights as Oklahoma’s head football coach.

It’s likely easy to sleep with Riley’s two College Football Playoff appearances, back-to-back Heisman Trophy winners and two Big 12 titles in as many seasons in Norman.

A fan asked Riley which Big 12 football program gave him the most sleepless nights during the annual OU coaches luncheon at Fellowship Church on Thursday.

“Every now and then you get asked these questions,” Riley said. “In your mind, you go politically correct or tell the truth.

“So, the truth is none of 'em.”

The crowd erupted in applause for Riley’s confidence.

OU has lost two Big 12 games so far during Riley’s stint — Iowa State in 2017 and Texas in 2018.

The Sooners will go for their fifth-consecutive Big 12 championship this season as the media’s preseason favorite to win the conference.

• Dilly, dilly: OU’s Board of Regents approved the sale of beer at Sooner football home games next season.

Riley fielded a question about Gaylord Family-Oklahoma Memorial Stadium’s latest concession stand item and if he thought it might make the OU crowd a bit more raucous.

“I hope so, let's do it,” Riley said. “Whatever it takes, right? Yeah, that'll be interesting. It's just kind of starting to become the way of the world now.

“And so, hopefully, it livens up a little bit. Hopefully, we do our job on the field to make sure it's live as well.”

• Don’t mess with Brey: A fan asked Riley which of his players he’d least like to fight in a mixed martial arts octagon.

“Probably Brey Walker. He's 6-foot-8, 340 [pounds],” Riley said. “He was a state wrestling champion. So, yeah, I don't like my chances.”

Walker is entering his redshirt freshman season at OU. The former Westmoore star is expected to contend for one of OU's four vacant starting offensive line positions.

• Favorite games: Riley’s short time in Norman has produced a few memorable wins.

The coach was asked which games have been his favorite. Riley picked the Sooners’ 31-24 double-overtime win at Tennessee on Sept. 12, 2015, when he was still OU's offensive coordinator.

His other choice was OU's 31-16 win at Ohio State on Sept. 9, 2017.


Buettner writes for The Norman Transcript, a CNHI News Service publication.

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