Before Kevin Sumlin became a successful head coach at Houston and Texas A&M, he learned plenty during five seasons and two national-championship...
IRVING, Texas — Before Kevin Sumlin became a successful head coach at Houston and Texas A&M, he learned plenty during five seasons and two national-championship game appearances on Bob Stoops’ staff at Oklahoma.
Even before that, they were assistant coaches competing for recruits in the same area.
“Both of us had tough jobs trying to get guys to leave Miami and Fort Lauderdale to go to Manhattan, Kan., and Minneapolis, Minn., or West Lafayette (Ind.),” Sumlin said. “Over the course of time, we have kept in touch and then he hired me. … It was five great years from a learning standpoint.”
The two coaches will be on the opposite sidelines Friday in the Cotton Bowl, a matchup of former Big 12 rivals. Both are 10-2 with five-game winning streaks.
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Stoops and the Sooners this season earned a share of their eighth Big 12 title and would have almost certainly been in a Bowl Championship Series game if not for BCS-busting Northern Illinois. With Heisman Trophy-winning freshman quarterback Johnny Manziel, Sumlin and the Aggies won 10 games in the coach’s first season and their first year in the SEC.
Agent: O’Brien staying at Penn St.
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. — Bill O’Brien’s agent, Joseph Linta, said Thursday the Nittany Lions coach garnered interest from several NFL teams for vacant jobs at the next level.
But Linta said the “heartstrings” of O’Brien’s experience from Penn State’s 8-4 season in his first year outweighed the potentially big raise he could have received as an NFL head coach. Linta said O’Brien made the decision to stay at Penn State.
• Colorado coach Mike MacIntyre brought in a few familiar assistant coaches from San Jose State, hiring Kent Baer to run the defense and Brian Lindgren to direct the offense. Six of MacIntyre’s former coaches will join him in Boulder.
• Virginia coach Mike London hired former Boston College and North Carolina State head coach Tom O’Brien to be his associate head coach for offense and coach tight ends.
• Florida International hired former Illinois coach Ron Turner to take over its program.
• Michigan State running back Le’Veon Bell is headed to the NFL draft after a tireless junior season in which he carried the ball 382 times, amassing 1,793 yards.
• Florida State will lose junior defensive end Bjoern Werner to the NFL but will have junior safety Lamarcus Joyner back for one more year.
• Detroit Lions coach Jim Schwartz and his assistants will direct the South squad in the Senior Bowl, and Oakland Raiders coach Dennis Allen and his staff will run the North team.
• South Carolina quarterback Connor Shaw will have surgery on his left foot Friday.