Conference realignment: Who OSU football fans pick as their next rival

Conference realignment: Who OSU football fans pick as their next rival

Berry Tramel's ScissorTales: Five takeaways from Dave Hudson’s annual survey of OSU fans.

Berry Tramel

By Berry Tramel

| Sep 1, 2023, 11:05am CDT

Berry Tramel

By Berry Tramel

Sep 1, 2023, 11:05am CDT

For the past three years, I’ve written a daily blog called Tramel’s ScissorTales, which seemed to be quite popular. 

The ScissorTales format doesn’t really fit into my plan at Sellout Crowd, though much of the content that was in ScissorTales will be presented in Sellout Crowd’s berrytramel.com.

But I liked the branding. Most Oklahomans know the reference — the scissortail flycatcher is the state bird, and the word itself has become iconic, hence Scissortail Park in downtown OKC.

So I didn’t want the ScissorTale reference to die. Heck, I might lobby to name my podcast/webcast Tramel’s ScissorTales. We’ll see on that.

But for now, I’m going to be posting a regular ScissorTales that includes just one item, a list of something relevant to Oklahomans.

And I’m launching the new ScissorTales with my friend Dave Hudson’s annual survey of OSU fans.

Hudson has been compiling a survey since 2009, gauging the Cowboy faithful on a variety of subjects.

The results are fascinating, providing a pulse on where the OSU fan base stands on a variety of subjects.

You can read Hudson’s survey here

Here are my five biggest takeaways from the survey:

Cowboy fans are not overly optimistic. The survey drew 1,302 fan responses, and their average prediction for OSU wins this season was 7.8. That’s significantly higher than the 6½ Las Vegas over/under number for Cowboy wins, but it’s less than most years. Only in 2014 and 2008, when the average prediction was 7.7, did the fans go under 7.8. And Cowboy fans generally are realistic. Never have they predicted double-digit wins on average — 9.5 in 2011 was the high. That’s the year OSU went 11-1 in the regular season.

Concerning realignment, fans were asked to predict which opponent will become OSU’s chief conference rival, after OU departs for the Southeastern Conference. Fans chose Texas Tech by a rather wide margin, with Kansas State and Baylor a close 2-3, followed by Texas Christian.

I think it’s a good call. Baylor-TCU figures to retain a heated rivalry, and while Tech-TCU has its fire, the Red Raiders could be in search of a more consistent arch foe. Tech, like most teams in Texas (and border states), wanted most to beat the Longhorns.

But here’s a darkhorse — Colorado. The Buffaloes will not have a natural arch-rivalry. Utah will have Brigham Young. The Arizona schools are paired. Same with the Kansas schools. OSU-Colorado could turn into something, provided the Buffaloes get their program going.

OSU fans traditionally have not been realistic in the Cowboys’ chances of playing in the national championship game sometime in the next 10 years. For instance, last year, 42% said yes. That’s an incredibly high number. There are a bunch of bluebloods that couldn’t truthfully go higher than 42%. Penn State, Southern Cal, OU. And in years past, OSU fans have been far too optimistic on that question – 89% in 2012, 85% in 2013, 78% in 2015, 77% in 2016.

Making the national title game is hard. Real hard. Yes, TCU made it last season, and bully for the Horned Frogs. But that was a miracle season that is very difficult to duplicate — by TCU or anyone else outside the exclusive upper tier of college football.

Basketball coach Mike Boynton’s popularity is declining — and fast. Two years ago, Boynton ranked No. 1 among Cowboy fans among head coaches. This year, he ranks dead last, seventh, among the head coaches on the list. 

The lack of NCAA Tournament appearances is starting to wear on OSU fans.

Here’s how fans ranked the coaches: 1. softball’s Kenny Gajewski; 2. women’s basketball’s Jacie Hoyt; 3. Mike Gundy; 4. baseball’s Josh Holliday; 5. wrestling’s John Smith; 6. men’s golf’s Alan Bratton; 7. Boynton.

OSU fans picked receiver Brennan Presley and pass rusher Collin Oliver as their favorite football players for the second straight year. Both Presley and Oliver topped the list in 2022.

Sellout in your inbox

* indicates required

I want these Sellout Crowd email newsletters

Share with your crowd
Berry Tramel is a 45-year veteran of Oklahoma journalism, having spent 13 years at the Norman Transcript and 32 years at The Oklahoman. He has been named Oklahoma Sportswriter of the Year by the National Sports Media Association. Born and raised in Norman, Tramel grew up reading four newspapers a day and began his career at age 17. His first assignment was the Lexington-Elmore City high school football game, and he’s enjoyed the journey ever since, having covered NBA Finals and Rose Bowls and everything in between. Tramel and his wife, Tricia, were married in 1980 and live in Norman near their daughter, son-in-law and three granddaughters. Tramel can be reached at 405-760-8080 or at [email protected].

The latest from Sellout Crowd

  • May 9, 2024; Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA; The Oklahoma City Thunder bench watch the final minute of their game against the Dallas Mavericks during the second half of game two of the second round for the 2024 NBA playoffs at Paycom Center. Mandatory Credit: Alonzo Adams-USA TODAY Sports

    Does OKC need more Aaron Wiggins?

  • May 9, 2024; Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder fans cheer as their team scores against the Dallas Mavericks during the second quarter of game two of the second round for the 2024 NBA playoffs at Paycom Center. Mandatory Credit: Alonzo Adams-USA TODAY Sports

    Thunder-Mavericks: Why these playoffs might spawn a new OKC rival

  • May 9, 2024; Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA; Dallas Mavericks guard Luka Doncic (77) drives to the basket beside Oklahoma City Thunder guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (2) during the second half of game two of the second round for the 2024 NBA playoffs at Paycom Center. Mandatory Credit: Alonzo Adams-USA TODAY Sports

    OKC fans chanted ‘Luka sucks,’ but Doncic’s play said otherwise

  • Tailgating on The Grove on the Ole Miss campus in Oxford, Ms., on Saturday September 15, 2018.

Pre309

    OU’s move to the SEC: Listing the things to look foward to

  • Ireland travelblog: Farewell to the Emerald Isle, which keep Americans coming

The latest from Sellout Crowd

  • May 9, 2024; Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA; The Oklahoma City Thunder bench watch the final minute of their game against the Dallas Mavericks during the second half of game two of the second round for the 2024 NBA playoffs at Paycom Center. Mandatory Credit: Alonzo Adams-USA TODAY Sports

    Does OKC need more Aaron Wiggins?

  • May 9, 2024; Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder fans cheer as their team scores against the Dallas Mavericks during the second quarter of game two of the second round for the 2024 NBA playoffs at Paycom Center. Mandatory Credit: Alonzo Adams-USA TODAY Sports

    Thunder-Mavericks: Why these playoffs might spawn a new OKC rival

  • May 9, 2024; Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA; Dallas Mavericks guard Luka Doncic (77) drives to the basket beside Oklahoma City Thunder guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (2) during the second half of game two of the second round for the 2024 NBA playoffs at Paycom Center. Mandatory Credit: Alonzo Adams-USA TODAY Sports

    OKC fans chanted ‘Luka sucks,’ but Doncic’s play said otherwise

  • Tailgating on The Grove on the Ole Miss campus in Oxford, Ms., on Saturday September 15, 2018.

Pre309

    OU’s move to the SEC: Listing the things to look foward to

  • Ireland travelblog: Farewell to the Emerald Isle, which keep Americans coming