OU president Joe Harroz and what the SEC move prevented

Also on the Berry Tramel Show, Harroz tells Berry how the gameplan for hiring Lincoln Riley’s replacement changed after meeting Brent Venables.

By Published On: September 15, 2023

OU president Joe Harroz joins me for episode 2 of the Berry Tramel Show. Harroz took over as OU president in 2019 and has teamed with athletic director Joe Castigilone to lead the Sooners through two tumultuous events – the loss of football coach Lincoln Riley to Southern Cal, leading to the hiring of Brent Venables, and OU’s decision to join the Southeastern Conference, effective summer 2024. Harroz talks about the surprise of losing Riley and the recruiting process to hire Venables – including Harroz admittedly getting so captivated by Venables that the gameplan was scrapped at Venables’ South Carolina lake home. He also talks about the reasons for joining the SEC, particularly the desire to avoid student fees to maintain OU’s athletic standards. 

Host: Berry Tramel

Producer: Jacquelyn Musgrove

Creative director: Michael Lane

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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].

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