Old St. Nick, just one or two or many things, like getting OU some big-time defensive linemen, and keeping Ollie Gordon at OSU, and a deep playoff run for the Thunder, ...
Santa Claus has been a hero of mine since Christmas 1974 when he brought me an Electric Football game.
You plugged it in and little plastic football players vibrated all over a metal playing field. One of them had a tiny little ball stuck to him. When he got touched by an opposing plastic player, you unplugged the game and repositioned all the plastic guys.
It didn’t matter that Electric Football was also Sort Of Senseless Football with zero strategy. What was great was you got to paint one little plastic team in the Miami Dolphins’ teal and the other in the Minnesota Vikings’ purple. The Super Bowl teams at the time.
They had numbers you could stick on the plastic players after painting. That’s how Bob Griese and Fran Tarkenton were bouncing around your living room Christmas morning. Mercury Morris and Chuck Foreman, too.
The “stadium” was a fold-out piece of cardboard you tucked in behind the field. You kept score by rolling a wheel of numbers. Nothing NFL about that. Not that it mattered. Or matters.
It’s still the best present Santa ever put under my tree.
In that spirit of the season, here’s hoping Santa comes through for some of our favorite sports figures.
Here’s hoping he brings Brent Venables a couple of defensive linemen that look and play like Texas’ T’Vondre Sweat and Byron Murphy.
Here’s hoping Santa brings Mike Gundy one more season of Ollie Gordon.
Let’s hope he brings Gordon 15 carries in the first quarter of OSU’s 2024 season opener against South Dakota State.
Let’s hope he brings Jackson Arnold 15 completions in the first quarter of OU’s ’24 season opener against Temple.
Santa should bring OU fans a home-and-home with USC in 2027-28 after the Sooners finish with Michigan in 2025-26. That helps make up for the ’24 Owen Field nonconference schedule of Temple, Tulane, Houston and Maine.
Santa should bring OSU fans a lopsided victory over Arkansas next Sept. 7. That way, he brings back the “S!-E!-C!” chant to Boone Pickens Stadium. That way, Cowboy fans can still taunt their Bedlam friends, if secondhand.
Santa should bring OU president Joe Harroz and OSU president Kayse Shrum the direct lines to their peers at Washington, Washington State, Oregon and Oregon State, all of whom put money, politics and that other realignment garbage aside recently and decided to keep playing Apple Cups and Civil Wars.
Let’s count on Santa bringing the players at Tulsa and Oklahoma City public schools the courage to press their fight.
Let’s count on him bringing the coaches and players in Class 6A-1 football programs outside Bixby the courage to press theirs.
Let’s hope Santa brings Shai Gilgeous-Alexander whatever he needs to feel comfy the next five years and whatever Chet Holmgren needs to stay healthy the next five months.
Let’s hope he brings Thunder fans a deep playoff run and some deeper sense over complicated issues like a $900 million arena vote.
Let’s hope he brings all fans a deeper sense over complicated issues so that fandom doesn’t devolve any further into social media flexing.
It would be nice if Santa brought Javion McCollum a spot on the All-Big 12 Basketball First Team, and McCollum’s Sooners some staying power to challenge Kansas and Houston.
It would be nice if he brought OSU a winning Big 12 season and then a surprisingly deep Big 12 Tournament run. That way the good man coaching the Cowboys could keep doing so.
It would be sweet if Santa brought the OU softball team black capes to wear at games this spring, allowing the Sooners to mock the “too good for their sport” silliness that cheapens their brilliance.
It would be sweet if Santa brought the OSU softball team two wins in the regular season-ending series in Norman, allowing the Cowgirls to spice up Bedlam’s hottest sport while bringing some wild intrigue to the softball postseason.
Finally, not to be selfish, but if Santa could please leave one more thing under my tree. It doesn’t have to be as cool as Electric Football or that year in high school he brought me home and away Wayne Gretzky Edmonton Oiler jerseys.
My daughter, Gretchen, is marrying Logan next summer in Tulsa. It’s outdoors.
Santa, my man … Would it be possible to make it 72 degrees with a light breeze July 13? Maybe a rainbow arched over the skyline?
If that’s pushing my luck, how about one more game of Electric Football so I can paint little plastic players Chiefs red, Eagles green and have Patrick Mahomes and Jalen Hurts bouncing around the living room.