Stoops Brothers Meet at Last

When there was talk of OU possibly meeting Pac-10 opponent Arizona, coached by Mike Stoops, in the Sun Bowl last season, OU head coach Bob Stoops said it then.

No part of squaring off against a brother is good.

But this weekend when the 10th ranked Sooners play host to No. 17 Florida State, it's inevitable.

Other brother Mark Stoops is in his first year as the defensive coordinator for the Seminoles and will take on Bob and the Sooners.

Bob maintains the same mindset.

"You don't really want to play your brother," he said. "I've said it a lot."

And there's only one circumstance where it would be desirable, Bob said.

"You want to play your brother in a championship game because not only does someone lose, someone's going to win a championship, too," Bob said. "So that's to me is the only time you're really looking to do it."

As far as positives, one would think knowing a brother's game plan and philosophies would be up there.

But Bob said that's not significant.

"You know, there are not real positives," Bob said. "We all get to study and watch each other's tape. Whether I know a guy or not, you can see what they're doing, you know, but there are structural, you know, similarities of course, him being with Mike, Mike coming from here, that you see. But, you know, a lot of them are common to a lot of teams in structure wise. So, I don't see that that's a big deal."

Still, there are similarities.

"Again, there is a lot of carry over," said OU offensive coordinator Kevin Wilson. "Because of our backgrounds, the pedigree of the Oklahoma background with Coach Stoops, Mike and how that's evolved, there is going to be some things schematically we see every day exactly is what we see Saturday because there are in the structure of the defense probably to some degree a fair amount."

And they've seen if for awhile now.

"We just saw it 29, or not 29, 24 days in preseason practice and 15 in spring," Wilson said. "You know, you kind of see it every day."

No matter if it's good or bad, this matchup will also make history.

It will be the first time any of the Stoops brothers have faced off against each other, as oldest brother Ron Stoops, Jr. is also a coach at Youngstown State, and none of the four have ever been on opposite sidelines.

Mark, the youngest of the four coaches, has spent time at Arizona, Miami, Houston Wyoming, South Florida and Iowa prior to coming to Florida State, while Bob, the second oldest, has coached at Florida, Kansas State, Kent State and Iowa all before accepting the head position at OU.

One of the two will be the first in the family to record a victory over the other.

So who will it be?

The answer to that question will come when the teams square off at 2:30 p.m. Saturday at Oklahoma Memorial Stadium.

Follow me at or

Sooners Illustrated Top Stories