Oklahoma, which won the 1976 national title game, and Michigan will play a two-game series in 2025 and 2026, with the Sooners playing host to the first game and the Wolverines welcoming the Sooners to Ann Arbor in 2026.
"Over a span of many, many years, we have emphasized the importance of a strength-of-schedule strategy,” said OU Vice President for Intercollegiate Athletics and Director of Athletics Joe Castiglione in a press release by the school. “The new College Football Playoff format underscores that philosophy, as well. A well-balanced schedule creates the proper challenges for our program and prepares us in our pursuit of championships."
After a home-and-home with Tennessee starting this year, the Sooners will do the same with Ohio State (2016-2017), UCLA (2018-2019), Nebraska (2021-2022) and LSU. The year is yet to be determined when it comes to the Tigers.
While the series against a team with equal national recognition is important, it must be noted that these games are still more than a decade away. Redshirt seniors on either side once this game is played are about 12 years old right now.
Still, it is an important step forward for both schools as major universities around the country eye tougher schedules, hoping for stronger resumes for the new four-team playoff.
"We remain committed to playing games that celebrate the history and excitement of college football,” Castiglione said. “We're grateful for head coach Bob Stoops, who shares that commitment. Oklahoma and Michigan represent two of the most iconic names in American sport and we look forward to a series that will be marked by mutual respect and admiration. We also know how truly special these opportunities are for student-athletes, as well as our fans and college football fans everywhere.”
Oklahoma and Michigan are two of the top programs in the nation, historically. They have a combined 10 national championships – seven for the Sooners. They also have a combined eight Heisman Trophy winners – five from Oklahoma.
The home-and-home will be another first for Oklahoma. It will be the first time the Sooners have ever played host to a team from Michigan and the first time Oklahoma has ever played in the state of Michigan.