After 42 seasons, Oklahoma assistant coach Bobby Jack Wright is ready to retire. Wright announced his official retirement Tuesday morning in an OU press release. The news was first reported Monday evening by NewsOK.com.
Wright has spent the last 16 seasons with the Sooners in a number of roles. During his time at OU, Wright was the recruiting coordinator, special teams coach, defensive ends coach and finished by coaching the cornerbacks the last three seasons.
“Bobby Jack Wright was simply invaluable to me and our Oklahoma coaching staff for 16 seasons,” said OU coach Bob Stoops in a press release. “We wouldn’t have been able to win a national championship and eight Big 12 conference championships without his dedication, loyalty and commitment.
“He was the first assistant coach at OU with me within a day of me being hired.”
With Wright retiring, and then there was one. Cale Gundy is now the only OU assistant left who has been with Stoops for all 16 seasons in Norman.
Wright began his coaching career as Texas high school football coach before serving as an assistant at Texas A&I, North Texas State and spent 12 years as an assistant at Texas.
“It’s truly been an honor and a privilege to coach at the University of Oklahoma the past 16 seasons,” Wright said. “I’ve worked for a fabulous man and a great friend in Bob Stoops, who has been wonderful to me and my family in so many ways. It’s truly been a blessing to compete alongside so many talented student-athletes and coaches at Oklahoma.
“Our family would like to express our most sincere thanks to President Boren, Joe Castiglione and everyone at the University of Oklahoma, as well as our many friends and great fans across the country who have supported us and our teams over the years. Our three daughters all graduated from OU, so there is no doubt that the Wright family will remain Sooners to our core. We’ll continue to represent the University of Oklahoma with great pride and passion.”
Wright was a jack-of-all-trades for the Sooners, ready and willing to do whatever was asked of him at the current time. His biggest contribution was on the recruiting trail. Wright helped OU become an even bigger player in the state of Texas, especially in the San Antonio area where almost every high school coach knows who Wright is and what he’s all about.
“I will always appreciate the way he positively impacted so many individuals who have been a part of Oklahoma football, including myself,” Stoops said. “We all owe a debt of gratitude to him as a mentor who made me and the other members of our staff better.
“I can’t thank him enough for the role he played in shaping the lives of so many young men who came through our program. To his core, he defined what it means to be a football coach in so many ways.”
Wright coached in 21 bowl games with the last 16 of those happening at OU. Wright is just one of several OU coaching changes happening after a disappointing 8-5 season.
No replacement for Wright has been named as of this time. Graduate assistant Courtney Viney is no doubt a candidate because of his cornerback experience and because of how successful and determined he has been on the recruiting trail.