In his first year at Oklahoma, he visited his aunt and uncle in Edmond for Thanksgiving. The family went around the table to say why they hated Oklahoma State, which might still be something for which they are thankful.
“I’ve been taught for a long time to hate those guys,” Darlington said. “At the same time, I know a lot of those guys up there. We’ve developed friendships with some of their guys. It’s going to be feisty.”
Darlington grew up far away from the rivalry in central Florida just outside of Orlando, but his parents went to Oklahoma.
“It's going to be crazy. It's going to be emotional. It's a big-time rival,” Darlington said. “I grew up getting taught to hate Oklahoma State, getting taught to hate their guts.”
Oklahoma safety Steven Parker isn’t exactly the same way. He was raised on the Cowboys – his father played at Oklahoma State and his mother attended.
The only time he’s won his father over was on National Signing Day, when his dad wore and Oklahoma sweatshirt to support his son. Parker is pretty sure his dad threw the sweatshirt away soon after.
“There are mixed feelings in my house,” Parker said. “ ... It’s a little different. (My dad) has to learn to like OU. The only reason why is his kid is here. I can’t really say that growing up it was the greatest thing just because my family talked so bad about OU.”