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Mike Stoops has been mentioned as a possible candidate for potential job openings at several schools over the past week. But for now, OU's Co-Defensive Coordinator is only worried about helping Oklahoma win another championship.

As the Sooners get ready to head to College Station for what promises to be a battle of survival against Texas A&M, OU Co-Defensive Coordinator Mike Stoops still hasn't heard from anybody at Michigan State and doesn't give the impression he wants to hear from anybody.

"Let me tell you something that you already know about me and that is that I am not sitting around on my hands hoping and praying that some other program calls me about a head coach job," said Stoops Thursday. "I am totally focused on the job that I have to do here and I am not worried about any other job or potential job. I don't worry about what is printed in the newspaper or what is on Internet boards or if my name is being mentioned on the radio for other jobs, because in reality I know that I am totally concentrating on doing my job for the University of Oklahoma. I get paid a lot of money to do my job here. My fellow coaches are counting upon me and my players are counting on me to do my job. It wouldn't be fair to them for me to be talking to other schools about jobs when I have so much at stake here at OU."

College football seems to always be a world of bad timing for top flight assistant coaches, especially those at good programs. Head coaching jobs open up in early November or December, right when the good collegiate football teams are playing for post season honor.

When the Missouri job came open during the 2000 season the Tigers had a great interest in Co-Defensive Coordinator Brent Venables. However, when the Tigers came calling Venables was right in the middle of coaching the Sooners in the Big 12 title game and he didn't want to talk to anybody officially until after that game. Missouri couldn't wait and a few days later hired Gary Pinkel.

Know matter how you slice it, if Michigan State or anybody else wants to talk Mike Stoops, they will have to find the right time.

"That has always been the case for us around here the last three years," said Stoops. "We are not going to do anything to compromise our positions here and we are not going to get on a plane and fly out for three days when we have a championship game or a bowl game to prepare for. My resume speaks for itself and I have now been around for a while. I think people know what I stand for and what I am all about. If somebody really has an interest in me they will wait unit I can give them some solid attention, but they should have a pretty good idea what I am all about anyway."

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