The SEC media days are in full swing. One topic brought up to just about every coach and player is the addition of Oklahoma and Texas in 2024.
One coach Sooner fans wanted to hear from was former Sooners great and current Tennessee Volunteers head coach Josh Heupel.
Heupel is the last Sooners quarterback to lead Oklahoma to a national championship.
After his playing days were over, he became an assistant coach at his alma mater. He played a big role in developing future Heisman Trophy winner Sam Bradford.
As quarterbacks coach, he also played a big role in some of those historic offenses.
Then Heupel was promoted to offensive coordinator. At that point, the offense dipped and the quarterback recruiting and development dropped off.
After a poor 2014 campaign, the Sooners and Heupel parted ways.
This left a sour taste in the mouth of the fan base. He was asked about his relationship with OU, and Heupel said there’s no fracture.
He said he has great memories of his time in the crimson and cream.
“The relationship with Oklahoma really isn’t complicated,” Heupel said. “I’ve got nothing but great memories with the people and my time there.
Everybody there shaped who I am and where I am today. I still have a lot of great friends and teammates who live out there.”
Heupel called his return to Norman a unique day in his coaching career. It’s going to be an emotional day for a lot of people.
No, Heupel’s tenure didn’t end the way anyone wanted. There was a real chance that if things went well when he was the offensive coordinator,
he would have been in line for the head coaching job when Bob Stoops stepped down.
That isn’t how things worked out. Sometimes in life, a difficult decision like that is best for everyone and that’s okay.
There’s pressure with coaching at the school you played for and won at. Since Heupel has gotten away from that, he’s grown so much as a coach.
He’s one of the best offensive minds in the nation and it looks like he’s turned Tennessee around. But it’s time for this reunion.
The one thing about Sooner Nation is they love and take care of their own.
When Heupel returns, there will likely be some kind of tribute video. Sooner Nation will welcome him home with a standing ovation.
It’s time to heal the wounds that were left and remember all of the great things Heupel did for the program.
He deserves that for what he did at Oklahoma. Some schools say it but in 2000, Heupel along with his teammates made sure to let the whole nation know Oklahoma was back.
He played a massive role in bringing the program back to prominence and he should be celebrated for that.