Early 80's- Game Worn



When 8-4 is considered to be a terrible season, you know that your football program is among the elite. Barry Switzer was recognized as an exceptional recruiter the first year he worked at Arkansas as a GA following his playing career there. Coming to Oklahoma in 1966 with Arkansas assistant Jim MacKenzie to serve as the latter's chief recruiter and assistant coach, Switzer assumed the top spot in 1973 and established his own mark with a 10-0-1 record. He kept OU on top of the Big 8 and the national rankings, and had an unbelievable run from 1976-1980 with results of 9-2-1, 10-2,11-1, 11-1, and 10-2 until a "disastrous" 7-4-1 in 1981 and 8-4 in '82. He was back to 11-1 by 1985 and of course, appeared in bowl games every year except 1983. All time OU greats adorned the roster of the early 1980's, running the Sooner Wishbone offense to a record-setting pace. QB and former U.S. Congressman J.C. Watts, David Overstreet, Stanley Wilson, Louis Oubre, Steve Sewell, Spencer Tillman, and Buster Rhymes were but a few from this group who had productive pro careers in the NFL and CFL. The Kelley helmets were a mainstay in the southwest and popular until the onslaught of lawsuits in the early 1980's forced many of the companies to leave the business. OU wore the easily recognized and beautiful Kelley crimson shell with the well-known OU logo, a helmet that was feared when the Sooners took the field.