Oklahoma head coach Lincoln Riley is entering his third season as head coach of the Sooners this fall. After coaching the program to two straight big 12 titles in his first two seasons and seeing his quarterback win the Heisman Trophy in back-to-back seasons, Riley has every right to be feeling confident in what his team will do in 2019. And if you needed an example of just how confident Riley is, his quote about the Big 12 competition will certainly prove to you just how much this guy is oozing in confidence.
Asked at a coaches luncheon about what teams in the Big 12 give him “sleepless nights,” Riley was open and honest about it. Nobody in the big 12 is causing Riley to scramble for some extra sleep.
“Every now and then you get asked these questions,” Riley responded. “In your mind, you go politically correct or tell the truth. So, the truth is none of ’em.”
Oklahoma is 18-2 against Big 12 opponents under Riley, including two victories in the Big 12 championship game. Only Iowa State (2017) and Texas (2018) have topped the Sooners, and they did so by a combined total of 10 points. Riley’s program is once again considered the team to beat in the Big 12 even though Texas appears to be closing in on being ready to make a run for a Big 12 title in the coming years.
Now, if the question was about what teams overall cause Riley to lose some sleep, perhaps the question might have been different. Oklahoma’s two playoff trips under Riley have not gone well with an overtime loss to Georgia in the Rose Bowl in the 2017 season and last year’s loss to Alabama. Will Riley be well-rested when the College Football Playoff begins this upcoming season? Or will any team in the Big 12 manage to give him the case of the night terrors?