Stoops addressing Oklahoma reactions after win on Rocky Top
Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops said Monday he is dealing internally with players about some postgame incidents caught on film after the 16th-ranked Sooners rallied to win in double overtime at Tennessee.
After the game, video caught Sooners linebacker and team captain Eric Striker shouting foul language directed at the SEC before leaving the field. There was also a photo of safety Hatari Byrd with his left arm raised and middle finger extended toward the crowd.
Striker, 21, apologized in a statement the Oklahoma football program posted on its Twitter account Monday night.
''In no way were my actions after Saturday's game a reflection of the way my parents raised me or the guidance I've been given as an Oklahoma football player,'' Striker said in the statement.
Tennessee coach Butch Jones said he spoke with Striker after the game. He said it was not a negative conversation, and the attention given to it was ''overblown.''
''I told him he's a heck of a player and (to) leave this place with class,'' Jones said. ''To me, I would respect that if an opposing coach said that to our players. That's wanting to respect your opponent. I have a tremendous amount of respect for Eric Striker and coach Stoops and the Oklahoma football program.''
Stoops said he was already working on ways to educate players about that kind of behavior. He didn't elaborate.
Stoops was asked if players are told to be aware of cameras that can be on them at all times.
''Sure we do, and they need to be reminded again,'' Stoops said during the Big 12 coaches' teleconference. ''But obviously when you have inappropriate language and gestures when they're out there in the heat of the moment immediately, you know, with an intense game like that, it will be dealt with internally.''
In what likely will stand out as the Big 12's top victory against out-of-conference opponents this season, Stoops said it was a bonus for the Sooners in how they rallied to win.
''You never want to be behind, but when you can come through that way, it really can give your team a boost to always know that you're always in it, keep fighting, have faith in what you're doing and things can change,'' the coach said. ''It definitely gives you a boost away from home and being down and coming back.''
Some other notes from the Big 12 coaches teleconference:
GOOD BYE: First-year Kansas coach David Beaty said he is holding up great and is still very excited about the Jayhawks, the league's only winless team and one of three teams going into an open date.
After opening with a 41-38 loss to FCS team South Dakota State, the Jayhawks (0-2) led 10-0 early at home before losing 55-23 to Memphis. They go to Rutgers on Sept. 26.
''After two weeks, it seems like it's an early time for a bye, but for us, with the experience of our players, it comes at a really, really good time,'' Beaty said. ''All of those things that we saw on tape, those things are all fixable, we've just got to be willing to step up and do them.''
No. 5 Baylor and West Virginia, among the seven 2-0 teams in the league, also don't play next weekend.
-Statistically, West Virginia junior Skyler Howard is the Big 12's most efficient passer, throwing for 622 yards with five touchdowns and no interceptions through the first two games.
''He's playing with a little bit of a chip on a shoulder, but he's also playing with confidence,'' said coach Dana Holgorsen. ''He just wasn't a recruited kid, always been told too slow, too short, and not strong enough to be able to play the game at this level. He wakes up every day trying to prove people wrong.''
-Second-year Texas coach Charlie Strong didn't agree with the use of the term rebuilding when asked about his Longhorns (1-1). ''We have to do a better job of coaching,'' he said. ''We've got players in place.''
-Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy changed his assessment of some of quarterback Mason Rudolph's missed throws in a 32-8 win over Central Arkansas. Immediately after the game, Gundy said there were six such throws. After watching the film, Gundy cut that in half and blamed three of those on poor routes by receivers.
AP Sports Writer Steve Megargee in Knoxville, Tenn. Contributed to this report.