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Oklahoma WR Drake Stoops Describes Billy Bowman Scrap as 'Just Two Guys Going at It'

When Monday's practice went full speed and got physical, Stoops and Bowman got into a brief altercation — which is perfectly normal for college football teams.

NORMAN — Drake Stoops has been to a lot of practices at Oklahoma — way more than his teammates.

That’s why he insists his mini dust-up with safety Billy Bowman in Monday’s practice was no big deal.

“That happens in practice,” Stoops said after Wednesday’s spring practice session ended. “Billy’s my guy. He’s an amazing player and ultimate competitor. As am I. You know, sometimes things just get heated. That’s just two guys going at it. Me and him are still great teammates. Just two guys going at it. Nothing more than that.”

It wasn’t the only entanglement in Monday’s “W” drill — a full-speed, blocking and tackling drill in which a ballcarrier runs past two waves of single defenders who are being blocked by one blocker. Another good one was Michigan transfer wideout Andrel Anthony and senior cornerback Jaden Davis locking up and exchanging a little more than shoves.

Stoops, a senior wide receiver, has seen many throwdowns attending drills as a youngster watching the Sooners practice for his dad.

“That’s just the nature of it,” Stoops said. “You go against a guy for so many times, so many days in a row, day after day, rep after rep — after a while you just get tired of going against each other. Tempers go and then you just gotta remain level-headed after that and get back in your game and continue to play and do your assignment.”

Stoops said he and Bowman will harbor no animosity — because Monday’s entanglement was nothing out of the ordinary. Their lockers are almost adjacent inside the Switzer Center, and they’ll have way more opportunities to pat each other on the back than they will to smack each other in the face.

“That’s OK every now and then,” Stoops said, “then you gotta squash it right then and there and not let it carry over to the next play and not let it get you outside your game and just let it go, and then you guys are back to being good teammates again.”

He also insisted it’s not hard to put such a thing aside — even though, sure, it may happen again in a future drill. It’s actually easy, Stoops said.

“Just knowing that at the end of the day, you care for all your brothers out here,” he said. “ … I have extreme respect for Billy. I think he’s an amazing player and he’s gonna do amazing things. He’s an NFL guy for sure. So going against him makes me better, and I think me going against him makes him better. I think having a mutual respect for each other and helping each other grow and get better at that, that’s how you just squash it right then and there, and know that it’s nothing more than that, just two competitors going at it and that’s it.”

Stoops said he was impacted by what his new position coach said about him last week — that he’d go with Stoops down “any dark alley in South Dallas.”

“I did see that,” Stoops said. “That was awesome. I appreciate that. I’d like to go through a dark alley with any of my boys in that room. I trust all of ‘em.”