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College football recap: OU gets new coach, OSU comes up inches short, bowl game matchups set

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Ty Russell / Oklahoma Football / Provided
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New Oklahoma Sooners football coach Brent Venables is welcomed back to Norman Sunday night.

One week after OU began its search for a new head football coach following the surprising departure of Lincoln Riley, the Sooners have found their man, and it's a familiar face.

Brent Venables was clearly fired up in this social media post as he boarded a jet to Norman Sunday.

Hundreds of fans greeted Venables when his plane landed at Max Westheimer Airport in Norman.

"To have the opportunity...the first time I get to lead a program, at Oklahoma? Are you kidding me? It doesn't get any better than this. It really doesn't," Venables said.

It's the culmination of a tumultuous week or so for the OU football program. It started with losing Bedlam and a shot at a national title, then losing its head coach, several assistants and high profile recruits. It ends with the hiring of Venables, the former OU defensive coordinator who has served in the same role for powerhouse Clemson for the past decade.

A game of inches

The weekend didn't end up as expected for the Oklahoma State Cowboys, as they fell to the Baylor Bears in the Big 12 Championship Game Saturday by a score of 21-16.

OSU was put into a hole as quarterback Spencer Sanders threw four interceptions, but the Cowboys had a shot to win the game in the final seconds.

Ultimately, the Cowboys came up inches short of the goal line in a thrilling battle with the Bears.

The loss ended any hope the Cowboys had at securing a spot in the College Football Playoff. But, that point may have been made moot when Alabama beat previously undefeated Georgia in the SEC Championship Game, ensuring their spot in the playoff.

Bowl game matchups

All three NCAA FBS teams in Oklahoma are going bowling.

OSU earned a spot in a New Year's Six bowl game โ€” the Fiesta Bowl โ€” against Notre Dame. The Cowboys have never faced the legendary Fighting Irish in college football history. That game takes place in Glendale, Arizona on Jan. 1 on ESPN.

As for the Oklahoma Sooners, theyโ€™ll face the Oregon Ducks in the Alamo Bowl in San Antonio, Texas on Dec. 29 on ESPN.

Tulsa is bowl eligible, too, and will play Old Dominion in the Myrtle Beach Bowl in Conway, South Carolina on Dec. 20, also on ESPN.

Logan Layden is a reporter and managing editor for StateImpact Oklahoma.
Ryan LaCroix is the Director of Content and Audience Development for KOSU.
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