The Oklahoma Bedlam Football Game is the annual battle between the Oklahoma Sooners and the Oklahoma State Cowboys. Although historically the Sooners have had the greater success, recent years have been marked by tough competition.
Bedlam has been known to divide friends and families between the colors orange and red. It fills the sportscasts for a week as both sides make derogatory remarks about the other. It leaks from the radio waves on sports talk, the analysis and the predictions. In the end, it will bring a year-long celebration for one and disappointed shame for the other. It is Bedlam.
There isn't much more hyped in the state of Oklahoma than the Bedlam game. Along with the emotions, it also brings various ad campaigns and sales events as everyone milks it for all it's worth. But in the end, it's a football game, one charged with emotion and carrying serious consequences.
You will struggle to find an Oklahoman, even one who doesn't care much about football, who hasn't chosen sides on the issue. People who get along famously year round will shrug their shoulders and frown at each other when "the game" rolls around. Bedlam is for Oklahoma bragging rights, and nobody ever knows what to expect.
The 2013 Bedlam Football Game will be played on Saturday, December 7th in Stillwater. Game time has been set for 11 a.m., and it will be televised on ABC.
100 years old in 2005, the Bedlam series has historically been dominated by Oklahoma, who owns a first 99 year record of 76-16-7 against the Cowboys, formerly Oklahoma A&M. Since 1995, however, the series has been somewhat more representative of its moniker.
That was the year that a Bob Simmons-led Oklahoma State team shutout Howard Schnellenberger's Sooners in Norman 12-0. The victory was widely celebrated in Stillwater, of course, and signaled more parity between the two teams in the coming years.
From 1995-2004, no team won more than 2 games in a row. Oklahoma, almost always favored in the game, blew out the Cowboys during that time on an occasion or two, but they were also upset. One of those upsets came in 2001 when Oklahoma was closing in on a trip to the National Championship game. Freshman QB Josh Fields hit Rashaun Woods for a TD in the 4th quarter to give the Cowboys the 16-13 win. The very next year, OSU won yet again in a 38-28 game that wasn't as close as the score indicated.
The Sooners, though, would go on to win the next eight straight: decisively in 2003, by a nose in 2004, ending the "no more than two in a row" issue with a large margin win in 2005 and apparently returning to their previous dominance with 27-21 victory in 2006 and a blowout win in 2007. In 2008, soon-to-be Heisman winner Sam Bradford led his National Championship game bound Sooners into Stillwater and got the victory in a shootout, and the 2009 game ended in a 27-0 Oklahoma shutout. 2010's game, one of the more exciting in the recent history of the series, went down to the wire, where OU won 47-41.
The streak was broken in 2011 when the Cowboys destroyed Oklahoma in Stillwater, 44-10 behind soon-to-be NFL draft picks Brandon Weeden and Justin Blackmon, but Oklahoma returned to its winning ways in 2012 with an stirring OT victory in Norman.