OU vs. Texas Tech on Saturday

The Sooners open conference play at Owen Field on October 2, taking on the Red Raiders of Texas Tech. Kickoff time is at 11:30 AM in Norman as the game is being televised on Fox Sports Net, at least in the central part of the US. (The above link takes you to Fox Sports Net’s Saturday schedule, where you can poke around to find your local listing.)

The Pride offers a preview of the 2004 Movie show, featuring music from The Matrix, Lord of the Rings, and Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl. (The last selection is apparently unrelated to the fact that September 19 was International Talk Like A Pirate Day. Ahhrrr.)

As of gameday, it will be only three weeks until the Pride’s centennial! Marching slots are all full, but there’s still plenty of celebrating to do, so sign up now if you haven’t.

From the Centennial Committee

It will be glorious!

With the close of registration, we have 380 marchers returning for our 100 Years of Pride centennial reunion. To give you perspective, the Pride now marches 320. Based upon other alumni reunion events, the professionals at the college advised us that we’d have fewer than 200…Foolish professionals.

Three hundred eighty! That’s CCCLXXX. Our formations with the Pride cannot be complex – there won’t be room. We could go sideline to sideline, goal line to goal line…almost. When the Pride and the alumni are on the field together there will be seven hundred marchers. It will be glorious, just glorious!

On the other hand, we have a lot more people than we have football tickets. We are struggling to come up with additional tickets. At the moment, the athletic department has increased our allotment to 300. They are most cooperative and understanding … but have their limits. One hundred twenty-five guests have signed up making our total ticket demand 505.

We’re really scurrying to get more tickets from whatever source we can find. We will probably be “polling” the delegation to determine just how many “regular” seats we have and what other seats may be available. If you have “regular” seats, please keep them and plan to use them. Unless we can find a storehouse of tickets someplace it now looks unlikely that we will be able to accommodate guests at the game.

There is a chance that we will have some sort of “watch party” in the Union with people going to the stadium to march at half time. That’s not our first choice and no, we don’t yet know exactly how that will work. None of this limitation impacts the reception or the game-day business/social/lunch meeting.

The wind shirts have begun arriving. You’ll like them.

This is not the time to panic. We’ll tell you when that time arrives.

Please continue to monitor the alumni web site (www.oubandalumni.org) for updates on the ticket situation, schedules, and a list of returning alumni.

From the Centennial Committee

100 Years of Pride on the scoreboard

If you haven’t been to a home game yet this year, the north scoreboard (the “Galaxy” scoreboard, not the big SoonerVision TV-like one in the south stands) has been running a “100 Years of Pride” animation while the Pride is on the field. Here’s an anonymous blogger who captured a picture of it.

OU 63, Houston 13

We hope you were at Owen Field on Saturday night to see not only another great Sooner victory, but also some very moving rememberances of the date in both pre-game and halftime.

The gigantic Oklahoma state flag got a rest during this week’s pre-game. Instead, the north end of the field was covered with a gigantic United States flag during the traditional performance of “You’re A Grand Old Flag.” Just before the National Anthem, the fans learned that it would be followed by a fly-over in T-38 Talon fighter jets, from Sheppard Air Force Base and NATO, piloted by an Italian Air Force squadron. You’re probably thinking, “Those things never work out on time,” but just as the final note of the Star-Spangled Banner was ringing, four jets in formation appeared above the SoonerVision scoreboard. It could not have been timed one second better, and it was breathtaking!

At halftime, the Spirit of Houston marching band performed selections from Carmina Burana to the home side, and the Pride followed with “Cuban Fire” selections and a new drill to the student (east) side. Then both bands took the field at once to play a Roland Barrett remembrance for September 11, consisting of Taps, Amazing Grace, and America the Beautiful. 80,000-plus fans stood reverently for the performance, and at the end of America the Beautiful, cheered wildly as fireworks went off over the southwest corner of the stadium. Few people who were there will forget that performance.

After the game, as the Pride took the field for the post-game concert, the Spirit of Houston band traded a few tunes with them – and saluted us by playing Roland’s 1986 arrangement of Oklahoma Blues! Pride alumni (class of 1987) David Bertman directed a fine group that was a great credit to its university, and a joy to host in Oklahoma Memorial Stadium.

This was the second of six home games for 2004, and Homecoming – with the Centennial Celebration – is the fifth, in just six weeks. Click here to see how you can be part of it!

Were you at the game? Post a comment and share your experiences with other Pride alumni!

OU 40, Bowling Green 24

A record crowd of 84,319 fans watched the Sooners open their season with a fine victory over Bowling Green in a bright, sun-drenched, muggy Memorial Stadium on Saturday. They also saw The Pride of Oklahoma open its Centennial Celebration season with a halftime show of “Cuban Fire,” featuring music from Arturo Sandoval and Gloria Estefan.

They also saw the debut of the newly-recharted interlocking OU formation – hope you saw it – it looks just like the one on the 50-yard line! It was also “Proud Pride Parents” day for 2004, and the halftime announcements thanked all Pride parents for their support and love. Registered parents also received Pride Parents T-shirts, and enjoyed a post-game lunch and photos at Catlett Music Center. We hope many of you were there, passing along the Pride tradition!

Coming up next: a 6PM kickoff Saturday night as the Sooners host the University of Houston. The game opens TBS Superstation’s Big PlayStation Saturday season of prime-time college football telecasts, so it’s available nationally via cable or satellite.

Saturday is September 11, a date none of us will forget. At halftime, the Pride welcomes The Spirit of Houston, led by Pride alumni David Bertman, in a special patriotic tribute featuring both bands. If you get to the game, don’t forget the Pride’s pre-game concert outside Jacobsen Hall (just east of the North Oval) at 4:30 PM, and the post-game concert on the field.

Less than seven weeks to homecoming and the Centennial Celebration! BOOMER SOONER!

OU vs. Bowling Green tomorrow

The above link is to a PDF map of ABC’s coverage of the game – it’s on for most of the nation, except the northeast, industrial midwest, FL, AK, HI, and most of CA. It’s an 11 AM CT kickoff, so get up early to support the Sooners and the Centennial edition of The Pride of Oklahoma! The Pride will also appear at tonight’s Big Red Rally, so if you’re in Norman, come on out!

Oh, and check out the OU Foundation’s home page for a picture of Mel Penn (drum major, 1969-1972) and Clint Williams (drum major, 2002-2003) taken last year, with Clint in uniform. The Foundation’s Sooner Magazine will look at the upcoming Centennial Celebration:

The Pride of Oklahoma, OU’s award-winning marching band, celebrates its 100th anniversary of heart-pounding, foot-stomping halftime performances with a nostalgic look back at the generations of directors and bandsmen who built the tradition. Among those pictured are Clint Williams, left, who led the Pride down the field in 2002 and 2003, and Mel Penn, the 1969-72 drum major who originated the trademark “Oklahoma Strut” pre-game entrance. OU band alumni will hold a “100 Years of Pride” Reunion October 22-23, 2004

Click Homecoming 2004 News for more information!

Also: ESPN is following OU’s football program behind the scenes all year long, and the first installment covers the weekly Game Day Ops meeting, where Brian Britt joins folks from the Athletic Department and elsewhere at the University in trying to make sure everything that’s supposed to happen does so in the correct order and at the right time. (And yes, the Pride has the Bowling Green fight song ready!)

Boomer Sooner!