Ryan Chapman as published on SI.com is one of many writers to praise the 2022 Oklahoma University Softball Team writing that the “Sooners closed the year as the best team to ever take the field.”
The praise is justified.
“Oklahoma dominated in the early stages of the season, breezing through the Mark Campbell Invitational where Bahl fanned 14 UCLA Bruins, as well as conquering the Mary Nutter Classic despite a welcome befitting of a world renowned rock band,” Chapman wrote.
“OU ripped off 38-straight wins to start the season, a new NCAA Division I softball record, and fell just seven games shy of matching the longest win streak in the history of the sport.
“[Head Coach Patty] Gasso’s team logged run rule victories in 40 of their 62 games this year, also a new record, and would have run ruled the Texas Longhorns in both WCWS championship series games if the mercy rule wasn’t exempt at that stage,” Chapman writes. Click here for the full article.
We admire sports writers. They tend to be lovers of the game, fans of fair play and promoters of merit – something not often found in public policy debates.
In the spirit of full disclosure, this writer only discovered OU Softball in the last few years and it is the skill, enthusiasm, spirit and heart of the program that will keep me a fan for life. Yes, it is true that young girls of my family first brought me to the stands and reflections of those younger faces in the World Champions celebrating warm the heart. Each worked hard daily over long years to win first a place on the team and now historic victory at a level no other team has ever approached.
Oklahoma is the heart of the nation and this team showed how great hearts may grow. Beyond the statistics, these players demonstrated grit, fierce pride, uncompromising sportsmanship and faith. Coach Patty Gasso trained them on the field and off to be women, full spectrum humans of head and heart, powerful personalities and humble before God Almighty.
There was no sign of entitlement, oppression shaming or pampered victim excuses. This team came in all colors from throughout America for a single purpose – to be the best and win.
Oklahoma is a small, poor state with a chip or two on the shoulder, but those who remained or came after the Dust Bowl (1930s) battled to build life of value in our communities and countryside.
Professional golfers saw during the 2022 PGA at Southern Hills in Tulsa – the course may look easy until Mother Nature gets in the game – here her temper and sense of humor show in all four seasons and occasionally in the same day.
Our children find success from New York to Los Angeles to Washington D.C. We hope they boomerang back (except Sen. Elizabeth Warren, the poser). Oklahomans typically hold life-long loyalty. We support state sports stars as they move to the professional level and sometimes elect them to public office.
The frequent dangerous angry winds are far more real to Oklahoma than the hot air of provincial bi-coastal disdain. It is interesting to see ESPN writers now kindly considering Oklahoma – surprise. Just don’t tell the SEC we are coming to win more than football.
Not to go too off headline, but Rogers State won the 2022 DII softball championship title and never underestimate Oklahoma State University teams.
It is not “something in the water” it is attitude born around the family table, nurtured by friends, hailed by community and honored statewide.
Next up, the OU Baseball team has punched their own ticket to the College World Series in Omaha, Neb.
Fans will be there cheering, more watching and all proud of this unranked Cinderella team of mighty men. OU which is 24-10 since April 12, will begin the College World Series against Texas A&M.
And then there is football. Life is good in sports.