Oklahoma Sooners Head Coach Brent Venables recently addressed his team’s underwhelming performance in the 2022 season.
Despite finishing with a losing record for the first time in decades, Venables highlighted that the close nature of their defeats distinguished them from other struggling programs.
He even took a clear jab at Miami Hurricanes Head Coach Mario Cristobal and his team.
“6-7, none of it’s any good, right?” Venables stated in an interview with SiriusXM. “But had we gotten blown out by a Middle Tennessee, had we gotten beat by Florida State 45-3, the conversation is probably a little different.”
The references to Middle Tennessee and Florida State were highly specific and left little doubt that Venables was pointing at Miami, who had suffered a 45-31 loss to Middle Tennessee and a significant blowout loss to Florida State in the previous season.
Both Oklahoma and Miami faced off against Florida State last year. The Sooners narrowly lost 35-32 in the Cheez-It Bowl, while the Hurricanes suffered a more lopsided defeat.
Analysts speculate that Venables’ snarky comments may be linked to recent heated recruiting battles between Oklahoma and Miami for highly sought-after prospects in the 2024 class.
“Oklahoma won out for Davon Mitchell and Jayden Jackson over Miami and others recently,” revealed 247Sports Director of Recruiting Steve Wiltfong. “Those two are in the thick of it for five-star David Stone as well.”
Davon Mitchell, a four-star tight end from California’s Los Alamitos, recently committed to the Sooners. He is ranked as the #7 tight end and #85 overall prospect in the 2024 class.
Jayden Jackson, a three-star defensive lineman from Florida’s IMG Academy, also pledged his commitment to Oklahoma, despite being in Miami’s recruiting territory.
Oklahoma’s successful recruitment in Florida might extend further, as they hold an edge in securing the commitment of five-star defensive lineman David Stone from IMG Academy, who originally hails from Oklahoma.
Miami, however, holds an advantage in the 2024 recruiting rankings, sitting at #16 in the 247Sports Composite Team Recruiting rankings, while Oklahoma currently ranks at #26.
As the rivalry between Oklahoma and Miami intensifies on and off the field, both programs are undoubtedly striving to secure the best talent for their programs going forward.
How successful do you think Venables will be at Oklahoma?
Who has the brighter future – the Sooners or Canes?