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NCAA Football: Iowa State at Oklahoma
Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

For the first time since 1998, the Oklahoma football program will have a coaching search.

According to multiple reports, Oklahoma Sooners head coach Lincoln Riley is leaving Norman to accept the same role with the USC Trojans.

In five years as the head coach at OU, Riley amassed a record of 55-10 and led the Sooners to four Big 12 Championships as well as three appearances in the College Football Playoff. He also coached two Heisman Trophy winners — Baker Mayfield and Kyler Murray — during his time in Norman. Since arriving in 2015 as offensive coordinator, the program his been the face of offensive football, regularly leading the nation in a number of statistical categories.

According to Dusty Dvoracek, we can look for Bob Stoops to serve as the interim head coach for OU’s bowl game.

There’s an awful lot to unpack today and in the days to come, and we’ll be sure to do just that. For now, the focus immediately shifts to a coaching search, and it’ll be fun to put together a preliminary list of potential candidates. At the moment, Dave Aranda should be at the top of the list, and I think OU needs to make him tell them ‘no’. He might do just that, but they have to try. At any rate, OU will keep the move the SEC in mind as far as a fit is concerned, so it’ll be interesting to see which names begin to pop up.

To say that this is shocking is an understatement, and this absolutely stings from a recruiting perspective. Having said that, this program has been elite for decades upon decades, and that won’t change due to the departure of one coach. We truly are entering into a new era for this program, and I’m choosing to be optimistic.

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