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#pounditMonday, October 3, 2022

Former Oklahoma players have clear pick for new head coach

Brent Venables in a Clemson hat

The abrupt departure of Lincoln Riley has left Oklahoma searching for a new head coach. For several Oklahoma alumni, the choice is an obvious one.

In the hours after Riley left for USC, there was a groundswell of support from ex-players for the Sooners to make a run at Clemson defensive coordinator Brent Venables. Venables has long been a highly-respected assistant coach, and served as Oklahoma’s defensive coordinator from 1999 to 2011.

Among those publicly calling for Venables were former Oklahoma defensive standouts Dusty Dvoracek, Aaron Colvin, and Tony Jefferson II, all of whom played under the current Clemson assistant.

As of Monday, there were no indications that Venables and Oklahoma were in contact, despite rampant rumors on social media. However, given his history with the school and his stature in college football, he would make sense as a candidate.

The Sooners definitely appear likely to conduct a larger search, and one NFL coach has already been pressed into speaking about the position. It doesn’t sound like a new coach, be it Venables or someone else, will be announced quickly.

Photo: Oct 2, 2021; Clemson, South Carolina, USA; Clemson Tigers defensive coordinator Brent Venables prior to the game against the Boston College Eagles at Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Adam Hagy-USA TODAY Sports

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