HERMAN HICKMAN SAYS:
On alternate years second place in the Big Seven assumes a position of importance nationally. This is one of those years. Oklahoma is not eligible to represent the Big Seven at Miami in the Orange Bowl because of the conference's no-repeat rule, so the Kansas-Nebraska Act could be invoked or the Missouri Compromise-long lost in the files—be revived. Anyway, the stampeding Sooners will not be seen in the Sunshine State come January next year.
Oklahoma enters this season with a 30-game winning streak going and a potentially better squad than last year's, which was placed No. 1 in the country in all the postseason polls. Their prospects, covered in detail in The Eleven Elevens, are so frighteningly good that it will take all the coaching genius of Bud Wilkinson to maintain the proper equilibrium and guide this talent-laden squad through another undefeated season. Saturday after Saturday, year after year, Bud has been able to sell his players the idea that the next game was the most important one on the schedule. His task this season will be more difficult than ever. I'm going way out on a limb and predict that somewhere along the line, starting with "Cousin" Jim Tatum's visit to Norman with his Tar Heels on Sept. 29 through the visit to their country kinfolks, the Oklahoma Aggies, at Stillwater on Dec. 1, some team will surprise the Sooners. Armageddon will be at South Bend on October 27.
Second-finishing Nebraska could repeat. Pete Elliott has been lured away from Wilkinson's staff to take over his first head coaching assignment. Reports on him are good, and his new regime at Lincoln may give the bickering Cornhuskers the necessary lift.
It would be poetic justice for Don Faurot, the innovator of the split-T, now in his 21st year at Missouri, to have his-coming-of-age party in the environs of Miami this New Year's—and Missouri will be improved.
Chuck Mather, at Kansas, has had his troubles since leaving the fertile breeding ground of football players at Massillon High School, Ohio, from which he has imported many products of the area. He hopes for the proper germination of this imported seed. Beautiful crop reported, and improved season in prospect.
COLORS: Scarlet and cream.
BASIC OFFENSE: Split-T.
1955 RECORD: Won 5, lost 5.