Bob Stoops hasn’t been shy about taking on the SEC in the media, so when he heard Alabama coach Nick Saban tried to downgrade the Sooners' 45-31 win against the Tide in the Sugar Bowl last season, Stoops fired back.
During an appearance on ESPN on Tuesday, Saban said it was difficult "getting [his team] to try to play a consolation game."
Alabama was No. 1 in the national rankings before it was upset by Auburn during the final week of the regular season. The loss bumped the Tide from the SEC title game and ultimately the national championship game.
When asked about Saban’s comments during Big 12 media days on Tuesday, Stoops made it clear he wasn’t buying the excuse.
“We’ve played for quite a few national championships and when we don’t play for one it never seems to be the mantra but anyway you can make all the excuses you want or not,” he said. "The bottom line is, it is what it is.
“And they sure looked good that first series, I’ll tell you that.”
Stoops didn’t stop there. He continued to rail against Saban during his interviews with ESPN on Wednesday.
Stoops on Saban’s consolation game quote: “So if I’m not in a national championship game, that means I’ve got a built in excuse"— Brett McMurphy (@McMurphyESPN) July 23, 2014
This isn’t the first time Alabama has played the "consolation game" card. It was the same excuse the Tide used when it lost to Utah in the Sugar Bowl in 2009.
Stoops also took aim at the rest of the SEC and the perception that it’s the toughest conference in the country.
Bob Stoops mentions Texas A&M’s non-conference schedule: “Lamar, Rice, SMU, La-Monroe. Those are all a bunch of toughies"— Brett McMurphy (@McMurphyESPN) July 23, 2014
Maybe no one should mention that Texas A&M’s strength of schedule is No. 5, according to the NCAA, and Oklahoma’s is 93.
Still, it’s good to see Stoops’ SEC troll game is on point this early in the season.
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