The All-Time Top 5 Wishbone Quarterbacks at Oklahoma

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The All-Time Top 5 Wishbone Quarterbacks at Oklahoma

Sept. 26, 1970. The Oklahoma Sooners had just lost at home 23-14 to an average team in Oregon State. Barry Switzer sat in his office fuming over the loss.

The young assistant coach knew Oklahoma had better athletes than the Beavers, and should have come away with a victory.

But there was something holding Big Red back, and that something was called the Houston Veer.

Head Coach Chuck Fairbanks had implemented the offensive set he had picked up while coaching at Houston upon his arrival at Norman, Okla., in 1967 with good results at first, winning Big 8 titles in 1967 and '68.

After a disappointing outing in 1969, and a bad start to the 70 season, the fans were getting impatient coach Fairbanks, "chuck Chuck" bumper stickers marking their mood.

Barry knew that something had to be done, and fast. The annual war with the hated Longhorns was up next after an open date.

He started watching films on Texas for the upcoming match, not knowing how he could figure this problem out in time to save his head coach's job, along with his own.

As he watched the ugly orange dance up and down the field at will in a new offensive set called the Wishbone, laughing and giggling all while scoring at will.

He realized that he had better players at his disposal than the 'Horns.
Then it hit him.

"That's what we need to be doing." Barry said aloud to himself, then he decided that they need to do the unthinkable at Oklahoma and scrap the failing Houston Veer mid-season, something never done before or since at OU.

So, with the support of both the offensive and defensive staff, a young Barry Switzer underwent the daunting task of pleading his case to coach Fairbanks, and try to convince a proud man and coach that his playbook was no longer going to be able to win at an elite level.

To Chuck's credit, he listened to his understudy carefully and closely.
After Switzer finished his torrent, the head coach looked across the desk with his one eye squinted stare and said, "You know, I'll let you know in the morning."

That night was one of the longest nights Barry ever had, he sat up all night thinking it all over, wondering what Chuck would do.

After what seemed like an eternity, the next morning came, and with it came the head coach to work, walked up to Switzer and said those famous words, "Allright, we're going to the Wishbone."

With one simple sentence the game we love so much was forever changed, just like that.

Oklahoma lost in the Cotton Bowl against Texas two weeks later, but the OU coaching staff knew they were on to something.

Boy were they right, the Sooners would go on to "hang half a hundred" on the hated 'Horns the next year, and dominate the college football world for the next 20 years with the Wishbone set by doing what no one else (Texas) had. They had put speed into the "Bone."

While this offensive set requires a trio of fast "backs," well known is the fact that the quarterback is it's driving force.

No team has ever ran the set known as the Wishbone better than OU, and that reason rests solely on the fact that the Sooners have had the best Bone QBs ever. Bar none.

Here is a look at the best five to grace Owen Field.

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