Does Sam Bradford Prove That Oklahoma Is a Lousy Team?

Larry BurtonSenior Writer INovember 25, 2009

First, let's explain that headline.

Sam Bradford is a great quarterback. After all, they don't give Heisman Trophies to hacks, and with Bradford at the helm, Oklahoma does as well as almost any team in college football.

But without him, they are a 6-5 team. And one that even Sooner fans would agree is a far cry from the one that was expected to contend for a national championship this year.

There are good teams that win despite the loss of a star or two, and then there are teams that are thought to be great, but are exposed as an average team without their star.

And while every team has its stars, most teams can still win without them. However, there is a danger to relying too heavily on just one star, and it was apparent this year in Norman, Oklahoma.

When Florida lost Tim Tebow earlier this year, they could rely on a smothering defense, a solid ground game, and a backup quarterback to help them win games. They did the same last year when wideout Percy Harvin was out.

Alabama lost one of its top defensive players, Donta Hightower, early for the entire season, yet they start this weekend as the top defense in all of college football. Many others thought they couldn't make a run this year without their best running back who had jumped to the NFL. Instead, his replacement is in the lead for the Heisman.

Another knock against Alabama's title run was their quarterback situation. John Parker Wilson also left for the NFL and in his place was a young man who had never started a single college football game.

That freckle faced young man is currently surpassing John Parker Wilson's offensive statistics and has already entrenched himself as a leader, a winner, and a championship contending quarterback.

There are teams and then there are supporting casts.

Oklahoma has a bunch of good players, but they proved that at best they are Sam Bradford's supporting cast, and not a team.

It makes one wonder what life will be like for Texas once they lose Colt McCoy. Can they make that transition? Are they still a good team? The argument can go either way.

We know that Florida will have life after Tebow and once Mark Ingram leaves, few in Alabama doubt the abilities of Trent Richardson and Eddie Lacey.

Those are teams. The title for best TEAM might just be decided in the SEC Championship game and not the National Championship game after all.

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