Behind a spectacular defensive performance and a late offensive surge, Brent Venables and the Oklahoma Sooners took care of business against the SMU Mustangs, 28-11.
Unfortunately, the storylines that circulated after the game weren’t about the final score or the Sooners’ showing, but about offensive coordinator Jeff Lebby and his father-in-law, Art Briles.
Briles was spotted on the field following Oklahoma’s win, along with the rest of Lebby’s family, and his presence sparked outrage among Sooner fans and members of the media.
In their post-game press conferences, both Lebby and Venables addressed the situation, as did Oklahoma Athletic Director Joe Castiglione, leaving plenty of questions to be answered this week.
On Monday, Lebby addressed the situation with a statement in his weekly press conference.
“I suspect some of you might have questions regarding my father-in-law and his presence at the game Saturday night, and I want to go ahead and address this. I’ve got a statement for you guys that I’ll read,” Lebby said in his opening statement. “One, I just want everybody to understand my father-in-law, his presence on the field after the game the other night created a distraction and I do apologize for that. That was not the intent, at all. The intent was just to celebrate with my family.
“I do want to correct some reports that claimed he had a sideline pass. There was not a sideline pass given out. He was actually on the field only when other families were down there and were present. Joe Castiglione and Coach Venables have both addressed concerns with me and talked with me about it and, again, can make sure that everybody understands that this is something that will not come up again. So, I wanted to start with that and get into questions.”
Despite being pressed a couple of times on issue, Lebby declined to answer any further questions concerning the circumstance.
“I’ve said what I was going to say on the matter today, and we’re gonna talk about Tulsa or SMU,” Lebby said.
Oklahoma will hit the road for the first time this season on Saturday against Tulsa, with kickoff set for 2:30 p.m. CT on ESPN2.