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Friday, January 13, 2012
Oklahoma officially hires Mike Stoops

By Jake Trotter

It’s official. Mike Stoops is coming back to Norman.

Oklahoma announced the hiring in a release Friday. Stoops will serve as co-defensive coordinator and secondary coach along with Brent Venables. OU also announced that secondary coach Willie Martinez has resigned.

“Mike and Brent were out the door recruiting together within two hours of Mike’s hiring so we’re off to a good start,” coach Bob Stoops said in a statement. “Mike and Brent have a long history and comfort level working together, and have together led some great defenses.”

Clemson reportedly has made a push to hire Venables to be its defensive coordinator. The Tigers fired defensive coordinator Kevin Steele this week.

OU hasn’t announced yet whether Venables or Mike Stoops will call the plays.

If Venables stays, he and Mike Stoops will be co-coordinators for the second time in their careers. The two coordinated the OU defense from 1999-03 until Stoops took the head job at Arizona. Mike Stoops was fired from that job after the Wildcats got off to a 1-5 start this season.

“We feel very fortunate to have Mike on our staff. Over the past few months, because of the reputation he has built among his peers, he was a highly sought-after coach,” Bob Stoops said. “People across the country recognize his tremendous knowledge of the game and great energy. He will have a very positive impact on our program.”

Bob Stoops said that Martinez will pursue “attractive options” at other schools.

“I appreciate all of Willie’s work here,” Bob Stoops said. “He represented our program in the right way and will continue to do well in our profession.”