Some of the most interesting moments of Monday’s Big 12 Media Days session came near the end when Oklahoma football coach Bob Stoops bumped into Kansas State quarterback Collin Klein in between interviews.
The two talked for a few minutes about all sorts of different topics. Football, marriage, honeymoons, country music, Blake Bell … They all came up.
For this blog post, we will focus on that last topic. Klein said Bell was in attendance for his wedding over the weekend, and then Stoops said something revealing. He told Klein that he got the idea to sub Bell (Oklahoma’s sophomore backup quarterback who once starred at Bishop Carroll) for Landry Jones as a short-yard specialist last year after watching Klein dive into the end zone week after week.
“I saw you running all these great plays,” Stoops said, “and I said, ‘Hey, I’ve got a guy with the same body over here. I need to borrow that.’ That’s where it all started.”
So the “Belldozer” origins trace back to Klein. Who knew?
A quick Google search reveals that Stoops has hinted at the connection before. And Bell’s breakthrough success as a power-running, touchdown-scoring quarterback certainly correlate with Klein. The 6-foot-6, 250-pounder scored his first collegiate touchdown against the Wildcats. Stoops must have watched lots of Klein film that week.
Bell impressed Stoops so much that he played in the remainder of Oklahoma’s games and finished the season with 171 rushing yards and 13 touchdowns. Following a big spring game, Sooners fans have already begun clamoring for him to see more playing time.
Stoops said that is unlikely to happen yesterday. He doesn’t want to alternate quarterbacks, and likes the big-play capabilities Jones brings to the field with his arm. But Bell will definitely continue to be a threat near the goal line.
If not for Klein first rushing for 1,141 yards and 27 touchdowns as a junior, that might not be the case.