After 18 seasons as the head coach of the Oklahoma Sooners, ESPN has reported that sources indicate that Bob Stoops plans to retire from coaching. While this may come as a shock to Sooners' fans, considering the timing of the announcement, Stoops has long said that he wanted to retire while he was still young and not coach too long after he turned 50. Stoops is 56.

Bob Stoops OU career

The Oklahoma Sooners history saw two of the best head coaches in college football history leading them way before Bob Stoops ever showed up in Norman. Bud Wilkinson and Barry Switzer had led the Sooners to multiple National Championships and the legacy of winning was strong with the Sooners.

However, after Barry Switzer was forced to resign, Gary Gibbs took over and did a good job but was never able to measure up to the success of Switzer. Oklahoma Sooners fans are mostly spoiled to success and demanded change so Howard Schnellenger came in for one year and then former player John Blake took over and led the Sooners [VIDEO] to arguably the worst years of the program's history.

The Oklahoma Sooners hired Bob Stoops away from the Florida Gators, where he was an assistant coach, and he made an immediate difference. Using mostly Blake's players, Stoops led the Sooners to a New Year's Eve bowl in his first season. In his second year, Stoops and the Sooners won the National Championship.

With the Oklahoma Sooners, Bob Stoops has put up a 190-48 record and took the Sooners to a bowl game in all 18 seasons he worked as the head coach.

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The Sooners went to the national title game two more times and were just in the College Football Playoffs a couple of seasons ago. Stoops is leaving a big hole to fill in Norman, Oklahoma.

The future of the Oklahoma Sooners

Bob Stoops has always planned to retire when the time was right. Two years ago, Stoops hired Lincoln Riley to become the Oklahoma Sooners' offensive coordinator. In those two years, Riley turned the Sooners into one of the most powerful offensive teams in the nation. As Stoops steps away from his head coaching job, Lincoln Riley takes over as the head coach.

There has been fear the last two years in Norman that Riley was going to leave Oklahoma and take a job as a head coach with another college. Some big schools were looking at him this offseason. However, with Bob Stoops leaving now, he assures that the Oklahoma Sooners are left in the hands of Lincoln Riley. It will be strange not seeing Coach Bob Stoops on the Sooners' sidelines but he said he will be there for anything Oklahoma needs [VIDEO] in the future.