OU coach Bob Stoops finally got on with it today and announced that Jay Norvell and Josh Heupel would serve as co-offensive coordinators, replacing new Indiana head coach Kevin Wilson.
The move comes as no surprise. What did catch my eye was the delegation of responsibilities – Heupel will call the plays.
Given Norvell’s background and experience, I had assumed he’d take over for Wilson and man the ship. Norvell already has two stints as an offensive coordinator in the bag, as well as experience on the pro level. Heupel, on the other hand, has worked wonders developing quarterbacks at OU, but he has yet to handle play-calling responsibilities on any level.
Does that mean Heupel is a little less “co-” than Norvell? Not exactly. Stoops gave play-calling duties to Wilson in 2005, for example, even though Chuck Long was considered the lead offensive coordinator at the time.
Also, no matter who is running things, the OU offense won’t look much different from what Sooner fans have seen under Wilson in the last few years.
Even so, the announcement does seem like something of a mini-upset when Heupel’s age and history are takent into account. (Then again, as we graduated from college in the same year, maybe I still just like to think of No. 14 as a young whipper-snapper.)
What really stands out to me is that Stoops has clearly put his national championship-winning quarterback on the fast track up the coaching ladder. From here, the only place left to go is the captain’s chair.
Following today’s news, would anyone be shocked if Heupel turned out to be Stoops’ eventual successor?