By Chip Rouse
If you are one to pick the Super Bowl team you will root for based on how many former Oklahoma football player are on the roster, I can help you out with your decision process.
Based on that decision criteria, you will be siding with the Kansas City Chiefs. The Chiefs, champions of the American Football Conference, will face the San Francisco 49ers, the National Football Conference champs, in Super Bowl LIV on Feb. 2 in Miami, Florida.
The Chiefs roster features three former Sooners, all three of which weren’t even born the last time Kansas City played in the Super Bowl. The Chiefs defeated the Minnesota Vikings 23-7 in Super Bowl IV in January 1970 and haven’t been back since.
Kasnsas City running back Damian Williams, tight end Blake Bell and long-snapper James Winchester have 16 NFL seasons between them, but this will be their first trip to the Super Bowl, at least as a player.
Williams, who played at OU in 2012 and ’13, has bee a big part of the Chiefs’ success this season. He rushed for close to 500 yards in the regular season with five rushing touchdowns and caught 30 passes, two for touchdowns. He accounted for five touchdowns in Kansas City’s two playoff wins that sent them to the Super Bowl.
At least one former Oklahoma player has been a part of 32 of the 54 Super Bowls that have been played. Former Sooners have made a total of 66 Super Bowl appearances, according to the OU athletic department, and 31 of those appearances have resulted in Super Bowl Rings.
There were no Oklahoma players on either side when the Chiefs beat the Vikings in Super Bowl IV. Defensive tackle Carl McAdams played for the New York Jets and cornerback Bobby Boyd played for the Baltimore Colts the year before that, when the Jets defeated the Colts in Super Bowl III.
And the season after Kansas City’s Super Bowl IV victory, offensive lineman Ralph Neely and wide receiver Lance Rentzel were on the Dallas Cowboys team that lost to the Baltimore Colts in Super Bowl V. Wide receiver Eddie Hinton was a starter for the Colts in that game.