SOUTH BEND, Ind. — It had been 57 years. That was the last time players from Oklahoma had been able to celebrate a win over Notre Dame. In that time span, the Irish had captured seven straight victories, including last year’s 30-13 drubbing at Owen Field.
So when the Sooners knocked off the Irish 35-14 Saturday at Notre Dame Stadium, it shouldn’t have been a surprise that they would want to savor every moment of it.
“It’s awesome,” senior Tre Millard said. “It’s one of those games you come to Oklahoma for. It’s one of the games that it’s really a special moment to get two programs like this together like this in this type of game.”
With the win, the series now stands at 9-2 in favor of the Irish. But being able to get this latest win gets the proverbial monkey off their backs and showed they can beat the storied program.
“It’s good for the tradition,” senior Jazz Reynolds said. “I think the last time we beat them it was in the 1950s or something like that. It’s not just for us this season. It’s for all the alumni and guys that fell to them. It’s a good second win against this program.”
For much of the two weeks leading up to the game, many of the Sooners said it was just another contest on the schedule. Despite being bullied by the Irish in front of their home fans in 2012, they were focused only on beating whoever was next.
That was not the case with Jalen Saunders. Even though he had a impressive outing the year before, he took the loss personally. He was looking forward to making the trip to Sound Bend and exacting a bit of revenge.
“This win means a lot to me,” Saunders said. “I wanted to get back from last year. This win means a lot for our program. We haven’t had a good winning percentage against Notre Dame. So this win means a lot for us. Personally I had this game circled on the calendar in the offseason. I was really upset about it and the way it needed last year. I was just really happy we got this win and celebrated.”