"I could be standing on top of him or sitting on top of him and he would not surrender or quit or give up. I’d have to kill him in order for him to stop fighting back. He always had a fighting spirit. That’s what I remember about him.
“I don’t think anyone could have ever imagined this. Thirty or 40 years ago we were kids and growing up and playing on the south side of Youngstown, whatever sport was in season and then on to (Cardinal) Mooney. We played as much as we could play. Coming from a coaching family, our father was a coach; we were around it all the time. So the fact that we’re coaches I don’t think is any big surprise, but I don’t think any of us could have ever imagined Bob going on and becoming the head coach at Oklahoma, let alone surpassing legends like Bud Wilkinson and Barry Switzer. It’s really been amazing. I just can’t say how happy we are for Bob and really for the Oklahoma people, and just really how proud we are of him.
“We laughed a lot. When these guys become head ball coaches (Bob, Mike and Mark) all of a sudden they get a lot of general knowledge and they know everything about everything, but we still love them.”
Assistant Coach Ron Stoops (Bob’s older brother)
“The thing about Bob is consistency. He’s the same person as when I was here the first time as he was the second time when I came back. He’s a good guy to play for and a great guy to work for. He lets you do your job and he expects you to do it the right way. I’m sure he’ll take a lot of pride in it but he’s much more concerned about (beating) Kansas State than he is about a record. I think he’s probably just thankful to be here and to coach all these great players. That’s a pretty special achievement. That’s what you’re expected to do at Oklahoma.”
Defensive Coordinator Mike Stoops (Bob’s younger brother)
University of Oklahoma
“I’d like to congratulate Bob for breaking the all-time wins record at Oklahoma. That’s one heck of an accomplishment. I know from being a first-year head coach how hard wins are to come by and I can’t imagine having 158 of them. So congratulations to Bob and the Oklahoma Sooners.”
Head Coach Mark Stoops (Bob’s younger brother)
University of Kentucky
“Well that is a great accomplishment. I was a good friend of Bud Wilkinson and when I was a high school coach at Odessa, Texas I had four or five players on Coach Wilkinson’s team. So I followed Oklahoma through the years. When Barry Switzer was a graduate assistant at Arkansas I was the offensive coordinator and he was just an outstanding coach then as a graduate assistant and what he accomplished at Oklahoma is unbelievable. Bobby Stoops is going to be there for a few more years, that’s for sure. Bobby and Barry are out of the same mold. They are winners. They are great men to play for"
“Well, I’ll put it this way. When I was growing up I lived on a farm. When my daddy wanted to give me a few words of wisdom he’s march me through the barn and on the way he’d pick up the horse whip and take me behind the barn so my momma couldn’t see out the kitchen window what was going on. He’d say, bend over son I want you to remember this for the rest of your life. Then he’d pop me. After a couple of pops I’d say, ‘Daddy, what is it you want me to remember?’
“He said, ‘Son, I don’t know what you’re going to do when you grow up or what you’re going to become but if you’re going to be successful or be a winner, you have got to surround yourself with winners.’ I carried that forward in hiring all my assistant coaches. I never hired an assistant coach in my life, in 47 years of coaching, unless I was completely convinced that he was motivated to become a head coach. Then I knew he would see that his players graduated, he’d be ethical and he’d do things right. That’s what I hired and I’ve got 22 assistants that are head coaches in the NFL or college.”
Head Coach Hayden Fry
SMU, North Texas and the University of Iowa
“I’ve known Bob as a valued member and leader on our early 1980s team, then as a young person starting his coaching career at the University of Iowa. Most recently I had the opportunity to compete against him in the 2011 Insight Bowl. Due to our association and friendship, I have followed Bob’s career with great interest ever since he left Iowa to take a coaching position at Kent State.
“Bob has enjoyed tremendous success every step of the way, and in my estimation, will go down historically as one of the best college coaches of all-time. To me, even more impressive than his success on the field is the caliber of person he is and the type of role model he has been to everyone associated with him.”
Head Coach Kirk Ferentz
University of Iowa
“I’d just like to take a moment to congratulate my very good friend Bob Stoops on a tremendous accomplishment to be the winningest coach in Oklahoma history. It’s a program that has great tradition and has had some very, very successful coaches there. For Bob to accomplish what he’s accomplished in terms of the wins that he’s had there and the way that he’s done it in a first class way, always do it the right way. He’s a ball coach, and that’s what I like about him the best. There’s been many occasions where we’ve visited about football, and I really have a lot of appreciation for Bob and his family for all they’ve done and the affect that they’ve had on college football. Congratulations again buddy. That’s a great job!
Head Coach Nick Saban
University of Alabama
“I want to congratulate my friend and mentor Bob Stoops for breaking the all-time win record at the University of Oklahoma. It’s a great program with an incredible tradition that I’ve always been very proud to have been a part of at one point in time. I remember when Bob first got there and it kind of sums up Bob Stoops. Bob, of course, is from Youngstown, Ohio, and we were sitting around the hotel room, the whole group of new coaches in the middle of the winter in Norman, Oklahoma, and a couple of his friends from Youngstown called and said to Bob congratulations on Oklahoma, this that and the other, on getting the job at Oklahoma, and Bob and the whole Youngstown, Ohio, accent and everything, because they’ve never completely taken Youngstown out of Bob Stoops. Bob gives the blank look and says, ‘Yeah, yeah, I’m doing alright.’ He sounded very much like his roots. So I couldn’t be prouder to call Bob Stoops my friend and also see him what’s he’s done at the University of Oklahoma in leading that program.”
Head Coach Mike Leach
Washington State University
“Your 158thwin in a place like Oklahoma? That’s a special accomplishment. I congratulate you, not only on the wins, but how you’ve done it. The class that you bring to that program, the way you serve your players, what you’ve done for your assistant coaches; you’re everything that’s right about college football. I’m proud to have worked under you, but I’m even more proud to call you my friend. Congratulations Bob, I’m happy for you.
“Bob, I know that everybody back home (in Youngstown) is proud of you and what you’ve accomplished. I know you’re your dad is looking down from up above, he looked after all of us, but I know it’s special for you knowing that he’s looking down on you and he’s so proud of what you’ve accomplished. I know that means a lot to you.”
Head Coach Bo Pelini
University of Nebraska
“Congratulations to Coach Bob Stoops on becoming the winningest football coach in the storied history of Oklahoma football. That by itself speaks volumes about the job he has done in Norman.
What a lot of people may not know is the balance that he brings to that position in regard to his coaching staff and families. He was a terrific example for me about the importance of maintaining a proper balance. He is a great example of being very successful and doing it with class, integrity and with proper balance.”
Head Coach Kevin Sumlin
“Bob Stoops, and Ohio guy, I couldn’t be happier for you. You’re a great coach, a great teacher and a great role model to your team. You have just done a tremendous job for Oklahoma. I’m certainly proud of you. Congratulations on a job well done!”
Head Coach Gary Pinkel
University of Missouri
“I’d like to say big congratulations to Bob Stoops. An honor to have coached and worked at Oklahoma, but really an honor to come and work for you, Coach. Learned so much, so many great players, it was a great place, great times, and the best thing’s working for maybe as strong, as great a leader, as great a man as there is in college football. Congratulations to you, Sooner Nation, all the great players. There’s more to come, too. Love you, Coach. Congratulations.”
Head Coach Kevin Wilson