2015 AFC and overall OIL champion War Pony now has a custom mini-helmet to add to his two championship jerseys. As always, this fantastic helmet was manufactured by HelmetNation, LLC. And, while we're showing off new helmets, proper custom helmets for Lucky Enuf and SoonerJack arrived today as well. Check them out on their team pages. And you can view all the previous championship jerseys and helmets here.
The 2015 championship jerseys have arrived, and they look fantastic. As always, Earl at Hopco Sports did a great job. Congratulations to three-time champion Jack Bruesch, two-time champion Jimmy Venable, and first-year champion Zack Brake. You can check out all 13 championship jerseys here.
NORMAN — Third-seeded SoonerJack defeated the DARC NARCS Monday night to snag their third OIL Bowl championship. The third entry on the Harrington Trophy is an OIL record (Lucky Enuf, Arrogant Americans, and War Pony are tied for second with two championships each).
ANADARKO — Kevin Pyle's Lucky Enuf team obliterated Mike Schmidt and Dead Again during Rivalry Week, clinching a playoff spot. And this was no small feat. Pyle has been so successful in the OIL that it's hard to believe he hasn't made the playoffs since 2010. For a team with two OIL Bowl championships and the word lucky in its name, Lucky Enuf had been decidedly unlucky the past five seasons . . . including 2012, when they scored the most points in the league but missed the playoffs.
That all came to an end Sunday night, when Pyle scored 214.70 points against his archrival (raising his overall record against Dead Again to 7-8). Congratulations to Pyle and Lucky Enuf. They now have to face 2008 and 2011 champion SoonerJack in the first round of the playoffs. It will be a rematch of the 2008 OIL Bowl that infamously ended in a tie.
The managers for the 2008 and 2011 champion SoonerJack and 2013 champion Dogs of War will soon receive their championship mini-helmets. The final piece to the helmet puzzle is the 2009 champion ThroatPunchers, who finished in second place the following season before leaving the league to commish the MGL full-time (opening up a spot for Yancy Baldwin).
The jerseys for each OIL champion arrived yesterday. They were designed by the team manager and Andrew Krause and manufactured by Hopco Sports. Not pictured: 2009 Champion ThroatPunchers (left the OIL after 2010 season to commish the MGL). NOTE: Due to a miscommunication with the manufacturer, SoonerJack has two #11 jerseys rather than one #08 and one #11. We are working on getting that remedied.
Compiled and edited by Justin C. Cliburn
This is the first installment in our ongoing oral history project. You can read later chapters here.
To understand the OklahomIraqis League ("the OIL"), one must know who its members are and what brought them together. The league began at Camp Liberty in Baghdad, Iraq in 2006. It was resurrected in 2007 and kept alive each successive season. It's the way they keep in touch and share news with the men they served with in Iraq. Sometimes it's the only way because, although the men of the OIL are incredible friends, they may have never known each other without the Army National Guard. They came from different backgrounds and followed different career paths, but they served together as soldiers. Their bond would never be what it is without the experiences they shared one year in Iraq.
Their story is important, even if only to them, because when historians chronicle the Iraq War, they will focus on the usual fare: the battles; the successes and the failures; the bombings and the civil war . . . and the presidents and generals who managed them.
But it will be up to the everyday Joes, the boots on the ground, to tell their stories . . . because no one else will. Who were these men? Why did they join the military? What did they do over there? How are they now? And what has kept them close since they first went to war together? These questions may be important only to those who already know the answers, but they need to be shared just the same.
What follows is an oral history of the OIL, as told by the men who lived it, beginning with the combat mission that inspired it. It is by no means an exhaustive history of that combat mission in 2005-2006; such a history would fill a book of its own. But it is a decent overview of the year that preceded the formation of the OIL: where they were; what they'd experienced; how they felt. 152 Oklahoma soldiers served on that mission, but just a fraction of them are represented here. Each soldier below speaks for himself as an individual. Collectively, their memories form a history best expressed through the oral tradition of storytelling through conversation.
Soldiers are traditionally a guarded bunch, reluctant to show emotion or share their feelings, so the following is a rare look into the collective memory of one group of soldiers in Iraq almost a decade ago.
Championship jerseys have been ordered for all OIL1 champions still in the league. The manufacturer says they will be shipped the second week of December. Those receiving jerseys are: Lucky Enuf (navy blue home jersey for 2006 championship); Whackers (red home jersey; 2007); SoonerJack (crimson home jersey for 2008; white away jersey for 2011); and Dogs of War (white away jersey for 2013). Arrogant Americans already received a home and away jersey for their 2010 and 2012 championships.
The trade deadline in the OIL was October 31. It's been an active season, with multiple trades completed before the first ball was even snapped, and it stayed that way all the way to the trade deadline.
First, SoonerJack (sitting at 3-5 and in bye week hell), sent Chicago Bears TE Martellus Bennett (who is on a bye this week) to Arrogant Americans for Indianapolis Colts RB Trent Richardson and Philadelphia Eagles TE Zach Ertz, neither of whom are on a bye this week. The trade made sense for both teams. SoonerJack is still in the playoff hunt and cannot afford a sixth loss. Kudos to Bruesch for doing all he can to fight for that playoff spot. For Cliburn's Arrogant Americans the trade upgrades his TE position while giving up only a couple backup players.
Then, two likely playoff teams completed a trade designed to bolster their playoff rosters. Pyle's Lucky Enuf sent Oakland WR James Jones (who has been a serviceable WR3/Flex play in PPR formats) to Trovillo's Dirty Hippies for St. Louis WR Tavon Austin, Baltimore RB Bernard Pierce and San Francisco RB Carlos Hyde. For Pyle, the trade gives him the valuable handcuff to Frank Gore in Carlos Hyde, as well as a boom-or-bust WR in Tavon Austin. The Hippies, meanwhile, gave up a few backup players for a WR who can fill a valuable Flex spot while Giovani Bernard is injured.