Jack Mildren, who quarterbacked the Oklahoma Sooners to great glory and then became the state’s lieutenant governor, died Thursday night after a bout with cancer. He was 58.
The Oklahoman’s Berry Tramel reports Mildren was diagnosed two years ago with cancer but had continued to serve as a vice chairman for Arvest Bank and host a daily sports radio show on WKY 930-AM.
Here are 3 Things You Should Know about Jack Mildren.
1. Mildren was considered by many the greatest quarterback in OU history. The godfather of the wishbone. He arrived in 1968 out of Cooper High School in Abilene, Texas, as one of the most ballyhooed Sooner recruits ever.
As a sophomore, Mildren set passing records. As a junior in 1970, when the Sooners got off to a struggling start, coach Chuck Fairbanks switched to the wishbone offense in mid-season, and history was made. Mildren was a natural for the option offense and made All-American in 1971, when OU set NCAA rushing records and ignited a nearly 20-year dynasty.
Be sure to read more Berry Tramel in today’s editions of The Oklahoman and online at NewsOK, about Jack Mildren. “There will be no more tomorrows for Jack Mildren. But his yesterdays will live forever on this side of the river”
2. Mildren was elected lieutenant governor in 1990. The Oklahoman’s John Greiner reports Mildren came into politics directly from a very successful career in the oil business in 1990 when he was elected lieutenant governor. Mildren ran for governor in 1994 as the Democratic Party nominee. He lost that election to Republican Frank Keating.
3. You can read quotes from many of Mildren’s friends online at NewsOK. You can also sign a virtual guest book. Here’s a few excerpts from those who already have:
Here’s the story on the wires this morning: It was so singular a marvel, so ambitious a feat, that its opening drew the president and a crowd of thousands. A leading national magazine said it stood poised to become “our most durable monument.”
Some 125 years later, the Brooklyn Bridge remains a powerful symbol of engineering might and imagination, and a revered fixture in the landscape of the nation’s largest city.
And it can still draw a crowd. Thousands of people are expected at the bridge’s 125th birthday blowout Thursday, with fireworks, a Navy flyover, a colorful new lighting scheme and the debut of a tribute song scheduled to honor the storied span. It opened on May 24, 1883.
Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull hits the silver screens today. And the reviews for the fourth installment of the adventure series are mixed. The Oklahoman’s George Lang – check out his Static Blog on NewsOK – gives it a 3.5 stars, saying it follows formula and entertains. Find your movie times at Wimgo.com.
Facebook is about to undergo a redesign. Why? Because like all Web sites, it becomes cluttered. Facebook is looking to add tabs to contain all your customization. The facelift for Facebook is set to debut in June.
Emma and Ethan were the most popular first names chosen by Oklahoma parents in 2007, according to the Social Security Administration. Now, before you read the story on NewsOK, you can take a simple little quiz of baby names on NewsOK.com. See if you can guess the most popular names in America.
In sports, the San Antonio Spurs beat the New orleans Hornets last night. The NBA playoffs are down to the Final Four – Pistons vs. Celtics, game 1 tonight. And Lakers Spurs, game 1 tomorrow night.
Tonight is part one of the two night American Idol finale. David Archuleta, a 17 year old from Utah vs. David Cook, a 25 year old from Missouri, who has spent time in Tulsa and so Oklahomans like to claim him. Tune in at 7 pm tonight on Fox.
We have questions today:
Is a star Sooner staying or leaving? What is America’s favorite book? Which star was booted from Dancing with the Stars?
3 Things You Should Know Today.
The Oklahoman’s Scott Wright is reporting it appears Blake Griffin’s decision day has arrived. The Oklahoma freshman and coach Jeff Capel have scheduled a news conference at Lloyd Noble Center for 1 p.m. today where it is expected that Griffin will announce his intentions for next basketball season.
We will have updates throughout today on NewsOK. Damon Fontenot will fille a video report on NewsOK.tv as well.
The most popular book is the Bible, according to a new survey. It came in first in a Harris Poll of nearly 2,513 adults but the second choice in the survey was not as clear cut. Men chose J.R.R. Tolkien’s “The Lord of the Rings” and women selected Margaret Mitchell’s “Gone With the Wind” as their second-favorite book. But the second choice for 18- to 31-year-olds was J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series, while 32- to 43-year-olds named Stephen King’s “The Stand” and Dan Brown’s “Angels and Demons.”
Last place became last dance for Adam Carolla on “Dancing With the Stars.” The 43-year-old comedian and his professional partner, two-time champ Julianne Hough, were eliminated from the ABC dance-off during Tuesday’s results show.
Teacher abuse at an OKC school? A little girl burned in her race car. One Shining Moment in basketball. 3 Things You Should Know today.
First, North Highland teachers’ words are worrying some metro parents. The Oklahoman’s Wendy Kleinman reports parents Louis and Kesha Bell say they’ve been talking to officials at North Highland Math and Science Academy and Oklahoma City district administrators to no avail since December about verbal abuse of children. The couple appealed again to school board members at last night’s meeting. The district is investigating. The parents sent audio recorders with their children to the school. Wendy Kleinman spent hours this weekend going over those tapes. You can learn more in Wendy’s story and in Tanner Herriott’s video on NewsOK.
This story is simply terrible. I covered State Fair Speedway for The Oklahoman for two years. The racing community I’m sure sends its best this week to Harli White. The 12 year old’s sprint car burst into flames on the fourth turn of the I-44 Speedway at SW 149 Street on Saturday. She was trapped inside in her first race. She remains hospitalized at Shriners’ Burn Hospital for Children in Galveston, Texas, recovering from one of many surgeries she will have to undergo in the next few weeks. Again, our best wishes go out to the White family.
For those basketball fans who enjoy CBS’s tournament ending package called One Shining Moment, well you probably missed it last night in the OKC viewing area due to storm coverage. However, we have provided a link to Luther Vandross. Kansas beat Memphis in overtime to win the NCAA basketball tournament.
3 Things You Should Know on this Friday, April 4.
The National Weather Service says an unknown number of people were injured when a tornado swept through the Little Rock, Arkansas, area last night. At the North Little Rock Airport, the tornado destroyed a hangar and several small planes and left several others flipped over onto their wings.
The second thing you should know: here’s why groceries could cost more soon: Corn prices jumped to a record $6 a bushel Thursday, driven up by an expected supply shortfall that will only add to Americans’ growing grocery bill and further squeeze struggling ethanol producers.
Want some good news? NewsOKtv’s Damon Fontenot reports it was a dramatic debut for the RedHawks in their season opener last night at the Bricktown Ballpark. Oklahoma battled back from an early deficit to beat Memphis 4-3 in extra innings.
More good news, The Sports Animal’s Jim Traber is recovering from diverticulitis, that’s an intestinal disorder. Read Mel Bracht’s account in today’s sports section. Traber has been in the hospital recovering from emergency surgery, and was lucky the attack occurred at home and not driving to Kansas City for the Big 12 tournament.
Expect Partly cloudy in the morning before clearing. Highs in the lower 60s. Northerly winds 10 to 15 mph. On Saturday, Sunny. Highs about 70. And windy. Of course.