Contact Us
Make My Homepage

What Is an Oklahoma Sooner Anyway?

Ronald Martinez, Getty Images

This weekend, the No. 6-ranked Oklahoma Sooners face off against the No. 15 Kansas State Wildcats, and it got us wondering: What exactly is a Sooner anyway? So we looked it up …

During the 19th century, Native American tribes inhabited Oklahoma after they were chased away from the eastern U.S. At one point, as much as 8 percent of the state’s population was Native American.

So how’d it become the Sooner State? As new settlers hoped to push out the Native Americans and claim their land, they led government-sponsored “land rushes” toward the end of the 19th century. Settlers made claims on plots of land, but some did so too soon—before the official start of the rush—and they would come to be known as “Sooners.”

The most famous land rush took place on April 22, 1889, when people from around the world came to Oklahoma. According to legend, the event began when a military officer fired his pistol. Wagons full of people then surged forward looking for a new life. Even with college athletics still far away, the competitive environment had already reached Oklahoma.

Best of 1280 KSLI

Recommended For You

Best of the Web

It appears that you already have an account created within our VIP network of sites on . To keep your personal information safe, we need to verify that it's really you. To activate your account, please confirm your password. When you have confirmed your password, you will be able to log in through Facebook on both sites.

Forgot your password?

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

It appears that you already have an account on this site associated with . To connect your existing account just click on the account activation button below. You will maintain your existing VIP profile. After you do this, you will be able to always log in to using your original account information.

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

Please fill out the information below to help us provide you a better experience.

(Forgot your password?)

Not a member? Sign up here

Sign up for KSLI Country Club quickly by connecting your Facebook account. It's just as secure and no password to remember!

Sign up to have exclusive KSLI Country Club contests, events, coupons, presales, and much more delivered to you for FREE.