The following is an account from the 1965 Bedlam Game between Oklahoma and
Oklahoma State, played on December 4 at Owen Field in Norman. This excerpt is
from Intercollegiate Athletics,
written by Doris Dillinger for the OSU Centennial Histories Series.
It was fourth an two when Charlie Durkee and his holder, Happy Settle, sped onto
the field for a final shot at victory. Oklahoma State 17, OU 16!
Director Hiram Henry and the Orange and Black band pelted onto the field to
outline the shape of Old Central's "victory bell," ready once more to accept the
traditional OSU-OU game trophy, the bell clapper. Goal posts came down. Coaches
were tossed into showers. Well-wishers were jubilant. Cutchin left to attend the
Big Eight Athletic Conference and then begin recruiting. President Willham bowed
to the inevitable and agreed there would be no classes Monday.
Oklahoma band director Dr. Gene Braught (left) surrenders the Old Central bell
clapper - traditional Bedlam trophy - to OSU director Hiram Henry while OSU's
band formed a huge bell around the men. OSU prevailed 17-16 after a last-minute
field goal for the first win over OU since 1945.
The celebration in Stillwater raged through the weekend. Old Central's belfry
was considered unsafe now, and the returned clapper and bell were hung high in
the Student Union tower. The prairie school's bell wasn't majestic, but it
clanked for all it was worth. Car horns blared as impromptu parades clogged city
streets. A bonfire at the corner of Third and Washington Avenue lighted the sky.
Monday evening's rally and campus dance concluded the celebration. Tuesday
students straggled back to class.
Echoes of the Bell Clapper Classic lingered. The Board of Regents gave Coach
Cutchin a new five-year contract. The regents also announced plans for a new
athletic dormitory to house 240 men. Durkee's kicking shoe was gilded, to be
placed on permanent display. Garrison and Harper were All-Big Eight and
honorable mention All-American.
And the clapper was home.
Actually, it seemed two clappers were handed over by OU. Thinking the original
one was lost over the long years, OU had a second one made. Then the rightful
Old Central clapper popped up. But which was which? One was longer. Each was
hung within the bell in turn, and the original was determined when it matched
the inner dents made over the course of nearly seven decades. When later
remodeling was done, the bell and its victory clapper - by tradition rung only
when OU was defeated - were rehung atop Old Central.