Scott Sutton: 'Sickening' to coach against brother
BY JIMMIE TRAMEL World Sports Writer
Sunday, February 03, 2013
2/03/13 at 6:46 AM
Oral Roberts basketball coach Scott Sutton was asked this question: What victory in your career made you feel the worst?
He didn't hesitate beforing answering.
"Beating Oklahoma State," he said. "That was miserable."
The Harbaugh brothers, John and Jim, will coach against each other in Super Bowl XLVII. Victory will come at the expense of a family member. Can you imagine what that's like?
The Sutton brothers, Scott and Sean, don't have to imagine. They have been there, done that, on a much smaller stage.
On Dec. 20, 2007, Sean was the head coach at OSU and Scott was ORU's coach when their teams squared off at the All-College Classic in Oklahoma City. The Golden Eagles beat the Cowboys 74-59.
"That wasn't fun at all," said the winning coach.
"You ought to try being on the other end of it," added Sean.
The brothers had no great desire to coach against each other, but the game was arranged because Sean did the ORU program a favor, according to Scott. The Golden Eagles were in the midst of building a program and they were having a hard time getting TV exposure. ESPN agreed to televise the battle of brothers, if everyone was on board with the idea, so the Suttons signed off on a game they would come to regret.
"It was a sickening feeling afterward, to be honest," Scott said. "It was strange emotions. I was really happy for our guys and I knew it was a big win for our program, but I just felt sick for Sean and his team."
Just a game? Sure.
"But it's your livelihood and it's your job," Scott said, adding that his father - former Oklahoma State coach Eddie Sutton - caught a lot of heat for being reluctant to play teams coached by his former assistants.
"And I think he was right on cue," Scott said. "It's not fun having to go against somebody you really care for."
Even though ORU collected one of many significant scalps in the Scott Sutton era and got media attention for beating the Cowboys, Scott said this week that the game "wasn't worth it for me."
Can the Suttons relate to what the Harbaughs might be going through? Their situation is different, according to Scott, because the Harbaughs are at the pinnacle of their profession and one of them is going to become a Super Bowl champion Sunday.
"I assume their relationship is really good, just like with most brothers, and whatever happens is not going to affect their relationship," he said.
Sean and Scott Sutton now can share in victories. Sean is a third-year member of the ORU coaching staff.
Original Print Headline: Suttons can relate to Harbaughs
Jimmie Tramel 918-581-8389
ORU head coach Scott Sutton (right) said a 2007 win over Oklahoma State over brother Sean (left) made him feel "miserable." CORY YOUNG/ Tulsa World file