Oklahoma State wins first national title in football ... 71 years later

Seven decades after Oklahoma State swept through the 1945 season undefeated, a national coaches organization has retroactively named that team as national champions.

The American Football Coaches Assn. made the announcement Thursday as part of its effort to reexamine more than a quarter-century of college football before the creation of the coaches’ poll in 1950.

“After gathering all the pertinent information and doing our due diligence, it is the pleasure of our Blue Ribbon Commission of coaches to officially recognize Oklahoma State’s 1945 championship season with the AFCA Coaches’ Trophy,” said Todd Berry, the association’s executive director.

Though coaches in 1945 weren't yet voting for the best teams, there were other polls and ranking systems. The Associated Press Poll that year had Army at No. 1 and Oklahoma State — which was then called Oklahoma A&M — at No. 5.

Though the school has dozens of national championships in other sports — it won the 1945 NCAA basketball tournament — this is the first title in football.

The AFCA panel, which is taking a look back at the 1922 to 1949 seasons, expects to name additional retroactive champions.

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