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Bob Stoops bringing the Air Raid to the XFL

He's a born and bred defensive guy, but it's fair to say Bob Stoops is an offensive visionary. Or, at least he has a vision for offensive visionaries.

Stoops brought the Air Raid to the Heartland when, upon getting the Oklahoma head job in 1999, he hired an unknown named Mike Leach as his offensive coordinator. Leach would last just a season at Oklahoma before becoming the head coach at Texas Tech, but the damage had been done by that point. The Big 12 was infected with the Air Raid virus, and 20 years later it's spread to every corner of the sport.

Fifteen years later, Stoops' offense needed a shot in the arm, so he went to the second generation of the Air Raid and hired East Carolina offensive coordinator Lincoln Riley to do the same at Oklahoma. That hire was such a success that, one season later, Stoops stepped away and handed the keys to Riley, who has since gone 24-4 with two College Football Playoff appearances, two Big 12 championships, two Heisman trophies and two No. 1 picks by two different quarterbacks in his two seasons as head coach.

Now, as head coach of the XFL's Dallas franchise, Stoops is going back to where the Air Raid started.

Mumme and Leach more or less invented the Air Raid when the pair served as head coach and offensive coordinator at Iowa Wesleyan from 1989-91 but, like many artists who came along before their time, Mumme has not enjoyed the same riches as those who followed him. He was a successful head coach at Iowa Wesleyan and Valdosta State, but went just 20-26 as Kentucky's head coach from 1997-00.

He's bounced around from there, depositing head coaching stints at Southeastern Louisiana, New Mexico State, McMurry and Belhaven. He spent 2018 as the offensive coordinator at Jackson State and agreed to do the same for the AAF's Memphis Express but left the team before the season began.

At age 67, Mumme returns to his native Texan to join forces with the ex-defensive coordinator who's as responsible for his invention's success as any other individual.

Life sometimes has a funny way of going full circle, doesn't it?