Mixon was suspended for a year for the assault, went through the criminal process and returned to the team for the 2015 season as a redshirt freshman. He since has emerged as one of the most effective all-purpose threats in the country.
Bob Stoops and the Oklahoma administration have stood up for Mixon throughout this process, promoting the growth he's experienced since making that poor decision during his first months on campus in Norman, Oklahoma. Though extremely late, Mixon apologized to the victim, first in a letter and then in a lengthy press conference in which, for the first time, he took full responsibility for his actions.
ESPN's Brent Musburger got those messages and tried to relay them to the public during the broadcast of the Sugar Bowl.
I rewound this to make sure I wasn't being too tough on Brent. Nope. It's even worse the second time. This is embarrassing. pic.twitter.com/QAoikxck9G— Mike Finger (@mikefinger) January 3, 2017
Those comments obviously received a bit of attention on Twitter as Musburger caught criticism for his handling of the conversation. What followed was one of the first times that a Hall of Fame announcer has addressed his Twitter critics on the air. It was as strange as it sounds.
While this is most likely Musburger struggling to articulate his point while doing so in a brief fashion, he certainly did not address the details of the situation, which was taken by some as if the announcer was only praising Mixon for making the most of a second chance and not criticizing Mixon's transgression.
There would be other references to the Mixon incident. First, Auburn fans in attendance chanted "He - hits - wom-en" late in the first half, leading Mixon and quarterback Baker Mayfield to wave their arms.
Second, after a Mixon touchdown, his teammates' celebration was re-examined. Were his teammates punching him in celebration like a hard hit on the pads and missed or was this acting out a knockout punch? If it's the latter, it's really bad optics for the situation.
OU players fake punching Mixon 🤔 https://t.co/UvkL3HLqWb— Heath Heidtke (@HeathHeidtke) January 3, 2017
It was a strange night all-around in the Sugar Bowl, considering Mixon was a game-changer for Oklahoma and had an argument to be MVP of the game, which was won by Mayfield.