The Oklahoma Thunder are a minor league American football team based in Tulsa, Oklahoma.The Thunder compete in the Central Division of the new World Football League. Players include Bacone College alumni, former major college standouts, and former NFL players including Willie Ponder. The team was founded by league owner James "Sonny" Ashford in 2007 and the team's name pre-dates the relocation of the Seattle Supersonics to Oklahoma City to become the Oklahoma City Thunder. The team's official colors are silver and blue. The team's cheerleaders are known as the Thunder Cats. Through three seasons, the team is undefeated with a 40–0 record and three consecutive league championships.
In their 2008 inaugural season, the Oklahoma Thunder finished with a perfect 16–0 regular season record under head coach Bruce Madden. After beating the previously undefeated Texas Bulldogs 84-6 in the semi-final game,the Thunder rolled to 29–6 victory over the Austin Gamebreakers in World Bowl II on October 18, 2008, at Independence Stadium in Shreveport, Louisiana.(The new minor-league WFL retained the numbering from the original 1970s WFL.) After the game, Thunder head coach Bruce Madden was presented the WFL Coach of the Year Award and linebacker Joey Crawford was named WFL Player of the Year.
In 2009, the team posted another unbeaten record and went on to defeat the Dallas Diesel 41–12 in World Bowl III on August 29, 2009, at LaFortune Stadium in Tulsa.
The Team ended the season with several award winners and many players making all-star game appearances. During the Hall of Fame ceremony in Las Vegas, Thunder players received the following awards: QB Rico Watkins took home Quarterback of the Year, Offensive Player of the Year, and Overall Player of the Year. Coach Bruce Madden took home Coach of the Year. Corey Curtis won Offensive Lineman of the Year. Jeremy Gray won Defensive Player of the Year and Linebacker of the Year. T.J. Covington took home the Defensive Back of the Year award. There awards were not just for the Thunder team or the WFL, but the entire minor league football community.
Fifteen Thunder players were named to the All-WFL Team in late-July 2010, more than any other team in the league. Quarterback Rico Watkins, wide receivers Marcus Pugh and Michael Swalley, tight end Clayton Froese, offensive lineman Jeremy Gray, defensive end C.B. Boyd, defensive tackle Aaron Littell, linebackers Joey Crawford and Jeremy Nethon, defensive back Quito Lightbourne, and special teams player Eli Kennard were all named to the first team. The second team included Thunder offensive linemen Josh Toops and Corey Curtis, defensive tackle Calvin Wychoff, defensive back Kurtis Dawson, and kicker Brandon Hawley.
After a 10–0 regular season in 2010 and a playoff win over the Fort Worth, Texas-based Eagle Mountain Marauders, the Thunder competed in their third straight World Bowl on July 31, 2010, where they faced the Des Moines Blaze at the East Tulsa Sports Complex in Tulsa, Oklahoma. The Thunder defeated the Blaze, 52–10, to claim their third consecutive league championship and extend their unbeaten streak to 40 games. Joey Crawford was named World Bowl MVP, his second such honor.