The Sooners will head to Kansas City in a slump. A rather alarming slump in my opinion. A team that build a reputation for knocking off Top 10 opponents is now the loser of four consecutive games and not a single one of the victors was ranked within the Top 10. In fact, Kansas State wasn’t even ranked and, as I’ve constantly said, that may be the loss that hurts them the most.
I certainly don’t believe that the NCAA Tournament is in jeopardy for this team but I do think for sure that their mojo is. This team looks to have lost confidence. The talent and desire are certainly there but the confidence they once had that allowed them to bounce #9 Alabama out of the LNC has been lost somewhere.
Game Defining Moment
Oklahoma and Texas both came out swinging but the Sooners got a bit punch drunk just after the midway through the first half. That ended up being the most costly stretch of the game for the Sooners.
Trailing just 28-26, following an Elijah Harkless layup at the 8:12 mark of the first half, the Sooners seemed to put a lid on the basket. Texas took advantage of ten missed Oklahoma shots from the floor, and one missed free throw, to build a 10-point lead at the break. The Sooners went for more than five minutes without scoring while the Longhorns slowly and methodically built the double digit lead.
Where in the world has Kur Kuath been? We haven’t really seen him be a factor in a game since Morgantown but he nearly willed the Sooners back to victory just with his defensive presence.
We have to trust that Lon Kruger has a good reason for only playing him sparingly but if he can produce like this moving forward then he could be key to a March Madness run.
The Problem Child
Until Kuath checked in midway through the second half Oklahoma didn’t have an answer for Jericho Sims. The Texas big man had himself a night in leading the Longhorns to victory behind enemy lines. He finished the night with 16 points and 12 rebounds.
After Oklahoma’s bench suffered through a bad night against Oklahoma State on Monday, Alondes Williams out in 13 crucial points off the bench to keep the Sooners competitive. However, once again it was Austin Reaves coming through as the leading scorer with 16 points on a tough shooting night in which he went 4-for-12 from the floor.
It’s Big 12 Tournament time now for the Sooners. Oklahoma will wait until Saturday’s games are complete to find out what seed they will be in Kansas City.
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