Steve Sisney, The Oklahoman
Throw in some bad officiating (what's new?), and it was generally a game we would like to forget.
For me, this game revolved around a quote and 1 stat.
From Pistols Firing's preview of Bedlam, "Three things to watch..."
"2. Push from the inside - There’s not much risk of OU killing you with the three (260th in the country in 3P%) so if you can push the ball out to their guards, you can devastate them offensively. They use two big men — Romero Osby and Amath M’Baye — each on 24% of their possessions. The Cowboys haven’t…um…been effective in the interior on defense but if they are today we can expect a mini-rout."
I think you know what's coming next.
These are NOT OSU's 3pt shooting stats.
Now this is not to call out Kyle for not knowing what he is talking about. It is to show that if you do exactly what you should do, sometimes it doesn't work out.
OU came out fast and aggressive, and the Cowboys couldn't get their legs under them until they were already down 14. Finally, trailing 45-31 with 17:49 left to play, Ford decided to dial up the pressure. What happened over the next 8 minutes made everyone wonder why the hell this didn't happen right from the start. OSU picked up full court pressure and began relentlessly attacking the goal, going on a 19-7 run. OU cooperated, going cold on the offensive end. During that time, the Cowboys made:
- 4 layups/dunks
- 9 FT's
- 1 jump shot
- no 3pt shots
- Points in the paint...even at 26;
- Fast break points...OU, 7-3. Neither team did anything here, and the Sooner's points came early in the game;
- Bench scoring...OSU, 21-11. All but 1 FT came from Cobbins and Forte. I REALLY hope Brian Williams comes back SOON;
- Rebounds...OU, 37-36. OSU had 2 more offensive boards (12-10);
- Non 3pt shooting...OSU 45.7% (55% in 2nd half); OU 37.8% (35.3% in 2nd half); and that was with at least 5-6 point blank misses for the Cowboys;
- 2nd half 3pt FG's...OU, 5-9...OSU, 0-9. Both teams made 11 FG's in the 2nd half, but 45.5% of the Sooner's made shots were 3's, and you can add 1 more for the 3 FT gift Pledger cashed in. Count those FT's, and that's 18 points the Cowboys had to make up somewhere else JUST IN THE 2ND HALF;
- OU isn't as sucky from behind the arc as you might think. The Sooners have 3 players averaging 23+ minutes per game that collectively shoot 36.8% from deep (4.3 of 11.6 per game), which means they have options;
- OSU isn't as good. The Cowboys have only 2 players that have more than 5 attempts that are shooting 30+% (Forte & Brown). Of the 5 players averaging 23+ minutes per game, 4 of them average 2+ attempts each per game. If you take away Forte, the other three (Smart/Brown/Nash) average 29.3% from behind the arc. So Forte averages 2.4 made on 6.3 attempts per game. The other three average 2.9 made on 10 attempts per game.
- There were a couple of possessions for Nash in the 2nd half where I went "WOW...now that's the guy I expect to see." Like I said, a couple of possessions.
- Jurick...If I see him roaming around anywhere more than 10 feet from the basket, I'm going to kick in the TV. Ten feet and in, he is actually an offensive threat. Well, maybe just an option, but I'll take it.
- That was Smart's worst game of the season.
- My favorite lineup? Smart/Brown/Forte/maybe Nash/anyone else. Best shooters with best chance to spread the floor and make room to attack the rim.
- Pistols Firing, and others, have continuously said this team should attack first, shoot 3's second. They do exactly the opposite, and that's on the coach.
- Speaking of coach, the Sooners have a really good one. That was painfully evident yesterday.
- Is anyone else as anxious as I am to get Brian Williams back?
- Pending Williams return and his ability to be effective, both offensively and defensively, this current squad will struggle to make the tournament. Definite NIT material, but will be NCAA bubble team unless something changes. Just not good enough on offense. This was not the only game they will lose that they shouldn't have lost.
- This is a decent defensive team. OU just happened to be unconscious from 3, and who would have thought OSU would go 0-fer in the 2nd half.
- How ironic that the coach that deserved it had to struggle with contract negotiations and an extension, while the one who did nothing to deserve it got an extension without so much as a whimper. Now the one we want annually flirts with other suitors in order to get what he wants here, and the one we would like to ditch is stuck here because it's too expensive to let him go. I'm looking at you, Mr. Holder.