Trailing 39-29 at halftime, Duke didn't come out with a great start to the second half either, forcing coach Mike Krzyzewski to call a timeout 33 seconds in with the deficit up to 12.
Whatever the Hall of Fame coach said in that huddle worked because Shelden Williams, J.J. Redick and Daniel Ewing stepped up and the Blue Devils rallied to their fourth 8-0 start in the last five seasons.
Redick had 19 of his 26 points in the second half, turning a 1-for-7 effort from the field in the opening 20 minutes into 7-for-16 shooting for the game.
Ewing had 17 points, 12 in the second half.
Williams took over inside in the opening minutes of the second half, scoring seven points in a 10-2 run that brought the Blue Devils within 43-39 with 16:23 to play. Williams, a native of Forest Park, Okla., finished with 14 points and 13 rebounds.
Ewing and Redick missed only one of their first seven shots in the second half and Duke made nine of its first 12. The suddenly effective offense led to much better defense as well and Oklahoma (6-2) shot just 30 percent in the second half (9-for-30).
Taj Gray had 18 points and 12 rebounds for the Sooners, whose only other loss was to No. 18 Washington in the semifinals of the Great Alaska Shootout. Kevin Bookout added 17 points, but was 2-for-10 from the field in the second half.
Duke had poor starts in its last two games - Loyola of Chicago and Illinois-Chicago - both the Blue Devils took control in the first half of those home games.
Duke took its first lead against the Sooners since 8-7 when Redick hit a 3 with 11:12 to play that made it 53-52. That was part of an 11-2 run, during which he had the first nine points - a three-point play on a nice spin move and two 3s. Ewing capped it with a basket that made it 58-52 with 9:35 left.
Redick's fourth and last 3 of the game gave Duke a 70-61 lead with 2:56 to play.
Redick was 8-for-9 from the free throw line, though the rest of the Blue Devils were just 12-for-21.
Duke's Shavlik Randolph, who came in averaging 7.3 points and 5.7 rebounds, had no points and a rebound, fouling out in 14 minutes.
Duke is 4-0 all-time against Oklahoma with all the game played since 1986.