OU-Kansas Hoops Preview

NORMAN, Okla. -- Sooners Illustrated breaks down the matchup between OU and Kansas Saturday afternoon at Lloyd Noble Center.


The Sooners (12-15, 4-9 Big 12) are going on a streak similar to the one they finished the year on last season, and it's not a good one. OU has lost six consecutive contests after winning four straight prior to that. The Jayhawks, on the other hand, are one of the nation's best teams with a No. 2 national ranking and just a pair of losses in 2010-11. They are coming off a throttling victory over Oklahoma State. OU is trying to keep away from the conference cellar, while Kansas is trying to keep pace with Texas, trailing the Longhorns by just one game in the standings.

Sooner Notes:

--Kansas leads the all-time series 135-64, including a 45-40 advantage in Norman, and is the only program in the conference with a winning record over OU.

--The Sooners are 11-3 at home this year, with a pair of losses to ranked teams in Texas and Texas A&M, as well as a one-point decision to Nebraska.

--Free throw production has went down big time since the start of the losing streak. In the past six games, OU has averaged just 15.5 attempts per game, while managing 26.5 in the four before that.

--Guard Steven Pledger is a pivotal component of OU's offensive attack, and it's evidenced by the fact that he's netting 16.2 points per contest in victories and just 8.1 points per game in its losses.

Looking at the Jayhawks:

--They boast the No. 2 ESPN/USA Today and No. 3 AP rankings and arrive with 26-2 overall record and 11-2 mark in the Big 12.

--The ‘Hawks are scoring a league-high 83.2 points per game in conference play with their Big 12 best 51.7 percent shooting from the field.

--They also have one of the most formidable defenses in the Big 12, limiting opponents to 42.6 percent shooting, and they rebound really well, with a plus-5.8 margin.

--Forward Marcus Morris leads three players in double figures with his 17.1 points per game, good for sixth in the Big 12. He also posts averages of 6.9 boards and 1.4 assists per game and shoots 60.3 percent from the field, leading the conference there.

--Head coach Bill Self is in his eighth year as Kansas' head coach with a 228-45 record.

Projected Starters:


F Andrew Fitzgerald (6-8, 231, So., 13.3 ppg, 5.2 rpg)

G Steven Pledger (6-4, 212, So, 11.4 ppg. 2.2 apg)

G Carl Blair (6-2, 209, So., 7.6 ppg, 4.4 apg)

G Cameron Clark (6-6, 189, Fr., 9.6 ppg, 4.6 rpg)

G Cade Davis (6-5, 209, Sr., 13.0 ppg, 5.2 rpg)


F Markieff Morris (6-10, 245, Jr., 13.4 ppg, 8.4 rpg)

F Marcus Morris (6-9, 235, Jr., 17.1 ppg. 6.9 apg)

G Brady Morningstar (6-4, 185, Sr., 6.4 ppg, 3.1 apg)

G Tyrel Reed (6-3, 193, Sr., 9.8 ppg, 2.9 rpg)

G Elijah Johnson (6-5, 209, Sr., 13.0 ppg, 5.2 rpg)

Sooners Illustrated's Take:

The Sooners are just way outmatched in this contest between a potential Final Four team and one that is unlikely to make any tournament. They will more than likely lose by double figures. However, if they can put together a really solid defensive performance and get huge scoring production from three or four, perhaps all five of their starters, this is the only way the Sooners will have a chance.

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