No. 1: KU is deep
No other way to slice it. The Jayhawks are deep and freakishly talented. Once Bill Self helps them all find their role, they're going to be a national championship contender. They're so loaded that highly touted players like Andrew Wiggins and Joel Embiid can combine for 15 points, and it still doesn't matter. Freshman guard Wayne Selden received the greenlight from Self on Wednesday and took full advantage of it with 24 points and knocking down five 3-pointers.
No. 2: Clark has made that leap
Seems odd to say because Cameron Clark has been so consistent for OU in terms of scoring, but it just feels like it means a little more when it happens against the Jayhawks. He notched 32 points, and Self gave him credit as one of the best mid-range shooters in the country right now. He keeps defenders off balance because they're not sure if he's going to drive to the hole or pull up and shoot. He had to take that leadership mantle for this team to go anywhere, and he has done that.
No. 3: Bennett or Hornbeak must emerge
An excuse is there for sophomore guard Je'lon Hornbeak as he has missed significant time with that foot injury. In his two games back, he has played 25 minutes with two assists and zero points. It's good for Hornbeak to give Jordan Woodard a break at point guard, but Hornbeak is going to have to contribute offensively as well. D.J. Bennett looked lost at times against KU in not scoring in his four minutes of play. Even though Ryan Spangler was in huge foul trouble, Lon Kruger looked in another direction.
No. 4: Neal is providing a spark
Sometimes he can get a little overzealous in trying to drive and finish at the cup, but senior forward Tyler Neal is providing quality minutes and production off the bench. He scored 11 points against KU, registering double digits in each of OU's first two conference games. Neal was 2-of-2 from 3-point territory and also wasn't afraid to mix it up in the paint against KU's considerably bigger front court. Neal gets around 20 minutes per game, and he's making the most of them right now.
No. 5: Spangler taken out of his game
OU isn't very deep to begin with in the post and foul trouble can really cripple things for the Sooners as it did with Ryan Spangler against KU. He somehow managed to have four the team's seven assists but could only total four points and three rebounds in 23 minutes. Plagued with foul trouble, Spangler is almost an automatic double-double guy and has to be for OU so his limited production made a tough task that much tougher.
Up next: home vs. Iowa State at 11 a.m. CST Saturday.