Sooners, Cowboys set for 205th all-time meeting

Tip-off for Monday's Bedlam showdown between Kevin Bookout and the Sooners and Joey Graham and the Cowboys is set for 8:05 p.m. CST at the Lloyd Noble Center. Graham leads the Cowboys with a 19 point per game average, while Bookout comes into tonight's matchup averaging 19 points and 10.3 in Big 12 play. Oklahoma holds a commanding lead over Oklahoma State in the all-time series by a 118-86 mark.

The Matchup
Oklahoma State comes into Monday night's Bedlam showdown at 14-2 and 4-1 in Big 12 play. Oklahoma, who is 15-2 overall and on a nine-game winning streak, is in a first place tie with Kansas at 4-0 in conference play. The game will be televised nationally on ESPN by announcers Ron Franklin and Fran Fraschilla. Tip-off is set for 8:05 p.m. (CST).

The Rankings
The Cowboys were ranked fifth in both the Associated Press and Coaches Top 25 Poll released last Monday. The Sooners checked in at No. 18 in the Associated Press and 21st in the Coaches Poll. This week's new rankings will be announced late Monday afternoon.

The Series
Oklahoma holds a commanding lead in the all-time series with OSU by a 118-86 mark. However, the Cowboys swept the series for the first time since 1998 last season with a 77-56 win in Stillwater and a 65-52 win in Norman. OU Head Coach Kelvin Sampson is 9-13 overall vs. Oklahoma State and 7-3 in Norman. OSU Head Coach Eddie Sutton is 18-12 against OU. Overall, the Sooners are 73-26 against the Cowboys in Norman.

About the Cowboys
Oklahoma State comes into Monday night's showdown on the heels of their 82-53 win over Baylor Saturday in Stillwater. The Cowboys began the season 9-0 before losing to Gonzaga, 78-75, in the All College Classic on Dec. 28 in Oklahoma City. OSU then won four straight before losing to Texas, 75-61, a last Monday in Austin.

The Cowboys, who have won by 10 points or more in each of their 14 wins, are expected to start four seniors (John Lucas, Joey Graham, Daniel Bobik and Ivan McFarlin) and one freshman (David Monds) against the Sooners. Lucas, a 5-11 point guard, and Graham, 6-7 forward, rank 1-2 in the Big 12 in scoring. Graham, a 6-7 forward, leads the way with a 19 point average, while Lucas checks in at 17.8 points per game.

OSU's other two starters, Bobik and McFarlin, were starters on last year's Final Four team along with Lucas and Graham. Bobik, a 6-5 guard who only averages 6.6 points per game, is a spot-shooter that plays tough defense. McFarlin, a 6-8 forward, averages 12 points and a team-high 7.1 rebounds. Over his career, McFarlin has participated in 114 wins, which ranks him third (behind Kansas point guard Aaron Miles and Syracuse center Craig Forth) among current NCAA starters.

The Cowboys' fifth starter, 6-8 forward David Monds, made his first career start against Baylor on Saturday. The sophomore only averages 1.1 points and 1.7 rebounds a game, but scored four points and grabbed four rebounds against the Bears.

Off the bench, the Cowboys give most of their minutes to a pair of seniors (Stephen Graham and Terrance Crawford) and talented freshman guard JamesOn Curry. Graham is a muscular 6-6 guard/forward who averages 8.9 points and 4.4 rebounds. Crawford, a 6-6 forward who is the Cowboys' only Oklahoman on the roster, is an athletic defender inside that averages 4.5 points and 4.3 rebounds.

Curry, who originally committed to North Carolina out of high school, ended up in Stillwater after the Tar Heels rescinded his scholarship offer after the the 6-2 guard was pleaded guilty on two charges of distribution of marijuana. Curry averages 6.1 points per game, but is coming off a 14-point effort against the Bears.

Sampson on Oklahoma State
"They're just so much different than we are. We've got a lot of first year kids and kids still trying to figure this thing out. If you look at their top six players, they're seniors and they've been through a lot of battles.

"I remember being like them. I remember going to the Final Four and then the next year everybody thought we were going to go back to the Final Four. I know how that team wins. They're the kind of team that rises to the ocassion. It will be a huge, huge challenge for this team.

"I've always thought the two best teams in the league would be O-State and Kansas. The thing that impresses you so much about O-State is they're so senior, so veteran."

Sooners Illustrated Top Stories