Rose, the ballyhooed freshman point guard from Memphis, scored a game-high 17 points, seven of which came in a decisive stretch in the second half as the Tigers held off the Sooners 63-53.
Third-ranked Memphis (3-0) will play Connectict at 7:30 p.m. Friday for the 2K Sports College Hoops Classic championship. Connecticut defeated Gardner-Webb, Oklahoma's opponent at 5:30 p.m. Friday, in the other semifinal.
Oklahoma (2-1) had trouble scoring consistently against the athletic Tigers, shooting 37.5 percent from the field. Oklahoma was only 4-of-15 (26.7 percent) from beyond the arc. They also committed 18 turnovers.
Still, after trailing by 10 points at halftime, the Sooners were able to pull within 45-40 with 12 minutes to play when Austin Johnson threw down a fastbreak dunk.
But that was it for the Sooners as Memphis answered with a 10-3 run, the final seven coming from Rose.
The Oklahoma defense limited Memphis to 22-of-59 (.373) shooting and forced 17 turnovers. However, the offense was never able to sustain a run.
A big factor in that was Memphis forward Joey Dorsey, who finished with nine points, 12 rebounds and five big blocks. Dorsey had not played in the Tigers' first two games due to a shoulder injury.
Chris Douglas-Roberts added 12 for the Tigers.
Oklahoma's Blake Griffin, the game's other touted freshman, was held to eight points on 3-of-9 shooting. He added a team-high nine boards.
Longar Longar led the Sooners in scoring for the second straight game. He had 13 points to go with his seven rebounds. Johnson came off the bench to score nine for the Sooners.