Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Sooners Hunting for Third Conference Win Against Bears

The bad news for OU is that Texas is coming to Norman on Saturday night. The good news for the Sooners is that they are at Baylor tonight. A win over the winless Bears would put the Sooners conference record one game over .500 at 3-2.

The Bears are 0-4 this season but a road win for the Sooners won’t come automatic. OU has struggled on the road this season, getting wiped by Villanova, struggling against SMU, and losing the conference opener at Nebraska.

However it was a road victory that may have turned the season around for the Sooners. A last second comeback, led by Terrell Everett, at Texas A&M seemed to give OU a boost of confidence. They followed up the win at A&M with a home win over Texas Tech and a win tonight would be the Sooners third in a row.

The big story coming out of Norman is the broken wrist of Kevin Bookout. Fortunately it is not his shooting wrist and he will be able to play with a soft cast. Bookout won’t be 100% but he will be on the floor.

Michael Neal will also be on the floor as well. OU’s sharp shooter is getting healthy and buried Tech with 4 three pointers down the stretch.

I like the Sooners chances tonight. In fact I am so confident in them that I made a lunch bet, at Ron’s Hamburgers, with my good friend DG. I took OU and gave him Baylor and 10 points. I’m looking forward to a chili-cheese burger next week.

Sizing Up the Bears
F 20 Tim Bush (6-6, 235, Jr., 4.3 ppg, 2.0 rpg, 0.5 apg)
F 32 Tommy Swanson (6-10, 225, Sr., 1.5 ppg, 3.3 rpg, 0.3 apg)
C 15 Mamadou Diene (7-0, 240, Fr., 5.0 ppg, 7.0 rpg, 0.8 apg)
G 0 Curtis Jerrells (6-1, 200, Fr., 7.3 ppg, 4.3 rpg, 3.5 apg)
G 14 Aaron Bruce (6-3, 195, So., 10.5 ppg, 3.0 rpg, 3.0 apg)

Sophomore guard Aaron Bruce is the only Bear who averages double figures in points (10.5). Bruce has made nine 3-pointers on 28 attempts (.321) and also averages 3.0 rebounds and 3.0 assists in a team-high 31.8 minutes a game. Freshman guards Henry Dugat (has not started) and Curtis Jerrells (has started all four games) are scoring 8.8 and 7.3 points a game, respectively. Jerrells also averages 4.3 rebounds and a team-high 3.5 assists. A third freshman, forward Kevin Rogers, averages 6.8 points and 4.8 boards. Junior guard/forward Patrick Fields tallied 20 points Saturday versus Texas after scoring a total of five in Baylor’s first three games. Fields is now averaging 6.3 points a contest. He is 5-for-10 from 3-point territory (he was 5-for-6 against Texas).

Current Big 12 Standings

Texas 5-0 17-2
Colorado 3-2 13-3
Kansas State 3-2 12-4
Missouri 3-2 10-6
Oklahoma 2-2 11-4
Nebraska 2-2 12-5
Kansas 2-2 11-6
Texas A&M 2-3 12-4
Iowa State 2-3 12-6
Oklahoma State 2-3 12-7
Texas Tech 2-3 10-9
Baylor 0-4 0-4

Other Conference Games Tonight
Nebraska @ Colorado – The Buffalos got a huge road win at Oklahoma State on Saturday and has to follow it up with a home win tonight.
My Pick: Colorado

Iowa State @ Missouri – Both teams are coming off weekend losses and you would have to say that the Cyclones need this one bad.
My Pick: Missouri

Kansas @ Texas A&M – The season has turned for the worse for the Aggies who will be 2-4 in conference play after tonight.
My Pick: Kansas