March 10, 2011

 
  Danielle Robinson
 Big 12 Championship Semifinal 2: OU vs. Texas A&M
 Date  Friday, March 11, 2011 | 2:36 p.m
 Location  Kansas City, Mo. | Municipal Auditorium
 Tickets  Ticketmaster.com
 TV  Fox Sports Network
 COX Ch. 37/722 HD in Oklahoma City | COX Ch. 27/722 HD in Tulsa
 Radio  Sooner Radio Network 
 KOKC 1520 AM in Oklahoma City
 Webcast  None
 Live Stats  Big12Sports.com
 Game Info  Game Notes (PDF)

FRIDAY'S GAME PLAN
• Third-seeded Oklahoma earned a first-round bye and will play the winner of (6) Texas Tech and (11) Oklahoma State in the second round Wednesday, March 9, at approximately 7:30 p.m. at Municipal Auditorium in Kansas City, Mo.
• The game will be televised nationally on Fox Sports Net (COX Ch. 37/722 HD in Oklahoma City and Ch. 27/722 HD in Tulsa) with Brenda VanLengen and Debbie Antonelli calling the game.
• The Sooner Sports Network radio broadcast with Brian Brinkley will be on KOKC AM 1520 in Oklahoma City.

 Big 12 Championship Central | Bracket (PDF)

The Teams
• Oklahoma is ranked No. 21 in the Associated Press Poll and No. 20 in the USA Today/ESPN Coaches' Poll.
• Texas A&M is No. 8 in both polls.
• Oklahoma is 21-10 all-time in the Big 12 Championship, matching Iowa State for most tournament victories. OU is 8-3 in the second round, 6-1 in the semifinals and 4-2 in the championship game. The Sooners are 9-8 all-time at Municipal Auditorium.

The Coaches
• Sherri Coale is 334-153 (.686) in her 15th season at Oklahoma. She has been the Big 12 Coach of the Year four times.
• Texas A&M head coach Gary Blair is 181-78 (.699) in his eighth season in College Station and 589-241 (.710) in his 26th overall.

 Oklahoma Projected Starters
No.
 Name
Pos.
Ht.
Year
 2010-11 Statistics
13
 Danielle Robinson
G
5-9
Sr.
 18.4 ppg, 3.5 rpg, 4.8 apg
3
 Aaryn Ellenberg
G
5-7
Fr.
 16.7 ppg, 3.5 rpg
25
 Whitney Hand
G
6-1
So. (RS)
 11.1 ppg, 5.7 rpg
10
 Carlee Roethlisberger
F
6-1
Sr.
 6.8 ppg, 5.0 rpg
4
 Nicole Griffin
C
6-6
Fr.
 5.0 ppg, 3.5 rpg

PREVIEWING OKLAHOMA
The Sooners enter 2010-11 following back-to-back trips to the Final Four. OU returns eight letterwinners from the squad, including three starters, and introduces five newcomers. Oklahoma was picked by the league's coaches to finish third in the Big 12 Conference this season.

Preseason All-American Danielle Robinson leads the team after a standout junior season in which she averaged 16.8 points and 5.3 assists.

Redshirt sophomore Whitney Hand, the 2009 Big 12 Freshman of the Year who suffered an ACL injury five games into the 2009-10 season returned to action on Jan. 2.

The Sooners introduce five newcomers, including high school All-Americans Aaryn Ellenberg and Nicole Griffin.

20 for 2011
Oklahoma reached 20 wins for the sixth consecutive season. OU has recorded all 10 of Sherri Coale's 20-win seasons in the past 12 years and has 16 total in the program's history.

 
 Sooner to Watch 

Danielle Robinson | Sr. | Guard
The senior point guard was a unanimous selection to the All-Big 12 First Team, her third appearance, and Big 12 All-Defensive Team, a fourth time. Robinson is the Big 12's Iron Woman with a 136-game consecutive start streak.

   

PREVIEWING THE BIG 12 CHAMPIONSHIP
Third-seeded Oklahoma advanced to the semifinals of the 2011 Big 12 Championship with a 71-69 win over sixth-seeded Texas Tech on Wednesday. OU will face (2) Texas A&M Friday at 2:30 p.m.

The Sooners have a 21-10 record in the Big 12 Championship and have won a league record four tournament titles with the last coming in 2007. The Sooners were defeated by Texas A&M, 74-67, in the 2010 championship game.

OU owns a 26-17 all-time series lead over Texas A&M, but has lost four in a row to the Aggies.

What to watch for:
• Danielle Robinson is three assists and one steal shy of joining Nancy Lieberman and Dawn Staley as the third player to total 2,000 points, 700 assists and 300 steals in a career.
• Robinson will make her 137th consecutive start in her 138th game Friday. She trails Caton Hill, who had 139 and 140, respectively, for the OU and Big 12 records.
• Aaryn Ellenberg is two 3-pointers shy of matching OU's single season record of 88 set by Erin Higgins in 2005-06.
• Whitney Hand has had seven assists in each of the last two games, a career-high figure.

Robinson, Ellenberg Earn All-Big 12 Honors
Oklahoma's Danielle Robinson and Aaryn Ellenberg were among the honorees as the All-Big 12 awards were announced.

Robinson was named to the All-Big 12 First Team for the third straight season and completed her career as a four-time member of the All-Defensive Team, voted this year as a unanimous selection to both squads by the coaches. The senior point guard was the league's fourth-leading scorer, averaging 18.4 points this season. Robinson was also among the Big 12's top five players in field goal percentage, assists and steals.

With 2,066 career points, Robinson is the ninth-leading scorer in the history of the Big 12 Conference with her next target former Sooner LaNeisha Caufield, who totaled 2,125 points. The San Jose, Calif., native is also seventh all-time in assists and sixth in steals.

Ellenberg was a unanimous selection to the Big 12's All-Freshman Team and an honorable mention to the All-Big 12 Team. The Las Vegas, Nev., native was the Big 12's leading freshmen scorer, averaging 16.7 points, and the top free throw shooter and fifth leading-rebounder among first-year players.

Hand a V Foundation Comeback Award Finalist
Oklahoma's Whitney Hand was named a finalist for the 11th Annual V Foundation Comeback Award Thursday.

The award is presented in memory of Jim Valvano, the late basketball coach and ESPN commentator, whose personal battle with cancer inspired the creation of The V Foundation.

The other finalists are Jessica Breland, North Carolina; Dawn Evans, James Madison; Jacki Gemelos, USC; Angel Goodrich, Kansas; Levi Knutson, Colorado; Andrea "Drey" Mingo, Purdue; Cory Pflieger, Rice; Thomas Robinson, Kansas; Kim Rodgers, Maryland; and Krystal Thomas, Duke.

Robinson an Academic All-American
Danielle Robinson was named to the Capital One Academic All-America Women's Basketball Team on Thursday, Feb. 24. She was the lone representative from the Big 12 Conference. The senior maintains a 3.50 GPA in sociology and is the seventh OU women's basketball player to have earned the distinction.

Robinson a Lowe's Senior CLASS Award Finalist
Oklahoma's Danielle Robinson is one of 10 finalists for the Lowe's Senior CLASS Award in women's basketball. An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School®, the Lowe's Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities. Fan voting counts for one-third of the total balloting and will be conducted online at www.seniorclasssaward.com and via Facebook through March 20.

Fans are able to vote for the Lowe's Senior CLASS Award nominees once each day through March 20. Click here to vote for Danielle Robinson.

Robinson Approaching Rare Benchmark
Danielle Robinson crossed the 2,000-point plateau against Colorado (Feb. 23) and is on pace to become the third top-level women's college basketball player, and the second in NCAA Division I competition, to total 2,000 points, 700 assists and 300 steals in a career. Previously, only Dawn Staley and Nancy Lieberman had reached those benchmarks. Robinson trails the milestones by three assists and one steal.

Players with 2,000 Points/700 Assists/300 Steals
Dawn Staley, Virginia (1989-92): 2,135 points, 729 assists, 454 steals
*Nancy Lieberman, Old Dominion (1977-80): 2,430 points, 961 assists, 512 steals

Players with 2,000 Points/600 Assists/300 Steals
Kim Perrott, Louisiana-Lafayette (1987-90): 2,157 points, 654 assists, 421 steals

*Pre-NCAA statistics

Oklahoma's Big 12 Dominance
No Big 12 team has won more games, titles or honors since the formation of the conference than Oklahoma.

Since the league was formed for the 1996-97 season, the Sooners have appeared in three Final Fours (2002, 2009, 2010) and have the most Big 12 victories and highest overall winning percentage (157-83, .656), all of which have come under Sherri Coale, a record four-time Big 12 Coach of the Year.

OU has won a league-high six regular-season conference crowns and four Big 12 Championship titles. Additionally, Sooners have won Big 12 Player of the Year six times, including Courtney Paris, who had a three-year streak taking the award. OU has also tallied five Big 12 Freshmen of the Year, including Danielle Robinson (2008) and Whitney Hand (2009).

Oklahoma's 11-game NCAA Championship appearance streak is also the longest active streak among Big 12 teams. Baylor, in second place, has been to the tournament the last seven years.

Ellenberg Sparking Beyond the Arc
The freshman is close to setting more Sooner records with her brilliant shooting this season. Ellenberg already has OU freshman records for 3-point makes and attempts, and the best single-season 3-point percentage overall for anyone with more than two made per game. Her 86 3-pointers made ranks third at OU and her 211 attempts is fifth. Her 40.8 3-point percentage would be eighth best if the season ended today.

NEXT UP
If OU advances to the championship game of the Big 12 Championship, it will be played Saturday, March 12, at 11 a.m. at Municipal Auditorium in Kansas City, Mo., and televised nationally on Fox Sports Net.