|Cameron Clark is averaging 14.3 points over the last three games|
|Oklahoma (14-13, 4-11) at No. 13/14 Baylor (23-5, 10-5)|
|Date & Tip Time||Saturday, Feb. 25, at 12:47 p.m. CT|
|Location||Waco, Texas | Ferrell Center|
|Tickets||OU Athletics Ticket Office|
Big 12 Network
|Radio|| Sooner Radio Network
KOKC 1520 AM in Oklahoma City
KTBZ 1430 AM in Tulsa
|Game Info||Game Notes (PDF)|
Tied for eighth place in the Big 12 race, Oklahoma (14-13, 4-11) plays at No. 13/14 Baylor (23-5, 10-5) on Saturday at 12:47 p.m. CT. The Sooners, who broke a six-game losing streak by beating Oklahoma State 77-64 on Wednesday, are 1-6 in Big 12 road games (lone win at Kansas State). The Bears, tied for third place in the league, are 6-5 in their last 11 games after a 17-0 start to the season. They are 4-3 in conference home games.
ON THE AIR
Saturday's contest will air on the Sooner Radio Network (KOKC AM 1520 in Oklahoma City; KTBZ AM 1430 in Tulsa) with Toby Rowland and Mike Houck announcing. The game will be televised by the Big 12 Network (KOCB Ch. 34 in OKC; KTUL Ch. 8 in Tulsa; ESPN Full Court) with Brad Sham and Dan Hughes calling the action.
SIX THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW
Oklahoma holds a 37-9 all-time advantage over Baylor and is 16-4 against the Bears in Waco. However, the Sooners have lost each of the last two seasons there (74-61 last year).
Baylor posted a 77-65 win over OU in Norman on Jan. 24. The Bears shot .540 from the field, .500 (9-for-18) from 3-point range and .824 (14-for-17) from the free throw line. Perry Jones III led Baylor with 21 points and 12 rebounds.
A win Saturday would be the OU's 15th this season, surpassing last year's 14.
In its four Big 12 wins, Oklahoma has held opponents to .376 field goal shooting. In OU's 11 Big 12 losses, opponents are shooting .496 from the field.
After combining to average 7.8 points over OU's first 12 conference games, the sophomore duo of Cameron Clark (14.3) and Tyler Neal (9.0) is averaging 23.3 points over the last three outings on a combined .569 shooting.
The Big 12's leader in assists (6.1 apg), junior Sam Grooms has led OU in the category in each of the last 12 games and in 21 of 27 contests on the year.
Since posting a 17-0 record to start the season and climbing to No. 3 in the national polls (both school bests), No. 13/14 Baylor is 6-5 in its last 11 games with losses in three of its last five outings. The Bears, who are 4-3 in conference home games, are coming off a 77-72 road win over Texas on Monday in which they were outshot .481 to .400. Two of their home defeats came by one point (Missouri and Kansas State) while the other was by 14 (Kansas).
One of the top offensive teams in the league, Baylor ranks third in points per game (74.6), third in field goal percentage (.475), first in 3-point field goal percentage (.392) and third in free throw percentage (.744). On the other end of the floor, the Bears rank second in the league in blocked shots (5.1 per game) and steals (8.0 per contest).
Sophomore forward Perry Jones III leads four Baylor players averaging double figures in points. He averages 13.3 points and a team-high-tying 7.2 rebounds per game, and is shooting .500 from the field. Over the last five games, however, the Preseason Big 12 Player of the Year has been held to an average of 8.2 points (on .302 shooting) and 4.8 rebounds.
Junior guard Pierre Jackson, last season's national junior college player of the year, averages 12.5 points per outing and ranks second in the Big 12 with his 5.9 assists and 1.7 steals a contest. He is coming off a 25-point outing at Texas and has canned 48 treys on the year (shooting .436 from deep).
Senior forward Quincy Acy is coming off a 22-point, career-high 16-rebound effort against Texas. On the year, Acy is averaging 12.5 points, 7.3 boards and a team-high 2.1 blocked shots (ranks third in Big 12). He is shooting a team-best .582 from the field.
Scott Drew is in his ninth year as Baylor's head coach and owns a 150-121 (.554) record at the school.
OU-BAYLOR SERIES HISTORY
Oklahoma owns a 37-9 series advantage against Baylor and has won 32 of the last 36 meetings (included a streak of 30 straight wins that was snapped two years ago). The Sooners possess a 16-4 series lead in games played in Waco, but have lost two straight there after 16 consecutive wins. OU is 28-4 against the Bears since the inception of the Big 12 Conference (13-2 at the Ferrell Center)
JAN. 24 VS. THE BEARS
Oklahoma trailed No. 6 Baylor by just two, 62-60, but was outscored 13-5 over the final four minutes of a 77-65 home loss on Jan. 24. The Bears shot .540 from the field, .500 (9-for-18) from 3-point range and .824 (14-for-17) from the free throw line.
Baylor shot .640 from the field after halftime (16-for-25) and hit four of its five field goal attempts during its 13-5 game-ending run.
Baylor's win was just its fourth ever in Norman (against 18 losses) and just its second ever at Lloyd Noble Center (against 16 defeats).
Guard Steven Pledger led OU in scoring, finishing with 17 points on 7-for-15 field goal and 3-for-9 3-point shooting. He added six rebounds and four assists.
Forward Romero Osby finished with 16 points and a team-high 11 rebounds for his sixth double-double of the year. He added a pair of blocked shots and took three charges. Forward Andrew Fitzgerald scored in double figures for the 14th straight game, finishing with 13 points on 6-for-14 shooting. Guard Sam Grooms tallied seven points and seven assists without registering a turnover.
PLEDGER AMONG BIG 12'S OFFENSIVE LEADERS
After averaging 8.6 points and shooting .386 from the field and .345 from 3-point range over his first two seasons, junior guard Steven Pledger is averaging 16.8 points this year while shooting .471 from the field and .429 from long distance. Pledger ranks third in the Big 12 in 3-pointers per game (2.6), fourth in scoring, sixth in field goal percentage and 3-point field goal percentage, and eighth in free throw percentage (.827).
The Dec. 19 and Jan. 30 Big 12 Player of the Week, Pledger has scored in double figures in 23 of his 26 outings. He has scored at least 20 points seven times after doing it three times all of last year, and has netted at least 15 points on 10 other occasions.
Pledger has already made 40 more field goals (152) in 26 games this year than he did in 32 games last season (112). He has played 143 fewer minutes this season than last.
Pledger needs just 27 points to become the 38th player in OU history to score 1,000 in a career. Only 28 players in school history reached 1,000 points prior to their fourth playing year. He already ranks sixth at OU in career 3-point makes with 173.
MORE INDIVIDUAL PLAYER NOTES
Sophomore guard Cameron Clark has had his three best offensive performances in Big 12 play the last three games, registering 13 points versus Texas Feb. 14, 16 points (his most in 19 games) at Iowa State last Saturday and 14 points against Oklahoma State on Wednesday. Clark, who had been held to single-digit scoring in nine of OU's first 12 league games, is averaging 14.3 points on 20-for-35 (.571) shooting the last three outings. He is also averaging 5.3 rebounds during the stretch. A starter in 56 of his 59 career games, Clark is averaging 8.4 points on .410 shooting this season after averaging 9.3 points on .474 shooting last year.
Junior point guard Sam Grooms leads the Big 12 in assists (6.1 apg) and assist-to-turnover ratio (3.1; ranks fifth nationally). Only one other player in the Big 12 owns an assist-to-turnover ratio greater than 2.0 (Missouri's Phil Pressey; 2.4). Grooms has been on a tear of late, averaging 7.5 assists and just 1.8 turnovers (4.2 ratio) over the last 10 games. He has recorded at least five assists and no more than three turnovers in all 10 of those outings. Grooms, who has also scored in double figures three times over the last five games (he was held to single digits in his previous 10 games), has registered two or fewer turnovers 18 times in 27 contests, including nine of the last 11 outings. Only one Sooner in the last 15 years averaged more assists for an entire season than Grooms' current 6.1 average (6.9 by Terrell Everett in 2005-06).
Junior forward Romero Osby ranks second in the Big 12 with his 2.8 offensive rebounds per game and ranks third with his 7.7 overall boards per outing. He also ranks third with seven double-doubles. He has recorded at least 10 rebounds on nine occasions this year (his career high entering the season was eight rebounds). Osby, who is coming off a 16-point, 13-rebound effort against Oklahoma State, is averaging 14.5 points over the last 13 games and has scored at least nine points in all 13 (including a career-high 19 points at No. 8 Kansas on Feb. 1). His scoring surge can be partially attributed to his ability to get to the free throw line. Osby has 73 free throw attempts over the last 13 games (5.6 average), more than twice as many as the next highest total on the team during the span (35 attempts by Steven Pledger).
Junior forward Andrew Fitzgerald has scored in double figures in 18 of the last 22 games but not in any of the last three. After averaging 14.7 points on .506 shooting over a 19-game stretch, he is averaging 4.7 points on .273 (6-for-22) shooting the last three outings against Texas, Iowa State and Oklahoma State. Fitzgerald, who poured in a career-high 27 points Feb. 4 against Iowa State when he drained a career-high 11 field goals on 19 attempts, ranks second on the team in scoring (12.4 ppg) and rebounding (4.9 rpg). He has more offensive boards (67) than defensive (64).
Oklahoma plays at Texas on Wednesday at 8 p.m. CT. The game will be televised by ESPN2.