10 Memorable Field House Games

Athletics Communications
By Athletics Communications
University of Oklahoma
NOVEMBER 03, 2013

NORMAN, Okla. -- The Field House series resumes Monday when the Oklahoma men's basketball team hosts Oklahoma Christian at 7 p.m. in an exhibition game inside McCasland Field House in the middle of the OU campus. All tickets are $5, except for OU students, who will be admitted free of charge. | BUY TICKETS

Opened in 1928, the OU Field House served as the Sooners’ home for 47 years, until Lloyd Noble Center opened in December 1975. Oklahoma’s all-time record in the building stands at 320-153 (.677). The Sooners won eight conference championships while playing in the facility (one Missouri Valley, six Big Six and one Big Seven). Head coaches who directed OU teams that played in the Field House were Hugh McDermott (11 seasons in the building), Bruce Drake (17), Doyle Parrack (7), Bob Stevens (5), John MacLeod (6) and Joe Ramsey (2). Drake’s 1938-39 and 1946-47 squads advanced to the NCAA semifinals and final, respectively. And some of the best players in school history flourished during the Field House era, including names such as Vic Holt and Gerald Tucker (national players of the year), and All-Americans Alvan Adams, Bud Browning, Thomas Churchill, Paul Courty, Drake, Les Lane, Jimmy McNatt, Allie Paine and Don Sidle.

Join us as we take a few moments to reflect on some of the most memorable games inside the OU Field House.

Field House OU KU 1928

An overflow crowd of 5,200 watched OU dismantle Kansas 45-19 in the first Field House game in 1928.

January 13, 1928 | OU 45, Kansas 19

Oklahoma delighted a packed house of 5,200 fans with a 45-19 Friday night drubbing of Kansas in the first game ever played at the OU Field House. It was the worst loss for the Jayhawks in seven seasons and went down as the second largest margin of defeat in the 38-year career of head coach Phog Allen. The Sooners, under the direction of head coach Hugh McDermott, went on to post a perfect 18-0 record that season to claim the Missouri Valley Conference title. The squad featured three players who earned All-America honors that year (Vic Holt) or the next (Thomas Churchill and Bruce Drake).

Jimmy McNatt 1939

Jimmy McNatt was an All-American on OU’s 1938-39 squad that advanced to the Final Four in the first-ever NCAA Tournament.

February 2, 1939 | OU 34 Oklahoma A&M 30

In a matchup that featured future Naismith Memorial Hall of Fame head coaches on both benches, Bruce Drake's Sooners downed Henry Iba's Oklahoma A&M Aggies in a tight 34-30 contest in front of a crowd of 5,500. It was the fourth win in five seasons for OU over A&M in Norman. The Sooners led 22-13 at halftime and had to halt an Oklahoma A&M rally in the second half. Garnett Corbin and Marvin Mesch led OU with eight points apiece. The Sooners, who went on the the Final Four that year in the first ever NCAA Tournament, featured two-time All-American Jimmy McNatt.

Drake 1947

Hall-of-Fame head coach Bruce Drake with the starters on his 1946-47 squad that reached the NCAA title game (players from left are Dick Reich, Gerald Tucker, Jack Landon, Allie Paine and Paul Courty).

January 10, 1947 | OU 50, Kansas 47

Kansas coach Phog Allen missed the game due to illness, and the Sooners took advantage for a 50-47 win over Kansas in front of a capacity crowd shortly after the new year. OU trailed by as many as 14 points in the first half but eventually got into an offensive rhythm and rallied for the important Big Six Conference victory. Paul Courty's 14 points led the Sooners, who went on to finish 24-7, win the league title and advance to the national championship game (lost to Holy Cross, 58-47). Bruce Drake's OU team was led that season by National Player of the Year Gerald Tucker.

Drake IBA

Head coaches Bruce Drake of OU (left) and Henry Iba of Oklahoma A&M waged plenty of battles on the hardwood in a fierce intrastate rivalry.

February 16, 1952 | OU 65, Oklahoma A&M 61 (3 OT)

It took three overtimes, but Bruce Drake's Oklahoma squad finally dispatched visiting Oklahoma A&M 65-61 before a Field House crowd of 5,200. Point guard Les Lane knotted the score at 61 and late baskets by John Rogers and Sherman Norton sealed the hard-fought OU victory. Norton finished with 21 points, which set a then-modern scoring record at OU, and Lane added 11. The Sooners' 65 points represented the most at the time in the OU-A&M series.

February 8, 1957 | OU 57, Oklahoma A&M 55

In a scene better suited for a movie script, little-used OU sophomore Dick Anderson hit a 20-footer from the right corner with four seconds left to lift the Sooners to a 57-55 win before 4,800 fans. The basket was just the second in the career of Anderson, who entered the game 1-for-17 on the year and didn't enter the contest until the final three minutes. Gene Hudson scored a team-high 14 points for Doyle Parrack's Sooners, who held the ball for two minutes before the game-winning shot.

Wilt Chamberlain

Kansas’ Wilt Chamberlain pictured in a 1957 game at the OU Field House. Chamberlain (infection) sat out the 1958 game in Norman for the No. 2 Jayhawks and OU claimed a two-point win. 

January 7, 1958 | OU 64, No. 2 Kansas 62

The second-ranked Kansas Jayhawks, playing without star center Wilt Chamberlain (infection), came to Norman with a 10-1 record and left with two losses on the season thanks to a 20-foot shot by OU's Gene Hudson with six seconds remaining. Hudson's glee was momentarily halted when he was subsequently whistled for a foul. But KU's Bob Billings missed the front end of a one-and-one and the Sooners emerged with the victory. The back-and-forth game featured nine ties and eight lead changes.

Heard Garfield

One of the best big men in OU history, Garfield Heard was the star of the Sooners’ 61-59 overtime win over Oklahoma State in 1969.

March 1, 1969 | OU 61, Oklahoma State 59 (OT)

Big man Garfield Heard was a one-man wrecking crew for head coach John MacLeod's Sooners in a 61-59 late-season overtime win over rival Oklahoma State. OU trailed 24-7, and then Heard entered the game and took over. The junior scored 30 points on the day, including the Sooners' final three buckets. His basket with 39 seconds left drew OU within two points, and after an OSU traveling violation, Heard buried a 12-footer to tie the game at 59 with nine seconds left. Only two points were scored in the extra session, of course by Heard.

January 4, 1973 | OU 81, Texas 78

Oklahoma drained a then-school-record 64.2 percent of its field goal attempts and squeaked out an 81-78 non-conference win over Red River rival Texas. Freshman Alvan Adams netted 23 points and pulled down 19 boards as the Sooners were able to hold off the Longhorns despite 22 turnovers. Lee Gilbert was stellar for OU as well, scoring all 16 of his points in the first half. Included for Gilbert was a stretch where he hit seven of eight shots, all from 15-20 feet.

Kruger Player KSU

Current OU head coach Lon Kruger was a two-time Big Eight Player of the Year, but he sat out the 1973 game in Norman due to injury and OU upset the No. 14 Wildcats by 12.

January 20, 1973 | OU 81, No. 14 Kansas State 69

In a game that was supposed to feature eventual Big Eight Player of the Year Lon Kruger, 14th-ranked Kansas State was without the services of its star point guard. Kruger's absence -- he was recovering from an ankle injury -- was apparent. The Wildcats struggled against the Oklahoma press as head coach Jack Ramsey's Sooners posted an 81-69 win. The game was tied 11 times and the lead changed hands on six occasions before OU pulled away behind 19 points and 15 boards from Alvan Adams. Bob Pritchard also provided a major impact, nearly doubling his season scoring average (9.1 ppg) with a 17-point effort.


In the final OU Field House game on March 5, 1975, Alvan Adams torched Iowa State for a then-school record 43 points and 25 rebounds in an 84-79 triumph.

March 5, 1975  | OU 84, Iowa State 79

In the final game at the OU Field House prior to the opening of Lloyd Noble Center, Alvan Adams sent the building out with a bang with a 43-point, 25-rebound performance in an 84-79 Oklahoma win over Iowa State. The 43 points represented a school record at the time, and his 25 boards were three shy of his own OU record that he set two years earlier as a freshman. Said Iowa State senior center Larry Loots, who fouled out trying to defend Adams: "I'm glad I'm graduating. I won't have to see him again." A crowd of 3,609 watched the final contest in the 47-year-old facility.

The Sooner men's basketball team returns to McCasland Field House Monday to host Oklahoma Christian. Tickets are just $5 and fans can purchase them online or by calling at the OU ticket office at (800) 456-GoOU.



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