OU Stays on Road for Game at No. 12 Baylor

Athletics Communications
By Athletics Communications
University of Oklahoma
JANUARY 17, 2014
No. 25 Oklahoma (13-4, 2-2) at No. 12 Baylor (13-3, 1-2)
 Date & Tip Time  Saturday, Jan. 18 at 1:05 p.m. CT
 Location  Waco, Texas | Ferrell Center
 Radio  Sooner Radio Network 
 KRXO 107.7 FM in Oklahoma City
 KTBZ 1430 AM in Tulsa
 Webcast  WatchESPN
 Live Stats  GameTracker
 Game Info  Game Notes (PDF)

Playing its third ranked opponent in four games, No. 25 Oklahoma (13-4, 2-2) plays at No. 12/13 Baylor (13-3, 21-2) on Saturday at 1 p.m. CT in Waco, Texas.  The Sooners, who are 1-1 in true road games, are coming off a 72-66 loss at Kansas State on Tuesday, a contest in which they shot a season-low .333 from the field.  Baylor lost at Texas Tech on Wednesday, 82-72.  The Bears, who are 9-0 at home, allowed the Red Raiders to shoot an opponent-season-high .571 from the field. 

Saturday’s contest will air on the Sooner Radio Network (KRXO 107.7 FM "The Franchise" in Oklahoma City; KTBZ 1430 AM in Tulsa) with Toby Rowland and Mike Houck calling the action.  The game will be televised by ESPN with Jon Sciambi and Fran Fraschilla announcing.

Complete Release (PDF) | Schedule | Media Guide | Tickets

• Oklahoma owns a 39-10 series advantage against Baylor and has won 34 of the last 39 meetings (including a streak of 30 straight wins that was snapped four years ago).  The Sooners possess a 17-5 series lead in games played in Waco.  OU is 30-5 against the Bears since the inception of the Big 12 Conference and swept the series last year (74-71 in Waco, 90-76 in Norman).

• Sophomore forward Ryan Spangler has performed at a first-team All-Big 12 level the past two games, averaging 18.5 points and 14.5 rebounds while shooting .714 from the field against top-10 Iowa State and on the road against Kansas State.  His 15 boards vs. the Cyclones were a career high and so were his 21 points against the Wildcats.  Spangler leads the Big 12 with his 9.5 rebounds a game and with his seven double-doubles, and has shot at least 50 percent from the field in every game this season.  He is shooting .870 (20-for-23) from the free throw line in Big 12 play after shooting .540 (27-for-50) in pre-conference action.

• OU opened eyes in August when it averaged 90.6 points a contest during its five-game exhibition tour of Belgium and France (it averaged 70.6 last season).  Since returning to the U.S., the Sooners have continued to put up points.  They are averaging 85.8 points through 17 regular season games to lead the Big 12 and rank eighth nationally.  The last time OU averaged more than 80.0 points per game for an entire season was in 1994-95 (81.7 ppg in Kelvin Sampson’s first year as head coach; see chart on page 3 of these notes).

• The 3-point shot has been kind to OU in Big 12 play.  The Sooners lead the league with their 9.8 treys per game in conference action, 2.5 more than the next highest average (7.3 by Baylor).  OU is shooting .390 from behind the arc in league play and boasts four of the top eight 3-point shooters by percentage.  Tyler Neal leads the league with his .545 (6-for-11) mark, Isaiah Cousins ranks third at .462 (6-for-13), Frank Booker ranks seventh at .444 (8-for-18) and Buddy Hield ranks eighth at .441 (15-for-34).  Hield’s 3.8 treys per game lead the league (Baylor’s Brady Heslip and Kansas’ Wayne Selden rank second with 3.0 per outing).

• Four Sooners have each already scored significantly more points through 17 games this year than they did all of last season (32 games), and three of them saw at least fairly regular minutes a year ago.  Clark has tallied 292 points this year (207 last year; 41% increase), Hield has netted 280 (211 last year; 33% increase) and sophomore Isaiah Cousins has registered 181 (85 last season; 113% increase).  Senior forward Tyler Neal, who averaged just 6.8 minutes a game last year but is averaging 15.0 this season, has scored 103 points (30 last year; 243% increase).  Cousins shot .279 from the field and .250 from 3-point distance a year ago but is shooting .462 and .429 this season.  Similarly, Neal shot .214 and .261 as a junior but sports respective .529 and .484 figures this year.

• Picked third in the Big 12 preseason coaches poll, Baylor (13-3, 1-2) went 12-1 in pre-conference play (lone loss to Syracuse in Maui Invitational title game) but has lost two of its last three.  In Big 12 play, the Bears beat TCU at home (88-62) but fell at Iowa State (87-72) and Texas Tech (82-72).  On the season, Baylor leads the conference in 3-point field goal percentage (.400), rebounding margin (+10.2 per game) and offensive rebounding percentage (.443).  It ranks sixth in scoring offense (78.6 ppg), third in scoring defense (66.9 ppg allowed), third in field goal percentage (.485) and eighth in free throw percentage (.680).

• Baylor sports a balanced scoring attack, with four players averaging in double figures.  Senior forward Cory Jefferson is averaging team highs of 13.2 points and 8.4 rebounds (ranks third in Big 12) on .537 field goal shooting and has six double-doubles.  Junior point guard Kenny Chery averages 11.6 points and 5.1 assists per game (fourth most in league) while shooting .897 (35-for-39) from the foul line.  Senior guard Brady Heslip contributes 11.1 points a contest while leading the league in 3-pointers per game (2.8) and ranking second in 3-point field goal percentage (.468).  Sophomore center Isaiah Austin, a high school teammate of OU’s Je’lon Hornbeak, is averaging 10.3 points, 5.5 boards and a Big 12-leading 2.9 blocks per outing.  Sophomore forward Taurean Prince averaged 7.2 points in non-conference play but leads the team with his 15.0 average in Big 12 games (shooting .607 from field).

• Scott Drew is in his 11th year as Baylor’s head coach and owns a 191-141 (.575) record at the school.

• The Sooners are ranked No. 25 in this week’s AP poll, their first top-25 ranking in either of the major polls since Nov. 23, 2009.

• Oklahoma is the only Big 12 team that has used the same starting lineup in every game this year.  Each OU starter is averaging double figures in scoring, and the quintet has accounted for 78 percent of the team’s points on the year.  The Sooners are the only Big 12 team with five players averaging double figures in points.

• OU reached the 80-point mark seven times last season.  This year’s Sooners have already hit 80 points in 13 of 17 games.  OU’s been held under 75 points just twice this season (won 64-52 over Texas A&M Dec. 21, lost 72-66 at Kansas State on Tuesday).

• The Sooners have surpassed 100 points twice this year after reaching the century mark just once over the previous eight seasons.  The last time OU had two 100-point games in a season was during the 2004-05 campaign.  The last time the Sooners scored 100 points at least three times in a season was 2001-02.

• OU has had at least five double-digit scorers in seven of 17 games this season after it accomplished the feat three times all of last year.

• In their first eight games, the Sooners were outrebounded by an average of 0.7 boards per contest.  In nine games since, OU has outrebounded its foes by an average of 5.2 an outing. 

• OU has scored at least 40 points in 25 of 34 halves this season.  Last year, the Sooners scored 40 in a half 17 times all season.

• Despite standing just 6-8, sophomore forward Ryan Spangler has won the opening tip in 12 of 17 games this year (as well as the overtime tip against Louisiana Tech).

• Oklahoma players have recorded 12 double-digit rebounding totals through 17 games, compared to seven all of last year (in 32 games).  Romero Osby paced OU with three games of 10 or more boards last year.  Spangler already has nine such games this season.

• As a junior last year, Cameron Clark attempted one 3-point field goal (he made it).  This season, he is 19-for-46 (.413) from deep.  Clark’s scoring average is up by 10.8 points from last season (6.8 ppg to 17.3).  The last Sooner to increase his scoring average by double digits from one year to the next was Ryan Minor (4.7 ppg as a freshman in 1992-93 to 16.2 as a sophomore in 1993-94).

• Clark joined OU’s 1,000-point club Dec. 30 against Louisiana Tech and ranks 35th on the all-time scoring list with 1,062 points.

• Freshman Jordan Woodard leads the Big 12 in free throw makes (97) and attempts (125) despite averaging 2.0 attempts the last two games.  Named the Wayman Tisdale National Freshman of the Week on Dec. 17 by CBSSports.com and the USBWA, Woodard has attempted 10 or more free throws six times this season.  Interestingly, 71 percent of his free throw attempts have come after halftime.  Woodard is averaging 11.4 points and 4.5 assists (leads all Big 12 freshmen and sophomores) while ranking eighth in the league with his .776 free throw percentage.  He has made more free throws than all but five Big 12 players have attempted.

• After averaging 2.7 points last season and never scoring more than 10 points in a game prior to Nov. 22 of this year, sophomore guard Isaiah Cousins has netted at least 10 points in nine of the last 14 contests.  He scored a career-high 19 against Seton Hall on Nov. 22 (7-for-8 field goal shooting) and followed with 15 against Michigan State the next night.  In last Saturday’s upset of No. 9/7 Iowa State, he was 5-for-8 from the field and tallied 17 points.

OU returns home to host TCU on Wednesday at 8 p.m. CT.  The game will be televised by ESPNU.



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