More Top-10 Acclaim for Basketball

Athletics Communications
By Athletics Communications
University of Oklahoma

Sept. 22, 2008

NORMAN, Okla. - The Oklahoma men's basketball team continues to garner attention from national preseason publications. 

After picked the Sooners at No. 7 this summer and Athlon gave OU a No. 10 rating two-and-a-half weeks ago, a pair of even higher rankings have been issued for Jeff Capel's 2008-09 squad.  Slam magazine ranks OU No. 3 in the country this week while the comprehensive Blue Ribbon Yearbook tabs the Sooners at No. 6.

Slam's college preview issue, which includes a feature story on sophomore Blake Griffin, has the Sooners picked behind No. 1 North Carolina and No. 2 Pitt.  The only other Big 12 team in the top 20 is Texas (No. 11).

Blue Ribbon Yearbook, widely considered "the bible" of college basketball, picks OU behind only No. 1 North Carolina, No. 2 Pittsburgh, No. 3 Notre Dame, No. 4 UCLA and No. 5 Connecticut.  Texas appears at No. 11, Baylor at No. 16 and Kansas at No. 17.

Also, Lindy's college basketball preview has the Sooners at No. 7 nationally and the favorite for a Big 12 championship.  The publication ranks Texas No. 14, Texas A&M No. 21 and Kansas No. 32.

Lindy's also rates Griffin as the country's top center and lists OU's frontcourt as the nation's fifth best.

Says Lindy's, "Griffin was considered a virtual lock in the NBA draft lottery, but he passed it up for one more year at Oklahoma.  Now, the Sooners -- who improved from 16 wins two years ago to 23 and an NCAA Tournament berth in Griffin's freshman year -- have their sights set much higher than last season's second-round NCAA exit.

"'We want to go as far as we can,' Griffin said. 'We want to win a Big 12 championship.  Go to the Final Four, the national championship game.'"

Oklahoma plays a pair of home exhibition games on Nov. 5 and 8 before opening the regular season Nov. 14 at home against 2008 NCAA tournament team American.

For season ticket information, click here or call the OU Athletics Ticket Office at (800) 456-4668 or (405) 325-2424.  OU student tickets go on sale Tuesday, Sept. 23.

Where They Rank Oklahoma Men's Basketball
Slam: No. 3
Blue Ribbon Yearbook: No. 6
Lindy's: No. 7 No. 7
Athlon: No. 10
CollegeHoops.Net: No. 12