No. 2 OU Back Home vs. Texas A&M

Athletics Communications
By Athletics Communications
University of Oklahoma

 No. 2/2 Oklahoma (21-1, 7-0) vs. Texas A&M (17-5, 3-4) 
 Date & Tip Time

 Wednesday, Feb. 4 at 8:05 p.m. CST

 Location  Norman, Okla. | Lloyd Noble Center
 Tickets  OU Athletics Ticket Office
 TV

 Big 12 Network
 KOCB 34/Cox 11 in Oklahoma City
 KJRH 2/Cox 9 in Tulsa
 ESPN Full Court

 Radio

 Sooner Radio Network 
 KOKC AM 1520 in Oklahoma City
 KTBZ AM 1430 in Tulsa
 Sirius 118

 Series History  OU leads 27-4
 Live Stats  SoonerSports.com/GameTracker
 Game Info  Game Notes (PDF)

PREVIEWING WEDNESDAY’S GAME
Trying for its best season start ever, No. 2/2 Oklahoma (21-1, 7-0) plays host to Texas A&M (17-5, 3-4) Wednesday at 8 p.m. CST.  The Sooners, who boast a 16-game winning streak at home (nation’s fifth longest), are coming off a 78-68 win at Iowa State Saturday.  Texas A&M, which has won two straight following a 1-4 league start, beat Oklahoma State at home Saturday by a 76-64 count.  Wednesday’s game will be regionally televised by the Big 12 Network (KOCB Ch. 34/Cox 11 in OKC; KJRH Ch. 2/Cox 9 in Tulsa; ESPN Full Court) with Bob Carpenter and Reid Gettys announcing.  It will air on the Sooner Radio Network (flagship KOKC AM 1520 in OKC; KTBZ AM 1430 in Tulsa) with Bob Barry, Sr. and Mike Houck calling the action.

TICKET INFORMATION
As of 3 p.m. Tuesday, less than 200 tickets remain for Wednesday's game.  Tickets are available for $10 and $25 at the OU Athletics Ticket Office (800-456-4668) and here.  Lloyd Noble Center ticket windows will open Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. 

PROMOTIONS
• Wednesday marks Mascot Night at Lloyd Noble Center.  The first 1,000 kids (eighth grade or below) through the doors will receive a free mascot growth chart.
• The OU baseball team will also sign autographs on the upper southwest concourse from 7 to 8 p.m.

 Texas A&M's Projected Starters
Pos.
No.
 Name
Ht.
Wt.
Year
 2008-09 Stats
F
0
 Bryan Davis
6-9
240
Jr.
 10.6 ppg, 6.0 rpg, 54.9 FG%
F
23
 Josh Carter
6-7
200
Sr.
 12.9 ppg, 4.2 rpg, 37.5 3FG%
C
41
 Chinemelu Elonu
6-10
235
Jr.
 10.0 ppg, 7.3 rpg, 63.9 FG%
G
3
 Derrick Roland
6-4
190
Jr.
 5.5 ppg, 2.6 rpg, 1.7 apg
G
15
 Donald Sloan
6-3
205
Jr.
 11.4 ppg, 3.6 rpg, 3.2 apg

 Oklahoma's Projected Starters
Pos.
No.
 Name
Ht.
Wt.
Year
 2008-09 Stats
F
23
 Blake Griffin
6-10
251
So.
 22.4 ppg, 14.1 rpg, 63.6 FG%
F
32
 Taylor Griffin
6-7
238
Sr.
 8.9 ppg, 6.2 rpg, 50.0 FG%
G
5
 Tony Crocker
6-6
206
Jr.
 10.2 ppg, 3.5 rpg, 35.5 3FG%
G
13
 Willie Warren
6-4
207
Fr.
 15.5 ppg, 2.7 apg, 50.5 FG%
G
20
 Austin Johnson
6-3
176
Sr.
 8.6 ppg, 2.8 rpg, 4.5 apg 

MISCELLANEOUS NOTES
• Oklahoma’s No. 2 AP ranking is its highest since the final poll of the 1989-90 season when it was No. 1.
• At 21-1, Oklahoma is tied with Connecticut and Utah State for the best record in the country.  No other team has 21 wins.
• A win Wednesday over Texas A&M would give the Sooners their best start in school history. 
• Only Kansas has posted better one-loss starts in Big 12 history (34-1 in 1996-97 and 23-1 in 2007-08).
• The Sooners’ 7-0 conference start is their best since beginning 11-0 in the Big Eight in 1985.
• Oklahoma is 134-52 (.720) all-time against Big 12 teams from Texas (Baylor, Texas, Texas A&M and Texas Tech).  It is 82-26 (.759) against those programs since the formation of the Big 12 Conference.
• During their current nine-game winning streak, the Sooners are outshooting their opponents from the field, .507 to .376.  They have shot better than each of those nine foes. 
Blake Griffin leads the Big 12 in scoring (22.4 ppg), rebounding (14.1 rpg) and field goal percentage (.636), while ranking fourth in blocks (1.4 bpg) and 14th in steals (1.4 spg).  The 6-10 sophomore also averages 2.5 assists per contest, more than any other league player taller than 6-5.  He has recorded at least two assists in 18 of 22 games and at least three in 12 outings.
• Nationally, Griffin ranks first in rebounding and double-doubles (18), second in free throw attempts (9.7 per game), sixth in field goal percentage and 12th in scoring.
• Griffin has already registered more points (492) and rebounds (310) this season than he did all of last year (484 and 301).
• Griffin’s 23 points and 15 rebounds at Iowa State Saturday gave him his 11th 20-point, 15-rebound game of the year, more than any player nationally since the 1996-97 season.  Tim Duncan (Wake Forest in 1996-97) and Paul Millsap (Louisiana Tech in 2005-06) registered nine 20/15 games. 
• Griffin has accounted for 28 percent of OU’s points, 38 percent of its rebounds and 42 percent of its defensive boards in 16 percent of the team’s minutes played.
• Brothers Blake and Taylor Griffin are shooting a combined .592 from the field this year and have teamed to pull down 20.3 rebounds a game (55 percent of the team’s total).
Austin Johnson has scored in double figures in four of the last six games (14.0 ppg in those six) after doing it three times in the season’s first 16 contests.  OU is 21-1 over the last two seasons when Johnson scores at least 10 points.
• Junior college transfer Juan Pattillo, who came out of a redshirt season in time for the Jan. 12 Texas game but totaled just four minutes over the next three games, is averaging 10.3 points, 2.7 rebounds and 1.0 blocked shot in an average of 19.0 minutes over the last three outings.  He is 12-for-18 from the field (.667) and 7-for-7 at the foul line during the stretch.

 
 Sooner to Watch 

 Willie Warren | Fr. | Guard
 • Reigning Big 12 Rookie of the Week after 29-point, 6-rebound outburst at Iowa State
 • Averaging 15.5 points per game on the season (17.6 over the last 11 games)
 • Is 27-for-57 from 3-point range over the last 11 outings (.474)
 • On pace to become OU's highest true freshman scorer since Tim McCalister (1983-84)

   

OFFENSIVE NOTES
• The Sooners are shooting .486 from the field.  The last time OU shot better for an entire season was 20 years ago (.491 in 1988-89).
• Over the last 12 games, the Sooners are shooting .402 from 3-point range and averaging 7.5 treys.  Over the first 10 games this season, they shot .311 from behind the arc and averaged 6.4 3-pointers.
Tony Crocker and Willie Warren have combined for 55 treys over the last 12 games.  Warren is 29-for-60 (.483) from deep in those 12 outings while Crocker is 26-for-63 (.413).  Over OU’s first 10 games, each owned a .273 season 3-point figure (12-for-44).
• In OU’s 15 non-league games, Austin Johnson was 13-for-47 (.277) from downtown.  He is 16-for-32 (.500) in seven Big 12 games.
• Last year, Blake Griffin became the first player in school history standing at least 6-10 to log three or more handouts in 11 games.  He has done it in 12 games this season.
• Warren is shooting .505 from the field on the season to rank fifth in the Big 12 and first among league guards.  The last OU guard to shoot at least .500 from the field for an entire year was Nolan Johnson (.559) in 1999-00.
• Despite a modest .680 team free throw percentage (they rank ninth in the Big 12), the Sooners have made 11 more foul shots than their opponents have attempted.  OU has shot 202 more free throws than its foes, good for an average of 9.2 more per game.  Griffin has attempted 36 percent of the team’s free throws (214 of its 596).
• Oklahoma has made at least one 3-pointer in 406 consecutive games (last one without a trey was at Memphis on Dec. 23, 1996).

DEFENSIVE NOTES
• Oklahoma leads the Big 12 (all games) with its .384 field goal percentage defense.  The last time OU held opponents to a lower collective figure for an entire season was 48 years ago (.377 in 1960-61).
• The Sooners have held their first seven Big 12 opponents to a combined .390 field goal mark, with Kansas State (.327) and Texas (.338) shooting season lows and Baylor (.346) posting its second worst mark of the season.
• OU has held nine of its last 15 foes to a field goal mark under .360.
• Over the last six games, Taylor Griffin has recorded 12 blocked shots and nine steals.  He ranks fourth in Big 12 play with his 1.7 blocks per game and 13th with his 1.4 steals.  Registering 54 rejections over his sophomore and junior seasons combined (the most ever during a two-year period by a Sooner standing under 6-foot-8), the senior has 29 blocks already this year (1.3 per game).

OU Fast Fact 
Blake Griffin needs just 24 points to join Wayman Tisdale, Alvan Adams and Jeff Webster as the only Sooners to reach 1,000 career points during their sophomore season.

SATURDAY’S IOWA STATE RECAP
• Oklahoma shot .654 from the field in the second half and outscored Iowa State 13-2 over the last 4:26 to post a 78-68 road win.
• The Sooners led by as many 11 in the first half but settled for a 33-33 halftime tie.  Iowa State led by as many as three in the second half.  The Cyclones’ last lead was 66-65 at the 5:07 mark.
• OU shot .508 from the field against a Cyclones team that entered the day giving up 62.1 points a game and allowing teams to shoot .389.
Willie Warren (29) and Blake Griffin (23) combined for 52 of OU’s 78 points.  Warren was 9-for-18 from the field and 5-for-10 from 3-point range while Griffin was 10-for-13 from the floor.
• Warren added four assists, a career-high six rebounds and four assists while Griffin had a game-high 15 boards and three handouts.
• In 20 minutes off the bench, Juan Pattillo contributed 10 points (on 4-for-7 shooting), two rebounds and two blocks.
• OU won for the 10th time in its last 14 meetings with Iowa State.  The victory was the Sooners’ first in Ames since 2003 (had lost two straight).
• The Sooners’ seven turnovers matched a season low.
• The win improved Jeff Capel’s record to 3-1 against Iowa State as OU’s head coach.

WHO’S HOT
• A strong candidate for national-player-of-the-year honors, sophomore forward Blake Griffin has scored at least 20 points in 16 of 22 games this season, including seven of the last eight.  The 6-10, 251-pounder has registered 18 double-doubles (last year he had 10) and has led OU in rebounding 20 times.  Griffin leads the Big 12 in scoring (22.4 ppg), rebounding (14.1 rpg) and field goal percentage.  Big 12 players who rank second in the respective categories are Iowa State’s Craig Brackins (19.5 ppg) and Kansas’ Cole Aldrich (9.8 rpg and .626).  Griffin also ranks fourth in blocks (1.4) and 14th in steals (1.4).
• After averaging 6.6 points and 4.3 assists per game in non-conference play, senior guard Austin Johnson is averaging 12.9 points and 4.9 assists in seven league games.  He has scored at least 15 points in four of the last six contests.  Johnson is 16-for-32 from 3-point range in OU’s seven Big 12 outings, owns a 3.1 assist-to-turnover ratio and has blocked five shots.
• Over the last 11 games, freshman Willie Warren is averaging 17.6 points and 2.9 assists.  He is shooting .540 from the field and .474 (27-for-57) from behind the arc in those contests.  Warren has scored at least 29 points three times in those 11 games.
• After scoring in double figures once in OU’s first seven games, junior guard Tony Crocker has done it in 10 of the last 15.  He is averaging 11.9 points over the 15 outings and is shooting .400 from 3-point range (30-for-75).  By comparison, Crocker averaged 6.6 points and shot .250 from 3-point territory over OU’s first seven games this year.
• Junior forward Juan Pattillo is averaging 10.3 points over the last three games off the bench.  He is 12-for-18 from the field and 7-for-7 from the free throw line over those the three outings.

PREVIEWING TEXAS A&M
• Texas A&M is 17-5 on the year and is tied for fifth place in the Big 12 with a 3-4 mark.  It won both of its non-conference road games (Alabama and Rice) but has lost all three of its league road outings (Oklahoma State by 11, Kansas by 20 and Texas by nine).
• In Big 12 play, A&M is shooting .432 from the field (ranks sixth in Big 12), .364 from 3-point range (eighth) and .665 from the free throw line (ninth).  League opponents are shooting .444 from the field and .333 from 3-point range against them.
• Junior center Chinemelu Elonu and junior guard Donald Sloan (11.0 points per game each) are two of five Aggies who average double figures in scoring in Big 12 play.  Elonu also averages 8.0 rebounds and 2.0 blocks while shooting .577 from the field.  Sloan also contributes 3.9 boards and 2.3 assists.
• Senior forward Josh Carter and sophomore guard B.J. Holmes average 10.7 points per league game each.  Carter, who averages a team-high 12.9 points a contest on the year, also averages 4.1 rebounds in Big 12 action while shooting .357 from long range.  Holmes comes off the bench and has shot .429 from behind the arc (15-for-35) and .923 from the free throw line (24-for-26) in seven conference outings.
• Junior forward Brian Davis scores 10.4 points a game in Big 12 play to go along with 5.1 rebounds.  Davis is shooting .490 from the field in league action but owns a .549 season figure.
• Mark Turgeon is in his second year as Texas A&M’s head coach and owns a 42-16 (.724) record there.  The 1987 Kansas graduate is in his 11th season as a collegiate head coach and owns a 195-135 (.591) career mark.

SERIES WITH TEXAS A&M
Oklahoma owns a 27-4 all-time record against Texas A&M and is 13-1 against the Aggies in Norman (lone loss was a 56-49 decision two years ago).  The Sooners are 22-4 against the Aggies since the formation of the Big 12 Conference (11-1 in Norman).

EARLIER THIS YEAR AGAINST THE AGGIES
• With Blake Griffin battling foul trouble much of the afternoon, Austin Johnson recorded game highs of 19 points and seven assists in a 69-63 road win over Texas A&M Jan. 17.  Johnson’s 19 points were one shy of his career high at the time.
• Johnson was 6-for-12 from the field, 3-for-6 from long range and 4-for-4 at the free throw line while adding three rebounds, two blocked shots and a steal.
• The Sooners scored the game’s first nine points, led 30-25 at halftime and were up by as many as 14 in the second half (48-34 and 51-37).  Texas A&M drew to within two, 59-57, with 2:06 remaining, but Johnson’s 3-pointer 30 seconds later put the Sooners back up by five and the Aggies never got closer than four the rest of the way.
• The Sooners went 6-for-12 from behind the arc to mark their third game of the season that they shot at least .500 on 3-pointers.
• Griffin, who played only 24 minutes, recorded 16 points and a season-low six rebounds.  He was 4-for-5 from the free throw line.
Taylor Griffin finished with 11 points, four boards and two assists.  His point total was his highest in eight outings.  Griffin was also a major factor on the defensive end, registering two blocks and three steals.
Ryan Wright provided a valuable 16 minutes off the bench with five points, three rebounds and two blocked shots.  He was 2-for-3 from the field while spelling Blake Griffin.
• Texas A&M was led by Josh Carter’s 17 points (3-for-5 from 3-point range) and seven rebounds.  B.J. Holmes came off the bench to score 12 points (he was 6-for-6 at the foul line).

MORE BLAKE
• Lost in Blake Griffin’s gaudy scoring and rebounding statistics are some pretty impressive assist numbers.  The forward ranks third on the team with 2.5 assists per game this season and has registered at least one handout in all 22 outings.  Last season, Griffin became the first Sooner standing 6-foot-10 or taller to ever dish at least three assists in a game 11 times.  He has recorded at least three assists 12 times already this year.
• Griffin (14.1 rpg and .636 FG%) is on pace to shatter single-season school records for rebounding average and field goal percentage.  The standards of 13.3 boards per game and .627 from the field were set by Alvan Adams in 1974-75 and Al Beal in 1978-79.  Griffin is also averaging 9.7 free throw attempts a game (ranks second nationally), a figure that would break Stacey King’s 1988-89 school record of 8.9 foul shots per outing.
• Griffin has 56 dunks on the season, good for an average of 2.5 per game.
• Griffin owns the best vertical leap (no step) on the team at 37.5 inches, as well as the best max leap (no limit on steps) by reaching 27 inches above the rim.  He also owns an 84.5-inch wingspan (seven feet and one-half inch).

AWARDS CENTRAL
Oklahoma has picked up 10 of the Big 12's 24 player and rookie of the week awards this season.  Blake Griffin has been named player of the week a league-high four times (Nov. 17, Nov. 24, Dec. 1, Jan. 12) while Austin Johnson claimed the honor Jan. 19.  Willie Warren is a five-time recipient of the rookie of the week award (Nov. 24, Dec. 1, Dec. 29, Jan. 5, Feb. 2).

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