Dec. 30, 2008
Oklahoma suffered its first loss of the season, a 96-88 setback at Arkansas in which the Sooners never led.
OU trailed by as many as 25 (72-47 with 11:50 remaining) before a 16-0 run cut the deficit to nine (72-63 with 9:08 left). After Arkansas went up by 12 (81-69 with 5:57 left), OU drew to within four on two occasions (81-77 and 83-79) but could get no closer.
Arkansas' 96 points were the most surrendered by the Sooners since losing 96-91 to Washington on Nov. 26, 2004, in the Great Alaska Shootout. The previous high for points given up by OU under third-year head coach Jeff Capel was 91 last season in an overtime win over Baylor. The previous high for a regulation game under Capel was 85 points last year in a loss at Kansas.
OU entered the game leading the Big 12 Conference in field goal percentage defense (.379), but allowed the Razorbacks to shoot .517 on the night.
The Sooners' 13 3-pointers were their most since draining 13 treys against Denver in last season's second game. OU has made at least 11 treys in each of its last four games against Arkansas.
Freshman Willie Warren's 35 points marked a career high, as did his seven 3-pointers, four rebounds and four assists (tied). The reigning Big 12 Rookie of the Week has scored 66 points over the last two games and has gone 11-for-20 (.550) from 3-point distance in the process.
Blake Griffin finished with 21 points and a game-high 13 rebounds for his 10th double-double in 13 games this year (he had 10 all of last season). The sophomore forward added four assists and three blocked shots.
Junior guard Tony Crocker netted 18 points in 26 minutes of play, all on 3-pointers. Crocker, who picked up four fouls in 12 first-half minutes and didn't enter the second half until the 13:33 mark, tied a career high with six treys on 13 attempts. He has scored in double figures in five of the last six games after doing it once in OU's first seven games.
The loss snapped a five-game winning streak against Arkansas that dated back to the 1998-99 season. The Razorbacks lead the all-time series, 13-10.
Oklahoma wraps up the non-conference portion of its regular season with home games against Coppin State (Saturday at 12:30 p.m.) and Maryland Eastern Shore (Monday, Jan. 5, at 7 p.m.).