Sooners are 3-0 at Lloyd Noble Center; have won 20 straight home non-conference games.
||Cade Davis has scored at least 21 points in three of the last six games
THURSDAY'S GAME BASICS
Oklahoma (3-5) plays its first home game in three weeks when its hosts Gardner-Webb (6-5) Thursday at 7 p.m. CT at Lloyd Noble Center. The contest will air on the Sooner Radio Network (KOKC AM 1520 in Oklahoma City; KTBZ AM 1430 in Tulsa; Sirius 127) with Bob Barry Sr. and Mike Houck announcing. The game will be televised by the Sooner Sports Network (KAUT Ch. 43 in OKC; This TV Ch. 6.3 in Tulsa; FS Oklahoma [blacked out in OKC and Tulsa]; ESPN Full Court) with Bob Carpenter and former OU head coach Billy Tubbs calling the action.
Tickets are available for $10, $15 and $30 at the OU Athletics Ticket Office and online at SoonerSports.com. Lloyd Noble Center's north and east ticket windows will open at 5 p.m. on Thursday.
• Oklahoma is off to a 2-0 start after home wins over Coppin State (77-57) and North Carolina Central (71-63 in • The Sooners are 2-0 all-time against Gardner-Webb, with both games occurring during the Jeff Capel era.
• OU has won 22 straight non-conference home games and 80 of its last 82.
• Eight of OU’s top nine scorers are in their first or second year of Division I basketball. Five of the nine are in their first year.
• Oklahoma has committed 26 more turnovers than its opponents (77-51) during its five-game losing streak. Foes have outscored the Sooners 97-50 in points off turnovers during the stretch.
• The Sooners are actually shooting better from the field in their five losses (.464) than they are in their three wins (.457). Opponents, though, are shooting .502 from the field and .444 from 3-point range in OU’s defeats compared to .369 and .328, respectively, in OU’s victories.
| Sooner to Watch
Andrew Fitzgerald | So. | Forward
• Averaging 20.0 points and 9.0 boards over the last two games (Arkansas and Arizona)
• Coming off a career-high-tying 22-point effort at Arizona on Sunday
• Ranks fifth in the Big 12 with his .560 season field goal percentage
• Has shot .500 from the field in seven of OU's eight games (including last six)
• Each of the Sooners’ five losses have come away from home. They went 0-3 in the EA SPORTS Maui Invitational Nov. 22-24 (lost to Kentucky, Virginia and Chaminade) and lost road games at Arkansas and Arizona last week.
• Sophomore forward Andrew Fitzgerald has shot .500 or better from the field in seven of eight games (shot .471 against North Carolina Central) and owns a .560 season percentage to rank fifth in the Big 12. He leads the team with his 15.0 points and 6.1 rebounds per game.
• In two true road games last week, Fitzgerald averaged 20.0 points and 9.0 rebounds. He registered his first career double-double (18 points and a career-high 13 rebounds) at Arkansas and followed with a career-high-tying 22 points and five boards at Arizona. He shot .556 from the field and .833 (10-for-12) from the free throw line.
• After averaging 8.5 points in OU’s first two games, guard Cade Davis is averaging 16.8 points on .468 field goal and .457 (21-for-46) 3-point shooting over the last six outings. On the year, OU’s lone senior averages 14.8 points (ranks 12th in the Big 12), as well as 4.5 rebounds. Davis needs one 3-pointer (currently has 140) to tie Nate Erdmann and Ricky Grace for 10th place on OU’s all-time list, and needs 29 to move into the top five.
• Davis ranks third in the Big 12 with his 2.9 treys per game and fifth with his .418 percentage. Going back to last year, he has made 54 3-pointers over his last 20 games.
• Junior forward Nick Thompson has scored more points the last two games (28) than he scored in OU’s first six (24). He came off the bench to supply 13 points in 25 minutes at Arkansas and followed with 15 points in a starting role in 28 minutes at Arizona. Thompson is now averaging 6.5 points, 5.5 rebounds and 2.3 assists per game. The junior college transfer recorded 14 assists in OU’s first two games (seven in each) but has totaled just four handouts over the last six outings.
• Sophomore guard Steven Pledger averaged a team-high 16.7 points over OU’s first three games, but has been held to a 6.4 average in five games since. He is coming off his best shooting game since the Sooners’ losing streak began (he was 4-for-7 from the field and 2-for-4 from 3-point range Sunday at Arizona).
SUNDAY'S ARIZONA RECAP
• Arizona shot OU opponent season highs of .558 from the field and .688 (11-for-16) from 3-point range in an 83-60 home win in Tucson on Sunday. The game was part of the Big 12/Pac-10 Hardwood Series and marked the Wildcats’ second win in seven games against OU.
• The Sooners shot .489 from the field, their third best mark of the year, but were outrebounded 31-21. One game after pulling down 18 offensive boards at Arkansas, OU managed just three offensive rebounds against Arizona.
• Oklahoma committed 16 turnovers to Arizona’s 10. The Wildcats posted a 25-13 advantage in points off turnovers.
• Sophomore forward Andrew Fitzgerald matched a career high with 22 points. He was 8-for-13 from the field and 6-for-7 from the free throw line while pulling down a team-high-tying five rebounds in 38 minutes (one shy of his career high).
• Junior forward Nick Thompson made his first start in three games and responded with a career-high 15 points. He was 5-for-8 from the floor and for the second straight game hit three of his six 3-point attempts.
• Sophomore guard Steven Pledger scored 10 points off the bench and added three assists and two steals in 25 minutes.
• Eight of the 11 Wildcats who attempted a field goal on the day shot at least 50 percent from the field. All seven who attempted a 3-pointer shot at least 50 percent from behind the arc.
• Thompson’s 3-pointer with 18:53 remaining made the score 40-31 in favor of Arizona. The Wildcats, who missed their first four field goal attempts of the second half, then made seven straight shots to take a 56-38 lead with 12:53 remaining.
• Gardner-Webb enters Thursday’s game with a 6-5 record. The Bulldogs are 2-0 at home, 2-5 on the road and 2-0 in neutral site games.
• GWU is shooting .430 from the field, .313 from 3-point range (6.1 makes per game) and .660 from the free throw line (14.5 makes per game). Opponents are shooting .420 from the field and .372 from behind the arc (7.0 makes per outing).
• The Bulldogs lost 90-82 at Elon on Tuesday despite shooting .614 from the field and .500 (7-for-14) from 3-point range. They allowed the Phoenix to shoot .545 from the field and .571 (12-for-21) from long range. Elon also went 18-for-21 at the free throw line.
• Senior guard Jonathan Moore leads the team with his 16.1 scoring average and contributes 5.1 rebounds per game. He’s made a team-high 24 3-pointers (shooting .329) and 47 free throws (.691). Moore has scored in double figures in nine of 11 games and has registered totals of 21, 24 and 32 points. He scored his 32 against Mercer when he was 5-for-11 from 3-point range and 11-for-13 from the foul line.
• Sophomore forward Stefon Johnson averages 10.2 points and 5.6 rebounds. He owns a .505 field goal percentage.
• Freshman point guard Luke Davis averages 8.3 points and a team-high 4.4 assists per outing. Davis is shooting a team-best .484 from 3-point distance (15-for-31).
• Junior guard Laron Buggs played in high school at Tulsa Central. He averages 8.3 points, 3.4 rebounds and 2.0 assists per game.
• Junior forward Josh Henley supplies 7.0 points and a team-high 7.6 rebounds in just 21.3 minutes per contest.
• First-year head coach Chris Holtmann came to Gardner-Webb from Ohio University, where he spent the last two seasons as an assistant coach. Ohio, which finished 22-15 last year, won the Mid-American Conference postseason tournament and posted a 97-83 first-round NCAA Tournament win over Georgetown.
OU/GARDNER-WEBB SERIES HISTORY
Thursday’s game will mark the third between Oklahoma and Gardner-Webb. OU won the first meeting 69-55 on Nov. 16, 2007, in the third-place game of the 2K Sports College Hoops Classic in New York, N.Y., by holding the Bulldogs to .279 field goal shooting. Blake Griffin finished with 17 points and eight rebounds for OU while Longar Longar added 16 points and 11 boards.
The next year in Norman, the 12th-ranked Sooners held on for an 80-76 victory in their fourth game of the season. Griffin, who was 14-for-20 from the field, registered 35 points and 21 rebounds (as well as five assists and three steals) to become the first player in Big 12 history to record consecutive games of at least 20 points and 20 boards. Gardner-Webb took at 74-73 lead with 2:27 remaining before the Sooners closed the game with a 7-2 spurt. Aaron Linn led the Bulldogs with 22 points while current Gardner-Webb forward Josh Henley finished with 15 points and 12 rebounds in playing the entire game.
HOME IS WHERE THE "W" IS
Oklahoma has dominated home non-conference games over the last decade, winning 80 of its last 82 non-league contests inside Lloyd Noble Center going back to Jan. 3, 2000 (good for a .976 winning percentage). Included was a streak of 49 non-conference home victories that was snapped by Villanova on Dec. 6, 2006. The current string stands at 22 games.
Oklahoma hosts Oral Roberts on Saturday at 2 p.m. CT. The game will be televised on the Sooner Sports Network.