The best player on the floor tonight wasn’t very effective through 35 minutes of the game, but in the final stretches of the Red River Rivalry, Buddy Hield showed why he is the front-runner for the Wooden Award. In addition to that, he hit the game winner over the No. 23 Texas Longhorns to push the No. 3 Oklahoma Sooners into the winner’s circle in a low scoring game (for OU), 63-60.
Throughout the game, Texas had a great game plan for Buddy, which resembled the same one used on him by Kansas State in a loss on Saturday. The player that kept this team afloat throughout the game was Isaiah Cousins who constantly played under control at the point guard position throughout the game and finished with 17 points off 6-of-14 shooting and 3-of-5 from three. Not to mention, Cousins really did a great job using his big 6-foot-4 frame against a 5-foot-11 Javan Felix, and also had 6 rebounds. Ryan Spangler didn’t score too much, with only 8, but his defensive intensity in a battle with Texas’ senior big man Prince Ibeh was great. Spangler finished the game with 10 rebounds. A player that has really struggled the past couple of games has been junior guard Jordan Woodard who finished with just 3 points tonight along with just 2 assists, shooting 1-of-6 from 3-point.
Oklahoma didn’t lead much at all, just early in the game when they were up 3-2. Texas really controlled everything OU did, but late in the game Buddy really just showed up, scoring the last 12 points of the game for the team while ultimately hitting the final shot of the game to win it for his team. He finished with 27 points and 5 rebounds off 7-of-18 shooting and only 3-of-10 shooting from three, and 2 of those came in the final 4 minutes of the game.
Honestly, Oklahoma hasn’t played too well these past two games, and haven’t shot well either. Kansas is coming to town for another ESPN televised game on Saturday. The Sooners look for a win against the Jayhawks in revenge of the loss in Kansas, which was probably the most exciting game of the year. In order to beat Kansas, coach Kruger has to figure out what teams have figured out about them and why Woodard hasn’t executed the way he’s executed all season. Look for Buddy to rise up to the occasion as well, and something they didn’t have against KU the first time was Cousins who wasn’t playing the best he could play at the time but clearly, he’s back. Oklahoma improves to (20-3) on the season, which is their 4th straight year with 20-plus wins.