NORMAN — Just three weeks after suffering a gunshot wound in a gang-related shooting during a trip home to New York, Oklahoma guard Isaiah Cousins is practicing without limitations.
“He’s doing great. He practiced full speed yesterday,” OU coach Lon Kruger said Tuesday during the Big 12 basketball coaches
The shooting, which occurred May 27 in Mount Vernon, N.Y., left Cousins, who was an innocent bystander in the incident, with a wound in the back of his left shoulder. Doctors elected not to remove the bullet.
Cousins returned to Norman last week for summer school and began working out with the team this week.
“He’s very lucky to have come out of it as he did,” Kruger said. “He’s standing there having an innocent conversation and someone shoots into a crowd and the bullet could have gone anywhere.”
Cousins, who will be a junior this season, averaged 11 points per game, 4.2 rebounds and 2.1 assists per game last season. The season was his first as a starter.
“I was at the wrong place at the wrong time,” Cousins told soonersports.com, the team’s official website. “I just happened to get shot. A bullet doesn’t have a name (on it). It probably wasn’t meant for me. I just happened to be in the way of the bullet. “Everything happens for a reason. It’s just a motivation for the future.”
Hield’s upside: Guard Buddy Hield is coming of an All-Big 12 in which he averaged 16.5 points per game. But Kruger expects this to be a developmental offseason for Hield.
“I think he took a good step last year. I think he can take another step in terms of being a little more physical in terms of attacking the paint and attacking the rim and getting to the free throw line,” Kruger said.