NORMAN — Over the past 12 months the Oklahoma State men’s basketball team has learned plenty of lessons.
Today they hope to learn from the most important one learned from a year ago — there is no tomorrow if you don’t win today.
“I’m aware of the type of team we have. I think we have a chance to go deep in this tournament,” Cowboy senior Markel Brown said. “But we’ve got to take it one game at a time. Last year, we looked ahead.
“We don’t want to do that this year. We don’t want to write anyone off before the game is played. We want to just go out there and play one game at a time.”
That first game is against a Gonzaga squad that has a similar personnel from a game the Bulldogs won in Stillwater to close out the non-conference squad last season.
“We lost a close game here at home. We know they’re well-coached — Mark Few is one of the best coaches in the country,” OSU sophomore Phil Forte said. “Gonzaga’s one of the best programs, year in and year out. We know we have our hands full the first round.”
Sophomore post player Kamari Murphy may have the most daunting test for the Cowboys.
Gonzaga sports a pair of posts that combine for 25 points per game and 14 rebounds a contest in 6-foot-9 center Sam Dower — with team highs in points, 15, and rebounds, 7.1 — and 7-1 center Przemek Karnowski — who averages 10.2 points and 6.9 rebounds.
“Gonzaga keeps good bigs. Last year we had to deal with Kelly Olynyk. Dower, that’s another workhorse I have to deal with,” Murphy said. “We’ve got to play our game. They’ve got to guard us, too, our quickness and speed at the bigs positions. It should be a good matchup.”