The Norman Transcript

Sports

January 18, 2013

Focus shifts from Kruger visiting Manhattan to Sooners playing ’Cats

NORMAN — The major storyline in Oklahoma’s last trip to Kansas State centered on its coach’s past. Lon Kruger is one of the most decorated players in Wildcats history along with being a former coach.

After Oklahoma’s 81-63 victory over Texas Tech on Wednesday at Lloyd Noble Center, the present has much more significance.

The Sooners (12-3, 3-0 Big 12) can match their longest conference winning streak since 2009 with a victory Saturday at Bramlage Coliseum. The 16th-ranked Wildcats (14-2, 3-0) can win their eighth straight.

Kruger wants to focus on the teams and the huge game they’ll play Saturday. Coaching against his alma mater in its own arena is something he did for the first time last season. The novelty of it was hard for anyone to ignore. Even with the Sooners’ claiming a 63-60 victory, Kruger wasn’t comfortable with the attention being placed on him. He was ready for it to go away.

“I think that fades with each year,” Kruger said Thursday. “It’s an important Big 12 game for both teams.”

It’s the biggest one OU has played in several seasons because of the potential ramifications. Besides another possible conference win, this one has the potential to vault the Sooners into the Top 25 for the first time since November of 2009. A team that has flown under the radar has the chance to get on the screen. It’s been so long since that’s been the case that only seniors Steven Pledger and Andrew Fitzgerald have been part of an OU team that was ranked.

Getting OU back to that level is where Kruger’s focus lies.

“We are playing better basketball right now and the challenge is to keep doing that and everything else will take care of itself,” he said. “We need to focus on playing better each possession and certainly you have to do that especially on the road in a tough place.”

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Sports
  • _Y_R3186 Sooners succumb to Longhorns in run-rule shutout

    Oklahoma had its chances. The Sooners put eight runners on base Friday night against Texas, several times with no outs. And stranded every one of them....

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • OU draws even in rout of West Virginia

    As Oklahoma’s players jogged back to the dugout following the top of the first inning against West Virginia, no one appeared overly excited. It was the classic case of masking the emotions....

    April 19, 2014

  • North’s Barrett on track for great stuff

    It was after the guy working the PA at John Jacobs Field Friday afternoon understood The Norman Transcript was in the house when he began singing the praises of Norman North’s Ben Barrett....

    April 19, 2014

  • Pistons Thunder Basketball Thunder set to take on unlikely rival in Memphis

    It’s become an unlikely rivalry. There is no reason for Oklahoma City and Memphis to have an ongoing feud, except that they do and the numbers seem to bear it out....

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Sooners advance to Super Six

    BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — Oklahoma, Georgia and LSU advanced to the Super Six of the NCAA women’s gymnastics championships....

    April 19, 2014

  • Woodard powers through

    For most of Friday afternoon, Norman North’s Haley Woodard, the day after notching a goal and an assist against Edmond Santa Fe, was lying down and feeling  sick under the North track and field team’s canopy at John Jacobs Field....

    April 19, 2014

  • Can the Heat flip the switch?

    MIAMI — LeBron James was walking down the hallway that the Miami Heat call “Championship Alley” a few minutes after last season’s NBA Finals, when he decided the time was right to send a message. It wasn’t for his fans....

    April 19, 2014

  • No April, May or June Madness in NBA

    AP National Writer ATLANTA — If the playoff-bound Atlanta Hawks were in any other sport, they might have a glimmer of hope for winning a championship. The NBA? No way....

    April 19, 2014

  • Warriors and Clippers take mutual dislike into playoff series

    LOS ANGELES — As much as the Los Angeles Clippers and Golden State Warriors don’t like each other, they’re a lot alike in some ways....

    April 19, 2014

  • OU V Texas Casey sparks Sooners at the plate against Longhorns

    Oklahoma put runners in scoring position all night, but midway through Thursday’s series opener against Texas, the Sooners couldn’t do much with them. Heading into the bottom of the fifth, they had stranded a handful of runners, including ...

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

Facebook