NORMAN — Oklahoma women’s basketball coach Sherri Coale is fairly adamant. Not only is nobody going to replace Whitney Hand in the Sooner lineup, nor will the mantel of leadership fall too hard atop any particular Sooner’s shoulders.
“It has to be more than one,” she said.
Yet as true as that may be, one may feel the responsibility in the way others don’t. If so, that player is junior point guard Morgan Hook.
It’s as natural as such a fit as can be. Already, the point guard position demands leadership. Also, alongside Hand, Hook was already a co-team captain.
“I think my role has changed,” Hook said. “In practice, I can’t come in and be quiet at all. Without (Hand’s) voice out there, it’s evident if I’m not talking. I don’t think it puts pressure on me, but I have to step up and be more of a leader.”
It would seem to be even more important in games and the Sooners have one today, their first since Hand tore the ACL in her left knee 10 days ago against North Texas.
Vanderbilt (7-3) and OU (8-1) tip off at 2 p.m. inside Lloyd Noble Center. The Commodores began the season in the Top 25 but dropped out after three connective losses to No. 17 Dayton, Florida State and Virginia, a trio of teams with a combined record of 23-4.
Beyond being a point guard, Hook may even be the right kind of point guard: a steady one.
Nine games into the season, Hook is averaging 11.2 points per outing, and 3.6 assists against 2.3 turnovers per game. She’s hitting 45.3 percent of her shots and 40.5 percent of her 3-point chances. All solid numbers.
Now she’s looking to up that productivity a little while grabbing hold of the leadership reins.