The Norman Transcript


January 22, 2014

Sooners emerge from tough stint with a chance to keep momentum going

NORMAN — A brutal stretch of Oklahoma’s schedule ended Saturday afternoon in Waco, Texas. The victory over Baylor ended a five-game stretch (with three of the games on the road) where OU played four teams that have been ranked and a fifth — Texas — that likely could be next week.

Exiting the meat grinder at 14-4 overall, 3-2 in the Big 12 Conference and still ranked No. 25 was a feat for the Sooners.

Things should get easier this week. But the games will only be as easy as OU allows them to be.

“We have to keep our momentum. We can’t let one of these drop. We can’t look past these games,” OU forward Ryan Spangler said.

The Sooners return to Lloyd Noble Center at 8 p.m. today to face TCU (9-8, 0-5). On paper, it’s a game they should win. After all, the Horned Frogs are the only Big 12 team without a league victory, and their last four games have ended in double-digit losses.

Ignoring TCU’s results is the first task for the Sooners. Spangler’s right, they have built momentum since conference play began. Not only are they ranked for the second straight week, they moved up to No. 16 in the Ratings Percentage Index. They’ve created the scenario where they can have a pretty good seed for the NCAA tournament.

But the tournament is still eight weeks away. A lot can change in that period of time. One thing that can greatly change OU’s outlook are bad losses.

They don’t need to look any further than last season to fully understand the ramifications of taking TCU lightly. OU lost to the Horned Frogs in the 2013 regular-season finale. It didn’t keep them from dancing, but the loss did sink its seed and OU never really recovered from it. The TCU loss was the first of three straight to end the season.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
  • 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

  • Tigers take series with Timberwolves

    Heather Jones made her final Crosstown Clash contest a game to remember....

    April 18, 2014

  • Shannon won’t face criminal charges

    Oklahoma linebacker Frank Shannon will not face criminal charges for an alleged sexual assault. Any punishment he receives will be through the University....

    April 18, 2014

  • Offense disappears in shutout loss to Mountaineers

    Everything Oklahoma did Thursday night looked rushed. It fell behind quickly, hacked at pitches early in counts and even recorded outs in a time-efficient manner....

    April 18, 2014

  • Sooners eager for title shot

    After fighting all season long to stay near the top of the women’s gymnastics rankings, the time has come for Oklahoma to show it belongs there. The NCAA Women’s Gymnastics Championships kick-off at 1 p.m. today and the second ranked ...

    April 18, 2014

  • North girls escape with win over ESF

    EDMOND — Ranked No. 5 in the state and the winners of six straight games, three of them over top 10 teams, the Norman North girls looked every bit the dominant team Thursday night at Edmond Santa Fe … right up until they flirted with ...

    April 18, 2014

  • Fieger leads Senior PGA

    PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. — Gene Fieger shot a 3-under 69 in windy conditions Thursday to take a four-stroke lead in the Senior PGA Professional National Championship....

    April 18, 2014

  • Kuchar builds on momentum

    HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. — There were no major letdowns for Masters contenders Matt Kuchar and Jordan Spieth at the RBC Heritage on Thursday. Kuchar, who tied for fifth at Augusta National, shot a bogey-free 5-under 66 to share the ...

    April 18, 2014

  • Angel Jimenez set for Champions Tour debut

    DULUTH, Ga. — Miguel Angel Jimenez’s starring role in the best Masters ever for players 50 and over was the perfect lead-in for his Champions Tour debut....

    April 18, 2014

  • Puig focuses on baseball despite issues

    SAN FRANCISCO — Yasiel Puig believes he has the support from his Los Angeles Dodgers teammates and the club to help him keep his focus on baseball despite challenges off the field....

    April 18, 2014