Happy Monday, friends and fans!
I can’t say I’m too surprised, but it sure didn’t take long for Trae Young to notch his first 30-point game as a pro. Just a year ago he was a freshman phenom for his hometown Oklahoma Sooners. Last evening, he lit up an NBA scoreboard, and he did so with efficiency — something that wasn’t particularly a strong suit for him down the stretch of his freshman season. In fact, Young only turned it over on one occasion while going 13-23 from the field in Atlanta’s win over the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Check out some of the highlights from Young’s career night against the Cavs:
According to ESPN Stats and Info, Young is the 5th rookie with at least 35 points and 10 assists in a game over the last 25 seasons. The other four? Oh, just a bunch of all-time greats in Steph Curry, LeBron James, Allen Iverson and Jason Kidd. Get your popcorn ready.
Now we move on to this week’s Monday edition of Hot Links! Trey Sermon’s playing status is still uncertain, the crimson end zones are back, Oklahoma State’s uniforms against Texas will be a blast from the past, and more!
- Trey Sermon was sidelined late in the game last Saturday with an apparent leg injury, and on Monday Lincoln Riley said there was no further update on his starting running back’s status.
- Kennedy Brooks has been named the Big 12 Newcomer of the Week, while Kyler Murray was once again named the conference’s offensive Player of the Week. Granted, only two games were played, but Brooks and Murray were both fantastic, and Brooks had to top Tech QB Alan Bowman for the Newcomer honor.
- Tre Brown played with a heavy heart on Saturday after his mom passed away earlier in the week, but his teammates were there with him every step of the way for support.
- Kyler Murray is once again the Pro Football Focus QB of the week after another stellar performance, although this time it came against the top-ranked defense in the Big 12.
- The wonky scheduling delayed the debut a bit, but starting with this weekend’s game against Kansas State, Owen Field will finally be sporting the oh-so-sleek crimson end zones.
Let's try this again. After playing with the green endzones against Baylor, OU will debut their crimson endzones this week against K-State. pic.twitter.com/v5HoUtnn3l— Sooner Tracker (@SoonerTracker) October 22, 2018
- Just like last season in Manhattan, Gus Johnson and Joel Klatt will call Oklahoma’s game against Kansas State. If Kennedy Brooks goes completely off, will Gus give him a nickname, too?
FOX's Gus Johnson, Joel Klatt and Jenny Taft are on the call for #Sooners-KSU this weekend.— Tyler Palmateer (@Tpalmateer83) October 22, 2018
- According to college football guru Phil Steele, Oklahoma has played like a top-four team when factoring yards and point differential with opponents played.
My Current Average Game Grade rankings.— Phil Steele (@philsteele042) October 22, 2018
1. Alabama 117.9
2. Clemson 111.3
3. Michigan 110.9
4. Oklahoma 106.2
5. Georgia 104.8
6. Ohio St 103.3
7. Texas A&M 102.6
8. Iowa 102.39
9. Washington 101.1
10. Utah 101.02
Takes into account yards & points and most importantly, opponent
- Although there were some serious issues on special teams and defense in the second quarter, the second half of the season is off to a nice start. Also, the transition from Mike Stoops to Ruffin McNeill is looking like the right move so far.
- Buddy Hield scored 17 points to help the Sacramento Kings nab a road victory over the OKC Thunder. As an honorary Oklahoman for life, the fans’ love for Buddy is still strong.
Around the Sports World
- Speaking of the Thunder, they’ve started the NBA season 0-3, but there is reason not to panic. Worry? Absolutely. Panic? Not quite.
- One of the very best things about sports is the schadenfreude, and it doesn’t get any more glorious than in college football. This week, Ohio State’s loss to Purdue has left the rest of us with some absolute gems.
- TCU receiver KaVontae Turpin was arrested on Sunday for domestic assault of a family member. Turpin is one of the Horned Frogs’ top skill players.
- Honoring Heisman Trophy winner Barry Sanders for Homecoming, Oklahoma State is going with some 80s throwback uniforms for the Cowboys’ primetime showdown against the Texas Longhorns. I’m not gonna lie... this is pretty great.
- The debate over the best way to rank college football teams is a back-and-forth affair. How can strength of schedule be determined if there are multiple ways to define the strength of a schedule? Bill Connelly works his magic to tie the worlds of the eye-test and stats together.
- Which Week 9 college football games will have the most to say about the upcoming CFP rankings, and which games are probably not going to matter as much?
- Speaking of the OKC, if this doesn’t absolutely break your heart, it’s probably because you lack one. Resident Kiwi Steven Adams can only shake hands with the spirit of his former Thunder buddy Enes Kanter during the pregame. And see, even Kanter’s emoji is sad. Why must the world be so unfair? Reunite these two at once!
- Former Colorado Buffalo and Carolina Panthers wide receiver Rae Carruth has been released from prison after serving 18 years for conspiracy to murder the mother of his unborn child.
- Giant pups who think they’re small lap dogs might be my favorite kind of pooch. Check out New York Yankees pitcher CC Sabathia’s sheepdog just chilling on the aforementioned CC Sabathia.
CC's dog is an absolute unit. pic.twitter.com/CrBA0rCjDe— Russell Steinberg (@Russ_Steinberg) October 22, 2018
Stick to Sports!
- 16-year-old Joseph Saelee is now the Tetris World Champion after defeating seven-time champion Jonas Neubauer. It’s pretty epic stuff, and it’s even more impressive when you realize Saelee has only been actively competing in the Tetris arena less than a year.
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