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Oklahoma Sooners Basketball vs. UTSA: Preview, Game Thread & How to Watch

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Will Lon Kruger top another protégé?

Big 12 Basketball Tournament - First Round
KANSAS CITY, MO - MARCH 08: Head coach Lon Kruger of the Oklahoma Sooners reacts from the bench during the first round game of the Big 12 Basketball Tournament against the TCU Horned Frogs at the Sprint Center on March 8, 2017 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images

The Oklahoma Sooners opened the season with a win at UTRGV this past Friday, but things likely won’t be quite as easy when they take on the UTSA Roadrunners of Conference USA.

Oklahoma at UT-Rio Grande Valley: 7 p.m. at Convocation Center (2,650)

TV: CBS Sports Network

Commentary: John Sadak and Pete Gillen

Live Stream: CBSSports.com

Radio: Sooner Radio Network (KRXO 107.7 FM “The Franchise” in Oklahoma City; KTBZ 1430 AM in Tulsa)

Line: Oklahoma -9 (as of 4:45 CT)

About UTSA

  • The Roadrunners are coached by longtime Kruger assistant Steve Henson, who is in his third season in San Antonio. This is the second consecutive game in which the Sooners will face a former OU assistant, as OU opened the season with a 91-76 win at UTRGV (coached by Lew Hill).
  • UTSA is No. 166 in the KenPom rankings after a one-point loss to St. Edwards in its season opener. By comparison, UTRGV is No. 316, while Oklahoma is currently No. 49.
  • Henson led the ‘Runners to a 14-19 record in his first season, but the team improved to 20-15 with a 5th-place CUSA finish in 2017-18.
  • In last season’s matchup in Norman, Oklahoma came out on top by a score of 97-85. In total, 79 three-pointers were attempted in the contest.

Storylines

  • Can Christian keep it going? - Christian James was fantastic in the opener, scoring a career-high 29 on 9-17 shooting. It’s not reasonable to expect him to keep rolling at that clip, but he’ll need to continue to be a confident and assertive player if OU is going to be successful.
  • Manek’s offense - Brady Manek looked stronger and more physical en route to recording his first career double-double against UTRGV, but what still remains to be seen is whether or not he will be a bit less streaky as a shooter in his sophomore season. There are certainly no complaints about a 2-5 start in that department. Manek also appeared to be more active in the post offensively, which was a necessary addition to his game.
  • Foul trouble - Kristian Doolittle showed some good things on the court against UTRGV, but he unfortunately only saw 13 minutes of action before fouling out of the game. It’s something he’s had an issue with in the past, so it’s difficult to look at it as an anomaly. I’m sure it’s something the staff has addressed. Will he adjust his game accordingly?

Looking Ahead

Oklahoma will finally play a regular-season game in Norman when the Sooners face the Wofford Terriers this coming Sunday at 1 p.m. You can catch the game on FOX Sports Oklahoma, but you might be able to enjoy a beer or two if you make it to the LNC.