In spite of everything that’s happened in Big 12 play, the Oklahoma Sooners are still in a position to secure an NCAA Tournament bid in 2019. However, a loss against the West Virginia Mountaineers would pretty much throw that out the window.
Remember to #ArriveSooner and be in your seats 15 minutes before the game Saturday for our Senior Day ceremony! #Sooners and West Virginia tip at 1 CT.— Oklahoma Basketball (@OU_MBBall) March 2, 2019
Oklahoma (17-11, 5-10 Big 12) vs. West Virginia (11-17, 3-12 Big 12): 1 p.m. CT at Lloyd Noble Center (Norman, Okla.)
Commentary: Clay Matvick and Tim Welsh
Live Stream: WatchESPN
Radio: Sooner Radio Network (107.7 FM ‘The Franchise’ in Oklahoma City; KTBZ 1430 AM in Tulsa; Tune In Radio App) with Toby Rowland and Kevin Henry announcing
Line: Oklahoma -10 (as of 10:40 a.m. CT)
About West Virginia
- Injuries and inexperience have resulted in a forgettable season in Morgantown. Coming into the season, Bob Huggins’ team was going to be largely reliant on rim protector Sagaba Konate, but has been sidelined since early December with a knee injury. Then there’s junior guard James Bolden, a steals artist who has missed the last month of action for the Mountaineers with a high ankle sprain. Freshman Derek Culver has picked up some of the slack in Konate’s absence, while Lamont West has upped his scoring output as of late.
- West Virginia comes in at No. 118 in the KenPom ratings. That’s the worst in the Big 12, and considering the Mountaineers defeated the Sooners in the first meeting of the season, a loss today would obviously be devastating to Oklahoma’s NCAA Tournament hopes.
- Speaking of that first meeting, WVU dominated OU on the glass 46-30, 18-7 on the offensive boards. Freshman guard Brandon Knapper came off the bench and lit the Sooners up for 25 points. Oklahoma needs to get out to a quicker start in this one to avoid giving the Mountaineers confidence.
- This is a major game for the Sooners in terms of the NCAA Tournament. If the regular season ended before this one tips off, Oklahoma would likely be in the bracket, but alas, there are games to play, and this one is a must-win for those Big Dance hopes. According to SB Nation’s Chris Dobbertean, ESPN’s Joe Lunardi and CBS Sports’ Jerry Palm, OU would be a No. 10 seed with its current resume. Needless to say, Lon Kruger’s team could use any win it can get to stay afloat, but today’s game is especially crucial.
- Today is Senior Day for Oklahoma, even though it is not the final home game of the season for the Sooners. It’s probably for the best, considering it’s the game with the best win potential remaining on the schedule. Notable seniors being honored today include Christian James, Jamuni McNeace, and Rashard Odomes.