Happy Hump Day, friends and fans!
On Wednesday, the Oklahoma Sooners men’s basketball team officially announced it will host the Alabama Crimson Tide in the eighth annual Big 12/SEC Challenge on Saturday, Jan. 30, 2021. All-time, OU is 5-2 in this yearly, inter-conference event.
Against the Tide, the Sooners are 5-3 in the all-time hoops series. The most recent meeting between the schools came in 2018, featuring a Collin Sexton-led Alabama team defeating Trae Young and his Oklahoma squad in Tuscaloosa. Today, both guards are continuing to grow their respective games in the NBA.
A full 2020-21 season schedule for OU is expected to release soon, with the on-court fun set to begin some time in late November.
Now onto today’s Hot Links! The Sooners prepare for a classic duel between offense and defense in Fort Worth, Oklahoma has embraced this long stint away from the Palace on the Prairie, Tua is set to start for the ‘Phins and more!
- Lincoln Riley clearly isn’t messing around this week as evidenced by his lightning quick recall in Teddy Lehman’s weekly Butkus Brain Teaser. This clue took things back to 2018, where Kyler Murray led Oklahoma to a win over the TCU Horned Frogs. On Saturday, Spencer Rattler will attempt to do the same thing in the same place.
- Speaking of Riley, for years he’s gone toe-to-toe with Gary Patterson in an ongoing battle of dynamic offense versus smart defense. It’s this aspect of the matchup that makes this series especially unique within the Big 12 Conference, writes SI Sooners’ John Hoover.
- Heartland College Sports’ Matthew Postins drew up his own preview and prediction for Oklahoma’s upcoming contest at TCU. Check out which players for each side he expects to play key roles in the matchup, as well as which team he ultimately sees coming out on top.
- Senior RB Rhamondre Stevenson is expected to return to the team eventually this season following a lengthy suspension. When he finally makes his way back into Sooners’ the backfield, how could that affect Oklahoma’s running game? The Tulsa World’s Eric Bailey takes a look at the possibilities.
- The Norman Transcript’s Joe Buettner recently wrote about how Spencer Rattler is embracing OU’s extended road trip. With how the 2020 season is configured, there will be 42 days in between Oklahoma’s last home game (K-State) and its next one (Kansas).
- OU Insider’s RJ Young took a closer look into recent comments made by Lincoln Riley regarding his 2020 squad. With how young and relatively inexperienced many of the primary contributors are, the head coach expressed his growing belief in the Sooners’ potential.
Around the Sports World
- A former Austin American-Statesman photographer is reportedly suing the owners and handlers of Bevo — the Texas Longhorns’ live mascot — after allegedly suffering permanent injuries by the charging steer prior to the 2019 Sugar Bowl.
- On Tuesday, the Miami Dolphins named rookie Tua Tagovailoa starter at QB for their upcoming game against the Los Angeles Rams following an off-week.
- The Indiana Pacers have reportedly hired former Toronto Raptors assistant Nate Bjorkgren as the team’s next head coach after parting ways with Nate McMillan in late August.
- The availability for Dallas Cowboys LT Brandon Knight and RG Zack Martin against the Washington Football Team is in question after both offensive linemen suffered injuries in Monday night’s blowout loss to the Arizona Cardinals.
- Super Bowl LV is currently scheduled to kick off Feb. 7 in Tampa, Florida, but if more NFL games continue to be delayed due to COVID-19, there are contingency plans in place that could postpone the big game to as late as Mar. 7.
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