The start was less that ideal, but the Oklahoma Sooners were eventually able to assert their dominance over the inferior Kansas State Wildcats as they cruised to a 76-50 victory. The win improved OU’s record to 8-4 overall and 4-3 in Big 12 play.
As is typically the case under Lon Kruger, the Sooners favor pace, so when Bruce Weber’s young K-State team was able to muddy things up and dictate the tempo, a feeling of dread surely began to permeate the heads of OU hoops fans. With the Wildcats leading by a score of 22-17 with about six minutes remaining in the first half, OU’s offense was completely out of rhythm, but a De’Vion Harmon bucket on a fast break seemed to shift the tide shortly thereafter. The Sooners would close the half on a 15-2 run and were off and running from that point forward.
The Sooners were once again able to distance themselves from a big 12 opponent by earning a decisive win in the turnover department, holding a 20-7 advantage. Austin Reaves was quite helpful in this regard, as the senior point guard recorded three steals while turning it over only twice in the point guard role. The Newark, Ark. native finished the night with only eight points, but his seven assists highlighted his improvement as a creator and facilitator in his new role.
Harmon was undoubtedly the star of the night for the Sooners, scoring 16 points on 6/11 shooting. Kur Kuath also continued to demonstrate his improved game, scoring 12 points on 6/9 shooting while blocking five shots. However, one of the unsung heroes of the night was Elijah Harkless, who grabbed 13 rebounds and dished out six assists while starting at the four spot.
Then, of course, there was Alondes Williams, whose solid 13-point outing largely occurred above the rim.
The victory sets up a big Saturday showdown in Norman against the No. 9 Kansas Jayhawks, who narrowly escaped the Sooners in Lawrence just over a week ago. The game is set to tip off at 11 a.m. and will air on ESPN.