Game 30: No. 13 Kansas at Oklahoma – Preview and Prediction

Hot off of a come-from-behind win at Oklahoma State, the Jayhawks look to put together their first back-to-back road wins of the 2019 season when they walk into the Lloyd Noble Center this Tuesday. “The Streak” is also on its last straw, and a Jayhawks loss would officially eliminate them from the race with just one game left.

AUDIO PREVIEW: LINK (go to 69:30 minute mark of podcast)

Game Info and Notes:

  • Tuesday, March 5th, 2019 at 8:00 PM CDT
  • Lloyd Noble Center, Norman, Okla.
  • ESPN2
  • This will be the 150th meeting between Kansas and Oklahoma, with KU leading the all-time series 106-43. Last season the teams split their two matchups.
About the Sooners

Oklahoma is 18-11 (6-10 Big 12) coming into this game, but the Sooners are trending up and on the verge of an NCAA Tournament bid. OU lost five consecutive games spanning from January 28 to February 11, but are winners in three of their last four contests.

The Sooners are led by senior guard Christian James, who averages 15.1 points a game along with 6.6 rebounds. Oklahoma shoots 35% from behind the arc and 44% from the field. The Sooners

Sooners to Watch

Christian James – Senior, Guard, 6’4″
James is playing his best basketball of his four years at OU, and it just so happens to be his senior night as well. In his freshman season, Christian James averaged just 2.9 points per gam. that tally is up to 15, making him a crucial piece to OU coming out of this one with a win.

Brady Manek – Sophomore, Forward, 6’9″
Brady Manek is a guy we can expect to drain a lot of threes, and looks exactly like Celtics great Larry Bird. Manek averages 6.2 boards per game, and just shy of one assist. Coming off of an ineptitude to guard the three ball against the Pokes, Kansas has to put emphasis on getting good defensive switches against a player like this.

Prediction

Kansas 78 – Oklahoma 70

The last time these two programs met, the Jayhawks still had their heralded talent in Udoka Azubuike and Lagerald Vick. With Azubuike’s wrist surgery and Vick’s leave of absence, the Jayhawks must find other guys to take down the Sooners this time.

Look no further than Quentin Grimes in this one. Coming off arguably his best outing since Michigan State in November, the highly touted freshman guard is looking more comfortable with each game. After 12 vs Kansas State and 17 at Oklahoma State, Grimes has an opportunity to take off on Tuesday night. We can expect Dedric Lawson to be heavily defended once again, but without big-man Udoka Azubuike in the lineup this time around, Lon Kruger of the Sooners will have to find a strategy other than the “Poke-A-Doke.” Expect this one to pick up offensively, as both teams can stroke the ball when the pace is up there.

The Jayhawks must win tonight to muster any hope of a conference title. Although with a win, this one will surely send them back to Allen Fieldhouse, and the Big 12 Tournament, with high spirits.

Nick Weippert

Just a typical teenager that thinks above the box. Probably have to deal with more Kansas State fans than you do. I love playing sports and also sharing about my passions through writing. I also do a little bit of graphic design work.