Oklahoma basketball: Sooners look to reverse fortunes in West Virginia rematch

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MORGANTOWN, WV – JANUARY 06: Rashard Odomes

Home has been sweet for Oklahoma basketball this season. The Sooners are 11-0 at Lloyd Noble Center this season and have not lost in 14 consecutive games at home.

Oklahoma’s 14-game home winning streak is the sixth longest active streak among teams from major conferences.

West Virginia is the last team to beat Oklahoma at home, and the Mountaineers (17-6. 6-4) are OU’s opponent on Monday night. The last time these two teams met, on Jan. 6 at West Virginia The home team prevailed 89-76. Trae Young scored 29 points, along with five assists and eight turnovers, but no other Sooner had more than 12 points.

The Sooners, ranked 17th in this week’s Associated Press Top 25, are one of two Big 12 teams that have not lost at home this season (Texas Tech is the other). Oklahoma’s performance at home is in stark contrast to its road performance, where the Sooners are just 1-4 in Big 12 play and have not won since edging TCU by a single point in the conference opener for both teams.

Oklahoma is 5-0 at home this season in conference play and over that stretch is averaging 93.8 points a game, 49.4 percent from the field and 48.8 percent from behind the three-point line. In five Big 12 road games, the Sooners are averaging just a little over 77 points per contest on 42.6 percent shooting overall and a highly pedestrian 30 percent from beyond the arc.

Those facts alone are enough to establish the Sooners as the favorite in their Monday rematch with the more seasoned Mountaineers.

OU and West Virginia have met just 15 times on the hardwood, 13 times as members of the Big 12. The Sooners are 8-5 against the Mountaineers in Big 12 play, and 4-1 when the two schools play in Norman.

In the first meeting earlier this season, West Virginia’s patented pressure defense held Trae Young down for much of the game and definitely disrupted his offensive rhythm, but the OU super frosh, the prohibitive favorite to be named Player of the Year in college basketball, still managed to ring up 29 points, but also committed eight turnovers.

It took Young 22 shots from the field and 10 of 13 from the free-throw line to earn those 29 points, and he was just of three of 12 from long range, well below his season average.

In that same game, West Virginia freshman Teddy Allen came off the bench and scored a team-high 20 points, and three other Mountaineers contributed 16 or more points to the winning effort.

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