Oklahoma basketball: Notable numbers from OU’s last-in, first-out journey to the tourney

PITTSBURGH, PA - MARCH 15: Trae Young /

The Oklahoma basketball loss to Rhode Island on Thursday in the first round of the NCAA Tournament was not the way the Sooners envisioned the season ending.

Rewind back to Jan. 13. The Sooners had just beaten TCU for the second time to improve their season record to 14-2. The following week they rose to No. 4 in the country in the Associated Press rankings.

At that point in the season, Oklahoma not only was considered a virtual lock to make the NCAA Tournament, and as a likely high seed, but also a primary challenger to Kansas for the Big 12 regular-season crown. That was also the step off point for one of the biggest collapses in more than 100 years of OU basketball.

After Jan. 13, the Sooners won just four of the next 16 games, including the 83-78 overtime loss to Rhode Island. OU was one of the last teams to make it into this year’s NCAA Men’s Tournament and was the first of the 64 teams to bow out.

Sooner Superman Trae Young had a big game in what is likely to be his final college game. The OU freshman point guard scored a game-high 28 points, his 25th game (out of 32) with 20 or more points. Young scored at least 28 points in 16 games this season. Oklahoma won 11 of those games, but not the NCAA Tournament game against No. 7-seeded Rhode Island.

Young may not go down as the greatest player in Sooner basketball history, but he surely has established himself as a starter on Oklahoma’s All-Time All-OU Team. One day in the future we should see Young’s No. 11 hanging from the rafters at Lloyd Noble Center or elsewhere.

Here are some numbers that mattered from OU’s one-and-done appearance in the 2018 NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship:

3 – Head coach Lon Kruger has taken five Oklahoma teams to the NCAA Tournament. Three of those teams have lost in their opening game, including this season against Rhode Island.

5Trae Young made three of nine three-point shots in Thursday’s NCAA Tournament game, finishing his freshman season with 118 made three-pointers, five shy of breaking Stephan Curry’s NCAA freshman record of 122.

14-10-2 – Points, rebounds and blocked shots by OU redshirt junior Jamuni McNeace in 33 minutes of action against Rhode Island.

14 – Turnovers by Oklahoma, which led to 17 Rhode Island points.

16 – There were 16 lead changes in the OU-Rhode Island game.

20 – Oklahoma launched 20 three-point shots against Rhode Island and made just four, or 20 percent, of their three-point attempts

22 – Second-chance points by the Sooners, to go along with 20 fast-break points.

25:04 – Minutes that Oklahoma led in Thursday’s NCAA Tournament game with Rhode Island.

40-32 – Oklahoma all-time record in NCAA Tournament games after the opening-round loss this year to Rhode Island.

48 – Points in the paint by Oklahoma against Rhode Island, more than half of the Sooners 78 total points in the game.