Five things to know as Oklahoma basketball closes regular season at Texas

Steve Sisney for The Oklahoman / USA

The Big 12 regular season comes to a close this weekend, and for the Oklahoma basketball men that means a road trip to Austin, Texas, and a 2024 Red River Rivalry rematch with the Texas Longhorns.

This will be the 105th meeting on the hardwood between OU and Texas. The Sooners (20-10, 8-9) lead the overall series 56-47 but have lost the last six games and seven of the last eight in the series.

The Longhorns (19-11, 8-9) won the earlier game this season, 75-60, in Norman. Max Abmas scored 22 points in that game for Texas and Dylan Disu added 18. Jalon Moore was the high man for the Sooners with 15.

Oklahoma and Texas are currently sitting in the nine and eight positions, respectively in the Big 12 standings. Saturday's game could be a preview of a second-round matchup between these same two teams in next week's Big 12 Men's Tournament in Kansas City, Missouri.

The Sooners are coming off of a huge 74-71 come-from-behind win at home over Cincinnati on Tuesday. Texas fell 85-73 at Baylor earlier in the week. Saturday's rivalry matchup on the final weekend of the regular season not only has seeding implications for the Big 12 Tournament but also will have an impact on seeding for the NCAA Tournament.

The game is scheduled to tip off at 1:05 p.m. CT at the Moody Center in Austin, Texas, and will be televised on ESPN. Roxy Bernstein will do the play-by-play, and Chris Spatola will provide analysis.

Five things to know about Red River Rivalry Saturday

  • Oklahoma and Texas are fairly evenly matched all across the board statistically through all games. Both average around 76 points per game and hold opponents between 67 and 69 points defensively. Shooting percentage, free-throw percentage, rebounding, turnovers are strikingly similar. Makes you wonder why the game in Norman was so one-sided in favor of the Longhorns. A key matchup worth watching on Saturday in Texas' three-point shooting and Oklahoma's three-point shooting defense. Texas ranks third in the Big 12 in three-point percentage (36.3 percent); the Sooners lead the conference in defending the three-ball (29.3 percent).
  • Both teams have key starters who are questionable for Saturday's game. Oklahoma's leading scorer, Javian McCollum (13.6 per game) missed the Cincinnati game with a reported shoulder injury. He will be an important factor if Oklahoma is to win on the road in Austin. Fifth-year senior Dylan Disu left Texas' game at Baylor midway through the second half with an apparent leg injury. Longhorns' head coach said this week Disu will be a game-time decision. Disu averages 16.1 points and 4.8 rebounds per game.
  • Max Abmas transferred to Texas in the offseason after four seasons at Oral Roberts. He ranks third in the Big 12 in scoring and leads the Longhorns with 17.1 points per game. He scored a season-high 33 points and recorded four steals earlier this week against Baylor.
  • Oklahoma reserve Le'Tre Darthard earned the start in the Sooners' last game because of the injury to Javian McCollum. Darthard scored a team-high 18 points, including a clutch three-pointer to give Oklahoma just its second lead in the game, 67-66, with 15 seconds remaining in regulation. Over his last two games he's averaged 16.5 points a game.
  • The Sooners rank 41st in the NCAA NET rankings. Texas comes into Saturday's showdown with rival OU ranked 28th in NET.


As huge as this win would be for Oklahoma momentum heading into the Big 12 Tournament and the NCAA postseason, it's going to be a huge hurdle to get over, especially if Javian McColum is not available to play. OU has won at Texas before against good Longhorn teams, but that doesn't appear to be the case this season. Texas 77, Oklahoma 71