— Oklahoma women's basketball fell for the first time in Big 12 play as Kansas State defeated the Sooners, 86-56, inside Bramlage Coliseum on Saturday.,OU was limited to a season-low .280 clip (14-of-50) from the field and finished 5-for-22 (.227) from deep, while K-State (10-4, 1-1 Big 12) finished with a .542 field goal percentage and was 11-of-23 (.478) from 3-point range.,OU fell down early to open the game, but brought the Kansas State advantage down to 15-13 late in the first quarter.,OU's 22 points in the first half were the fewest scored by the Sooners in a half this season.,The Wildcats won the battle in the paint, 36-12, and scored 32 points off of OU miscues.
In their first season in Indianapolis, head coach Frank Reich, left, and offensive coordinator and Jamestown native Nick Sirianni have guided the Colts into the playoffs.,Father Fran, a member of the Chautauqua Sports Hall of Fame, coached Southwestern High School from the mid-1970s to the early 1980s; brother Mike is the head coach at Washington & Jefferson College where he has compiled one of the best winning percentages in the NCAA; and brother Jay coached Southwestern to a pair of New York State Public High School Athletic Association championships in 2008 and 2009.,Once the youngest Sirianni arrived at the University of Mount Union, he played for Larry Kehres, who guided the Purple Raiders to 11 national championships in his career.,Upon his graduation, Sirianni began his climb up the coaching ranks with stops at Mount Union, Indiana University of Pennsylvania, the Kansas Chiefs and the San Diego/Los Angeles Chargers, before joining Reich’s staff in Indianapolis last February.,“One of the reasons I’m in the position I’m in now is because of the successful coaches I’ve been around, starting with growing up in a coach’s house, learning how to coach with my brothers, and then, obviously, playing for the most successful coach in NCAA football history in Larry Kehres,” he told The Post-Journal last October.
The 237th Bedlam meeting will tip at 1 p.m. CT in OU’s first Saturday home game of the season.,• OU has won 19 of its last 21 games inside Lloyd Noble Center and 21 of its last 23 “home” games (includes victories in OKC and Tulsa).,• Saturday’s matchup is just OU’s fourth game at Lloyd Noble Center this season.,• Oklahoma averages 35.8 paint points per game and is averaging 41.0 paint points over its last four games.,• Oklahoma is 8-2 in games away from Norman this season (includes “home” victories in OKC and Tulsa).
Freshman guard Taylor Robertson ranks fourth in the Big 12 in scoring with 18.4 points per game this season and leads the conference with 54 made 3-pointers.,• Sophomore guard Shaina Pellington has paced the Sooners offensively over the last five games, averaging 18.7 points, 5.8 rebounds and 4.4 assists per contest.,• Robertson's eight 3-pointers against WKU in the Sooners' season opener set an OU single-game record for a freshman, besting the previous mark of seven held by Morgan Hook (Stephen F. Austin, 2010-11) and Derica Wyatt (UT-Arlington, 2013-14).,• Llanusa averaged 12.6 points per game as a freshman last season, earning Big 12 All-Freshman Team and All-Big 12 Honorable mention honors.,• Pellington has scored in double figures in 11 of OU's 12 games this season, ranking sixth in the Big 12 with 17.0 points per game.
Playing its first game as a ranked team this season, No. 23 Oklahoma owns eight wins away from Norman while facing the second toughest strength of schedule according to the NCAA NET Rankings.,• Oklahoma is off to its fourth start of 11-1 (or better) during Kruger’s eight seasons as head coach (also third in the last four seasons).,• Oklahoma is 8-1 in games away from Norman this season (includes “home” victories in OKC and Tulsa).,• Oklahoma averages 34.6 paint points per game and is averaging 44.0 paint points over its last three games.,• Oklahoma has won 19 of its last 21 games inside Lloyd Noble Center and 21 of its last 23 “home” games (includes victories in OKC and Tulsa).
Firing Steve Alford was the easy part.Finding a marquee replacement for a once-proud program that has become ignored and irrelevant is going to be the hard part.UCLA axed its embattled basketball coach in a rare midseason change Monday, two days after a 15-point loss to Liberty in front of fans who filled Pauley Pavilion with boos.,While the move mercifully ended Alfords five-plus year tenure, one marked by consistent underachievement despite three Sweet 16 appearances, the Bruins real challenge lies ahead.They have to convince a worthy candidate they can provide an environment that will empower him to restore glory to a championship culture that has clearly lost its way.I never thought I would write this, but the stark reality is that coaching the UCLA mens basketball team is not a great job.Your bosses seem to care more about football.,The schools support of the program has lagged such that when the Bruins traveled to Dayton, Ohio, for an NCAA Tournament play-in game last March, the pep band didnt even make the trip.In ways that stretch far beyond the current 23-year national championship drought the longest since before Wooden stepped on campus the reality is as chilling as the malaise that often runs through Pauley when the team occupies the floor.UCLA basketball is no longer UCLA basketball.The most important, yet trickiest, task of Dan Guerreros tenure as UCLA athletic director will be to find somebody with the coaching chops and public charisma to change all that.They need a John Calipari type, but they dont operate in John Caliparis neighborhood.,Then you need to pay Chip Kelly prices, offer Chip Kelly-style control, and install Chip Kelly-style bells and whistles.In hiring Kelly, Guerrero took the kind of big swing he had never taken before, broadening his vision with the nudging of booster Casey Wasserman and former Bruins quarterback Troy Aikman.In this new hire, which UCLA says will be conducted with the help of another former Bruin, Golden State Warriors general manager Bob Myers, Guerrero needs to swing with the same launch angle.In other words, he cant hire a coach from New Mexico who, in 18 years of Division I coaching, had reached the Sweet 16 only once.That was Steve Alford, and, lets face it, his biggest problem was that he never should have been hired in the first place.From his messy opening news conference in 2013, during which he made comments about a rape charge against one of his former players at Iowa for which he later apologized, Alford never seemed comfortable here.It was like he took the job not because he wanted it, but because he felt he couldnt turn it down.,He never sold the program through either entertaining regular seasons or deep tournament runs.I supported him in this space because of his and his staffs great recruiting they had seven NBA first-round draft picks and because of those three Sweet 16 appearances in five years, an underrated and difficult task.But in each of those Sweet 16 games they were badly outclassed, losing by double digits.
Prep Boys Basketball BSN Classic at Heritage: Georgetown-Ridge Farm vs. Indiana Math and Science, 10 a.m. BSN Classic at Heritage: Salt Fork vs. Centralia Lutheran, 11:30 a.m.
Bi-County Holiday Tournament at Fountain Central, third place: Fountain Central vs. Attica, 3 p.m. Bi-County Holiday Tournament at Fountain Central, championship: Covington vs. Seeger, 6:30 p.m. Pontiac Holiday Tournament: Danville vs. Warren or West Aurora, 4 p.m. BSN Classic at Heritage: vs. Blue Ridge, 4 p.m. BSN Classic at Heritage: North Vermillion vs. Judah Christian, 5:30 p.m. Tri-County Tournament at Kansas: Westville vs.TBD Prep Girls Basketball Charleston Holiday Tournament: Danville vs.TBD, 10:30 a.m. Bi-County Holiday Tournament at Fountain Central, third-place: Fountain Central vs. Attica or Seeger, 1:30 p.m. Blue Devil Classic: Salt Fork vs. Cissna Park, 1 p.m. Blue Devil Classic: Westville vs. South Vermillion, 2:30 p..,m Blue Devil Classic: North Vermillion vs. Villa Grove/Heritage, 2:30 p.m. Braggin Rights Classic in Cincinnati: Schlarman Academy vs. Columbus (Ohio) Africentric Early College, 3 p.m. Tri-City/Sangamon Valley Holiday Tournament: Armstrong-Potomac vs. TBD, 3:30 p.m. Blue Devil Classic: vs. Benton Central, 4 p.m. Bi-County Holiday Tournament at Fountain Central, championship: Covington vs. Attica or Seeger, 5 p.m. Prep Wrestling Fountain Central at Twin Lakes Super 6 Tournament, 8 a.m. Danville at Lincoln Invitational, 11 a.m. Hoopeston Area at Porta Oakwood/Salt Fork, Seeger and Westville/Georgetown-Ridge Farm at New Year's Challenge at Palmer Arena