Oklahoma basketball: Sooners comfortable in Lloyd Noble

oklahoma sooners

Oklahoma battles Kansas in Lloyd Noble Center. (Photo via LloydNobleCenter.com)

The Oklahoma Sooners are historically known for their football program, a program that just won the Allstate Sugar Bowl against the SEC powerhouse Alabama Crimson Tide. Emerging out of the shadows of this enormous win is the Oklahoma basketball team. The Sooners have jumped out to a 17-5 record and are currently ranked 21st in the AP Top 25 polls.

What has help Oklahoma’s sudden surge into the basketball spotlight? The answer lies in an arena that seats 12,000 screaming fans: the Lloyd Noble Center. The Sooners are 10-2 this season on their home court having only lost to the Kansas Jayhawks, who were ranked No. 18, and to Louisiana Tech in overtime.

Winning at home has been somewhat of tradition the last few years in the program. In the 2012-2013 season the Sooners started the season 9-2 at home and the 2011-2012 season began with a 9-4 record entering into the month of February. Oklahoma University is known for its winning percentage at home. The football program has, in the last 10 years, a record of 81-5 in Norman which is one of the best home records in history.

Home teams always have a crowd advantage but there must be something about the fans and students at Oklahoma University that help the Sooners surge to such prolific home court, or field, statistics. It also does not hurt to have players like Ryan Spangler and Buddy Hield. Spangler, a Gonzaga transfer, is currently a sophomore forward for the Sooners and is averaging a double-double with 11.1 points and 10.2 rebounds a night while Hield, a sophomore guard and Freeport, Grand Bahamas native is averaging 17 points. Oklahoma also is led by senior Cameron Clark of Sherman, Texas who is averaging 16.1 points per game as another forward.

Oklahoma will play tonight in Morgantown against the West Virginia Mountaineers at 7:00pm on ESPNU. This is the first meeting between the two teams this season.