Basketball

3-POINT PREVIEW: Oklahoma Sooners

Feb 2, 2019; Morgantown, WV, USA; Oklahoma Sooners guard Christian James (0) shoots during the first half against the West Virginia Mountaineers at WVU Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Ben Queen-USA TODAY Sports

Time: 8:00 p.m.
Location: Norman, Okla.
TV: ESPN2
KenPom Prediction: 72-70, Iowa State

1 – Quick Turnaround

One of the toughest turnarounds in college basketball is the Saturday to Monday flip Big 12 teams often face multiple times a season. The Cyclones have less than 48 hours to prepare for Oklahoma and vice versa.

Coming off a close game with Texas on Saturday, it is likely the Cyclones used Sunday to rest and recover just as much as they did to prepare for the Sooners.

“Really just rest up, be mentally right,” Iowa State sophomore guard Lindell Wigginton said after Saturday’s 65-60 win over the Longhorns. “We leave (Sunday) and then we’ve got shootaround when we get there so just have a good shootaround then go into Monday’s game ready.”

Side note: Monday night’s game gives us a reason to watch this over and over.

2 – Containing Christian

It is not hard to understand Oklahoma’s offensive plan once you pull up the stats. Give the ball to Christian James.

The senior from Houston is averaging a team-high 16 points and has taken considerably more shots than any other player on the team. His 25.2 percent possessions used is the team-high by a wide margin as well.

James has the ability to shoot from deep and can be really tough to stop once he gets heated up. Keeping him contained early will be key for the Cyclones to prevent him from getting some confidence and rolling from the start.

3 – Shayok’s Shooting

I think Marial Shayok’s performance in the win over Texas can be considered the outlier of all outliers. In fact, I am expecting the Big 12’s leading scorer to come out firing on Monday in Norman coming off of his 3-of-14 for 12 points performance against the Longhorns.

Shayok’s teammates have all the confidence in the world in him and he proved why by knocking down the dagger shot to seal the deal on Saturday in Hilton Coliseum. Don’t be surprised if this ends up being Shayok’s best scoring performance of the season in bounceback fashion.

Jared Stansbury

administrator

Jared is in his seventh year covering Iowa State football and basketball for Cyclone Fanatic. He worked as the site's intern for three years while studying Journalism in Iowa State's Greenlee School of Journalism. He started as a full-time staff writer in May 2016. He took over as the site's managing editor in January 2020. Jared spent five falls covering Iowa high school football as a reporter for KMA Radio, 1460 KXNO and 1430 KASI.