Oklahoma Men's Basketball 2020 NCAA Tournament Capsule


Oklahoma Sooners

Big 12 (19-12, 9-9)

Lon Kruger has Oklahoma in the NCAA Tournament for the third consecutive season and for the seventh time in the past eight years. The Sooners haven’t made it out of the first weekend since their Final Four run in 2016, however. This year’s version of the Sooners revolves around their three talented upperclassmen in Kristian Doolittle, Austin Reaves and Brady Manek. Those three have been a stable presence all season for Oklahoma, and they will need to show up big for the Sooners to have a chance to win games in the NCAA Tournament.
Big Wins: 1/8 at Texas (72-62), 1/25 Mississippi State (63-62), 2/29 at West Virginia (73-62)
Bad Losses: 1/11 at Iowa State (68-81), 1/29 at Kansas State (53-61), 2/4 at Texas Tech (61-69)
Coach:  Lon Kruger
Why They Can Surprise:
Oklahoma is better on defense than on offense and a reliable defense can always be beneficial in the NCAA Tournament. The Sooners are 28th in defensive efficiency, as opponents shoot just 39.9% from the field and 44.2% from inside the arc, both top-40 marks in the nation. Oklahoma is also one of the best teams in the nation at not fouling as they have allowed the third fewest free-throw attempts in the country. The Sooners’ team stats aren’t great offensively, but they have one of the top trios in the tournament with Doolittle, Reaves and Manek. The three average roughly 45 of Oklahoma’s 70.2 points per game, and the Sooners will need that production to advance in the tournament.
Why They Can Disappoint:
The Sooners enter the NCAA Tournament with 12 losses, which indicates they aren’t necessarily a team to be afraid to play. Oklahoma’s best non-conference wins were Minnesota and Mississippi State, and West Virginia and Texas Tech are the only NCAA Tournament teams they defeated this season. They lost games to Iowa State, Oklahoma State and Kansas State during Big 12 play as well. Though their top trio is impressive, Oklahoma’s offense simply hasn’t been consistent or reliable enough to win them games. As a team the Sooners ranked 265th in field goal percentage and 263rd in three-point percentage. They are also one of the worst offensive rebounding teams, so they are forced to rely on their first shot. And though the Sooners shoot 76.6% from the free-throw line, they have attempted the 202nd fewest attempts in the country. Simply put, it could be a challenge for Oklahoma to outscore anyone in the tournament.
Probable Starters:
De’Vion Harmon, Freshman, Guard, 7.4 ppg, 2.0 apg
Jamal Bieniemy, Sophomore, Guard, 5.2 ppg, 2.8 apg, 4.0 rpg
Austin Reaves, Junior, Forward, 14.7 ppg, 3.0 apg, 5.3 rpg
Kristian Doolittle, Senior, Forward, 15.8 ppg, 8.9 rpg
Brady Manek, Junior, Forward, 14.4 ppg, 6.2 rpg, 1.2 bpg
Key Role Players:
Alondes Williams, Junior, Guard, 6.0 ppg
Jalen Hill, Freshman, Forward, 1.9 ppg, 2.1 rpg
Kur Kuath, Junior, Center, 3.4 ppg, 2.1 rpg, 1.5 bpg
Victor Iwuakor, Freshman, Forward, 2.6 ppg, 2.3 rpg
By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 70.2 (206th in nation, 6th in conference)
Scoring Defense: 67.4 (119, 9)
Field-Goal Percentage: 42.0 (265, 9)
Field-Goal Defense: 39.9 (34, 5)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 7.2 (176, 4)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 31.8 (263, 6)
Free-Throw Percentage: 76.6 (19, 1)
Rebound Margin: -1.2 (238, 7)
Assists Per Game: 11.8 (277, 9)
Turnovers Per Game: 11.1 (26, 1)
Recent Postseason Appearances:
2019NCAARound of 64 win over Mississippi
2019NCAARound of 32 loss to Virginia
2018NCAARound of 64 loss to Rhode Island
2016NCAARound of 64 win over CSU Bakersfield
2016NCAARound of 32 win over VCU
2016NCAARegional Semifinal win over Texas A&M
2016NCAARegional Final win over Oregon
2016NCAANational Semifinal loss to Villanova
2015NCAARound of 64 win over Albany
2015NCAARound of 32 win over Dayton
2015NCAARegional Semifinal loss to Michigan State
2014NCAARound of 64 loss to North Dakota State
2013NCAARound of 64 loss to San Diego State
2009NCAARound of 64 win over Morgan State
2009NCAARound of 32 win over Michigan
2009NCAARegional Semifinal win over Syracuse
2009NCAARegional Final loss to North Carolina
2008NCAARound of 64 win over St. Josephs
2008NCAARound of 32 loss to Louisville
2006NCAARound of 64 loss to Milwaukee
2005NCAARound of 64 win over Niagara
2005NCAARound of 32 loss to Utah
2003NCAARound of 64 win over South Carolina State
2003NCAARound of 32 win over California
2003NCAARegional semifinal win over Butler
2003NCAARegional final loss to Syracuse
*all team stats through 3/8