The Oklahoma Sooners can add a check in the win column of the Red River Rivalry and they have Romero Osby to thank. The senior put up a career-high 29 points as the Sooners beat the Texas Longhorns, 73-67, on Monday night. Osby is in the midst of a five-game stretch in which he averages just over 19 points per-game and getting to the foul line is a big part of his success.
Osby was 10 of 11 at the line on Monday and 28 of 36 over Oklahoma’s past five games. Pretty good for a 6-foot-8 power forward. Proving how vital getting to the line is to Osby’s game and to Oklahoma’s success as a whole, the Sooners are 9-2 when the Meridian, Miss. native hits at least five free-throws.
As a 52-percent shooter who knocks down 80-percent of his free-throws, is a decent rebounder, active on defense and is an active leader among teammates, Osby is a coach’s dream.
Osby’s leadership was on display against Texas. With under two minutes remaining, the Longhorns cut an 11-point deficit to four points, thanks in-part to back-to-back 3′s by Ioannis Papapetrou. Osby quickly gathered the other four Sooners on the floor and calmed them down, reminding them to finish the last few seconds of the game.
Luckily for Oklahoma, the Sooners didn’t have to play the second half without their leading-rebounder, like the Longhorns had to do when they lost Jonathan Holmes for the foreseeable future after the sophomore broke his right hand going for a loose ball in the waning minutes of the first half.
Papapetrou put up 12 points in Holmes’ absence but the rebounding deficiency was evident. Papapetrou pulled down four boards, while Cameron Ridley, Julien Lewis and Jaylen Bond each had five rebounds. Sheldon McClelland led all Longhorns with 25 points off the bench.
As for Oklahoma, Osby may have been the main attraction but Amath M’Baye stole the show with a literal highlight reel of dunks that put an exclamation point on his night of 15 points, five boards. Buddy Hield‘s 12 points capped Oklahoma’s double-digit scoring performances.
Take a peek at M’Baye’s dunks here:
Mike Gillmeister can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, or on Twitter:@mgillmei. Like his Facebook page here for updates on Big 12/A-1o men’s basketball.