Bubble Watch: Oklahoma State Basketball Should Still Dance Despite Loss

By Josh Paulisin
Oklahoma State
Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Three games, one win and two agonizing defeats for the Oklahoma State Cowboys.

After falling in an 85-81 overtime heart-breaker to Iowa State last Saturday, No. 8 seed Oklahoma State defeated No. 9 Texas Tech on Wednesday, but fell to No. 1 seed Kansas 77-70 in overtime in the quarterfinals of the Big 12 tournament in Kansas City.

Down nine at halftime, Oklahoma State used a 44-point second half to take the game into overtime. However, the Jayhawks took over in the extra frame, as they outscored the Cowboys 10-3 en route to a victory.

Oklahoma State (21-12, 8-10) was led by a balanced offensive attack, as four of its five starters finished in double figures. NBA-bound Marcus Smart scored 14 points and added seven rebounds as he played a team-high 44 minutes.

However, no one was going to stop Andrew Wiggins. The freshman carried the Jayhawks on his back, as Wiggins scored 30 of the Jayhawks’ 77 points in the contest. Wayne Selden was the only other Kansas player to hit double figures, as he chipped in 14 points.

Despite another excruciating loss, Oklahoma State should find itself on the right side of the bubble come Selection Sunday. While playing in one of the toughest conferences in college basketball, the Cowboys racked up five wins against RPI Top 50 teams. Wins over Kansas (No. 3 in RPI), Memphis (No. 29), Colorado (No. 32), Texas (No. 33) and Kansas State (No. 47) should be enough to prove to the committee that Oklahoma State is worthy of a tournament bid.

Not to mention, all but one of Oklahoma State’s losses came against RPI Top 50 teams. And don’t forget, Smart was out for three of those games.

Cowboy fans shouldn’t worry come Selection Sunday, but whoever plays Smart and Co. should shake in their boots, as Oklahoma State is a sleeper for a Final Four run.

Josh Paulisin is a College Basketball Writer for RantSports. He is also an NHL Contributor. Follow him on Twitter, “like” him on Facebook and add him to your network on Google.

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