Men's basketball: Sooners start season with a bang, win by 34 points
The OU men's basketball team ran Louisiana-Monroe out of the building on Sunday afternoon at Lloyd Noble Center, winning its season opener, 85-51.
How the Sooners won: OU dominated ULM in the paint, outscoring the Warhawks 42-26, and outrebounded them, 49-30.
Key stat: The Sooners scored 37 points coming off the bench — compared to ULM’s 14 — led by senior forward Andrew Fitzgerald, who had 12 points on 6-for-10 shooting.
Key performer: The Big 12’s leading returning scorer, senior guard Steven Pledger, showcased his range Saturday afternoon, leading the Sooners with 15 points — all from 3-pointers.
Key opponent: Junior guard Amos Olatayo led all scorers with 21 on 7-for-15 shooting. He also added a team-high eight rebounds.
What it means: It’s only the first game and Louisiana-Monroe doesn’t present the toughest challenge — the Warhawks went 3-26 last season — but it’s apparent this year’s Sooner squad is markedly improved from last season. OU is deeper, more athletic and, simply put, more talented than it was a year ago.
Next up for the Sooners: OU hits the road to take on Texas-Arlington at 7 p.m. Friday in Arlington, Texas.