Conference play is finally here. The Kansas Jayhawks open conference play by welcoming in what is likely the most surprising Big 12 team so far this year in the Oklahoma Sooners. Will tonight’s clash of ranked teams be a close one, or will the return of Udoka Azubuike kick the offense into high gear and lead to the first of many conference blowouts?
Kyle_Davis21: Oklahoma is off to a better start than I think anyone was expecting, but this is a rough way for the Sooners to open up Big 12 play. Not only because the game is in AFH, but also because of how the schedule fell into place around the holidays. This will be Oklahoma’s first game in nearly two weeks (since Dec. 21). There will likely be a little rust from that, which I think KU will take advantage of as Udoka continues to get stronger on that ankle. Kansas 74, Oklahoma 68
Fizzle406: I’m feeling good about this one for the reasons Kyle listed. Hopefully they will be able to take the next leap forward now that conference play has begun. Kansas 77, Oklahoma 67
David: Having Dok back is big for this one, because Oklahoma has some size up front as well. Oklahoma’s profile looks really good, but I still have some questions about their sustainability. Because OU has played good defense so far, and because Kansas’ halfcourt offense has been borderline atrocious, I can’t pick an easy win. I also can’t pick Self to lose a Big 12 opener at home. Kansas 76, Oklahoma 71
Mike.Plank: KU had an interesting December with all the close wins, but the end of the month was particularly interesting. Losing to a mediocre-at-best Arizona State team prior to waxing a pretty bad Eastern Michigan club makes it difficult to judge these Jayhawks. If KU can lose to ASU, they can lose to anybody in the Big 12. But in the conference opener? At home? Nah. Kansas 80, Oklahoma 65.
Andy Mitts: I mean, I don’t really know how to feel about this game, other than what I already said on the podcast. I don’t really think KU is at any serious risk of losing this game, but they also don’t really have anything to gain from this either. If the game is close, then the narrative is going to be “what’s wrong with the Jayhawks” and if they win in a blowout it will simply be “Oklahoma is a really bad team”. I’m expecting a double-digit win, but I wouldn’t be shocked to have this one come down to the wire. Dok has another big game, but KU will need Dedric Lawson to go off as well. And I think this is the game that Quentin Grimes finally gets it going. Kansas 87, Oklahoma 71.