2008 NCAA Tournament Capsule: Oral Roberts

    
March 12th, 2008

Oral Roberts Golden Eagles

Summit League (24-8, 16-2)

 

Big Wins: 11/27 Tulsa (84-70), 12/20 at Oklahoma State (74-59), 1/17 IUPUI (64-63)

Bad Losses: 11/14 vs Texas A&M Corpus Christi (81-86), 2/16 at IUPUI (66-69), 3/1 at North Dakota State (55-68)

Last NCAA Appearance: 2007, First Round loss to Washington State

Coach: Scott Sutton (0-2 in 2 NCAA appearances)

 

Probable Starters:

Adam Liberty, Senior, Guard, 9.7 ppg, 3.3 apg

Moses Ehambe, Senior, Guard, 11.7 ppg, 2.2 rpg

Yemi Ogunoye, Senior, Guard, 3.1 ppg, 3.4 rpg

Marcus Lewis, Junior, Forward, 8.9 ppg, 5.6 rpg

Shawn King, Senior, Center, 9.7 ppg, 6.6 rpg, 2.0 bpg

 

Key Roleplayers:

Robert Jarvis, Junior, Guard, 16.1 ppg, 2.0 apg

Kelvin Sango, Junior, Guard, 3.9 ppg, 2.4 rpg

Marchello Vealy, Junior, Guard, 4.7 ppg, 4.8 rpg

 

Why They Can Surprise:

Rarely does a so-called mid-major have so much size on the perimeter. On the wings Oral Roberts starts 6-6 Moses Ehambe and 6-9 Yemi Ogunoye. Ehambe is a big mismatch on the offensive end. He can shoot the three-ball with consistency over smaller defenders or use his speed around bigger defenders to get to the basket. Ogunoye is not much of a scorer. In fact, none of his numbers will jump out at you, but he is the prototypical glue guy and does all the little things.

 

The size continues up front. Marcus Lewis, a 6-8 junior, is a tough forward who has turned into a nice low post option on the offensive end. The transfer from Portland is a solid rebounder and will always be aggressive under the basket. The biggest of the big guys is 6-10 center Shawn King. King has had a solid senior season, averaging 9.7 points and 6.6 rebounds. He is also the lone shot blocking threat on the team and averages over two per contest.

 

Why They Can Disappoint:

The Golden Eagles used their size to dominate the Summit League this season, but they will need their shots to fall with more consistency if they hope to find an upset in March. In years past, ORU was one of the best shooting teams in the conference, but the numbers have slipped a little bit this year. The rebounding is in the same boat. ORU barely outrebounds their opponents and for a team that has used their height to overmatch most teams they play, that is surprising. Ehambe and Ogunoye, despite their size, do very little to help out the overall rebounding numbers.

 

Who To Watch:

Even with all the size, the two most important players are also the shortest, relatively speaking. Adam Liberty will run the point and he does a decent job keeping the team under control. The turnover numbers are a little high, but Liberty will get to the basket and do plenty of scoring. Robert Jarvis will usually come off the bench and Coach Scott Sutton could not ask for a better spark. Jarvis leads the team in scoring and is a great long range shooter. He is not simply a shooter off the bench though and the 5-11 Jarvis will find his way through the paint and get to the basket.