Oklahoma State Cowboys
Big 12 Conference (22-10, 9-7)
Big Wins: 1/23 at Kansas State (73-69), 2/20 Baylor (82-75), 2/27 Kansas (85-77)
Bad Losses: 12/2 at Tulsa (65-86), 1/11 at Oklahoma (57-62), 2/6 at Texas Tech (74-81)
Last NCAA Appearance: 2009, Second Round loss to Pittsburgh
Coach: Travis Ford (1-2 in 2 NCAA appearances)
Why They Can Surprise:
Oklahoma State has a couple superstars in James Anderson and Obi Muonelo. Anderson is one of the best pure scorers in the nation. There is not a way that he cannot score. He is a fine outside shooter, can use his 6-6 frame to get to the basket and has a nice mid-range game. He even gets to the charity stripe an amazing 7.9 times per game and is more than capable of grabbing an offensive rebound and taking it right back up for an easy bucket. That is how somebody in the Big 12 can average 22.6 points per game.
Muonelo cannot attack the basket as well as Anderson, but he is a more consistent outside shooter and has connects on 43.3 percent of his attempts from long range. His ability to hit the glass is also very important on a team that lacks size.
Why They Can Disappoint:
And it is that lack of size that is a big problem for the Cowboys. Generally Coach Travis Ford will have Anderson and Muonelo at the three and four spots and start two 5-9 players in the backcourt. Keiton Page has done an admirable job and has turned into a steady ballhandler who can also hit the outside shot. Ray Penn has been inconsistent during his freshman campaign and a knee has sidelined him for the season. Fred Gulley and Nick Sidorakis have had to step up in Penn’s absence. Gulley has some size for a ballhandler, which has earned him a handful of starts, but he is not much of a scorer at this point of his career.
Who To Watch:
Usually OSU plays their four guards with Marshall Moses in the middle. And Moses does a good job in that role, averaging 8.7 points and 8.2 rebounds. He is a good interior scorer and does as well as he can mopping up the rebounds while the guards are sprinting down the court. Yet, he is only 6-7 and that can be a problem on the defensive end against much taller opposition. However, there is another option for Coach Ford. Matt Pilgrim, a transfer from Hampton, is a big bodied forward who was inserted in the starting lineup while Penn was out with an injury and at times has taken over the Moses’ starting gig. Pilgrim is averaging 8.3 points and 6.8 rebounds on the season, but his best games were when he was in the starting lineup. If Oklahoma State has to play big, and they can go big with wings that are 6-5 and 6-6, Pilgrim will play a huge role.
Fred Gulley, Freshman, Guard, 1.6 ppg, 1.3 apg
Keiton Page, Sophomore, Guard, 10.7 ppg, 2.7 apg
Obi Muonelo, Senior, Guard, 13.4 ppg, 2.3 apg, 5.1 rpg
James Anderson, Junior, Guard, 22.6 ppg, 2.4 apg, 5.8 rpg
Matt Pilgrim, Junior, Forward, 8.3 ppg, 6.8 rpg
Roger Franklin, Freshman, Forward, 2.6 ppg, 1.6 rpg
Marshall Moses, Junior, Forward, 8.7 ppg, 8.2 rpg
Nick Sidorakis, Junior, Guard, 2.3 ppg, 1.3 rpg
By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 74.4 (64th in nation, 8th in conference)
Scoring Defense: 67.6 (166, 6)
Field-Goal Percentage: 44.8 (100, 6)
Field-Goal Defense: 41.6 (97, 6)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 8.2 (20, 1)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 35.0 (128, 10)
Free-Throw Percentage: 71.6 (84, 6)
Rebound Margin: 2.4 (99, 6)
Assists Per Game: 12.3 (219, 11)
Turnovers Per Game: 12.7 (76, 4)
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