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Sooner vs Rams | NCAA Round of 32

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Sooner vs Rams | NCAA Round of 32

By Don Phillips


March Madness | Round of 32

Oklahoma Sooners (2 seed, 26-7) vs. VCU Rams (10 seed, 25-10)


5:15 PM ET, Sunday, March 20, 2016

Chesapeake Energy Arena (17,367), Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Oklahoma University currently ranks second nationally in 3-point field goal percentage (.429) by hitting 345-804 of its shots from downtown. Oklahoma’s all-time record for 3-point field goal percentage in a campaign is .414 (1986-87).

OU has connected on at least 10 treys in 22 games this year (a school record) and it’s 10.5 3-point makes per game ranks fifth nationally (first in Big 12). OU’s 345 total 3-point field goals made this season ranks fifth in the country (first in the Big 12).

Oklahoma owns an 8-5 record this season against teams ranked in the AP’s top 25 (at the time of competition). That eight-win total is the most in school history and is the second-most among Big 12 schools this season. OU has two wins this season against top-10 opponents (then-No. 9 Villanova on Dec. 7 and then-No. 10 West Virginia on Feb. 20).

OU finished third the 2016 Big 12 Conference race with a 12-6 league record. Coach Kruger’s squad advanced to the semifinals of the Big 12 Championship in Kansas City (with a win over Iowa State in the quarters), but fell short to No. 9 West Virginia, 69-67.

The Sooners rank third in the Big 12 and 21st nationally in scoring offense (80.5 points per contest). OU enters Sunday’s contest having scored at least 80 points in 16 of 33 total outings this season. OU is 15-1 this season when scoring 80-plus points.

On the defensive end, the Sooners rank second in the Big 12 in field goal percentage defense (.406) and first in both blocked shots (5.2) and defensive rebounds (27.9) per contest.

Through 33 games this season, Jordan Woodard is averaging 12.6 points per contest, shooting .413 (132-320) from the floor and .449 (70-156) from 3-point range (3rd in the Big 12). Comparatively, last season Woodard averaged 9.3 points, while shooting .361 (90-249) from the field and .254 (17-67) from long distance.

VCU (25-10), the West Region’s No. 10 seed, beat No. 7 seed Oregon State 75-67 in Friday’s opening game in Oklahoma City. The Rams shot 48.2 percent from the field while holding Oregon to a 41.7-percent mark, and outrebounded the Beavers 40-28.

This is VCU’s 15th NCAA Tournament appearance, ninth since 2004 and sixth straight. It advanced to the Final Four in 2011.

The Rams tied with Dayton and St. Bonaventure for the Atlantic 10 regular season title with a 14-4 conference record. The No. 2 seed in the league championship, they lost 87-74 in the title game to No. 4 seed St. Joseph’s.

Senior guard Melvin Johnson is VCU’s leading scorer on the year with his 17.2 points per game. He has made 105 3-pointers in 35 games and is shooting .383 from long distance.

Junior guard JeQuan Lewis registered game highs of 21 points and 8 assists while adding 7 rebounds Friday against Oregon State. Junior forward Mo Alie-Cox finished with 20 points and a game-high 8 board.

Selection: Oklahoma