Before Monday night, Romero Osby had never beaten the Longhorns. The Sooners were on a six-game losing streak to their bitter rival in the burnt orange. Those demons were exorcised Monday night behind the stellar play of Osby, as he collected a career-high 29 points that pushed the Sooners to a 73-67 win.
"It’s just a testament to my teammates and Coach [Lon] Kruger,” said Osby.” "He was running good plays for me and my teammates were finding me and giving me the ball so I didn't have to do much with it but just make a good move. I have to give my postgame to them. Things were just clicking for me tonight."
Since the departure of Blake Griffin, the Lloyd Noble center has seen many sparse crowds. But Monday night, 7,335 Sooner fans showed up and participated in the “White out” across the entire arena
Almost immediately, the crowd started to become a factor. An alley-oop to Amath M’baye in the opening minutes put the Sooner faithful on their feet, and created a roar that hasn’t been heard since the Griffin brothers donned the crimson and cream.
"Lobs are always a huge part on the guard. It’s just about finishing them,” said M’Baye. “Our guards are doing a terrific job finding us around the basket."
The play in the first half was sloppy, but the Sooners made a critical, 11-2-run down the stretch in the first half to create a four-point lead going into the half.
From the second-half on, the Sooners cruised behind the dominate play of Osby and M’baye, down low. It’s enjoyable for any Sooner fan when their team is able to beat Texas. But with the high flying dunks and alley-oops the Sooners were showcasing, it made it that more enjoyable and exciting.
"I am really happy for the guys,” said head coach Lon Kruger. “I thought they fought hard from the start. It was a little bit of a trouble to get going, it seemed. I thought Texas played really hard and very physical early with us. It took a little while to get through that. The guys did a terrific job of creating the energy in the second half and were really aggressive on both ends of the floor. Of course, all of us kind of played off of Romero [Osby]. He was fantastic all night long. Other guys played well as well but I am really happy for the guys."
The game seemed well in-hand with just less than five minutes left. Fans all around the Lloyd Noble Center were in a joyful mood as their Sooners were just minutes away from victory. Then, perhaps the most enjoyable event of the night occurred.
The student section catches a lot of grief for their non-existence at non-football athletic events. But, Monday night, they showed up and put a smile on ever Sooner fans face late in the fourth quarter when they simultaneously let out a “Just like football” chant across the arena.
In a night that special to many, that seemed to top it off. A season that looked to be promising has certainly lived up to the billing so far, as the victory over the Longhorns on Monday night pushed the Sooners conference record to 4-1.
But most importantly, the Sooners snapped the dreaded six-game losing streak to the Longhorns
"It felt good,” said Osby. "I was telling Sam [Grooms] when we were coming back to the huddle that we finally got these guys. Since I have been here they have beat us. Twice my first year when I was redshirted and twice last year, so to come in and finally beat them, it feels good."
No matter what the record says, that was a big win for the Sooners. Up next is another chance to break a long streak. The Sooners will travel to Lawrence on Saturday to take on Kansas, a place they haven't won since 1993.