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No. 21 BYU Goes Cold In Loss At Oklahoma

Feb 6, 2024, 8:21 PM | Updated: Feb 7, 2024, 9:07 am

No. 21 BYU basketball falls in its lone Big 12 matchup against the Oklahoma Sooners.

BYU lost to the Sooners 82-66 on a night where Oklahoma was playing with a heavy heart, just one day after the passing of Oklahoma superfan, country music star Toby Keith.

Oklahoma entered the game fifth nationally in three-point defense, allowing opponents to shoot only 28.2% from beyond the arc. BYU experienced that firsthand as the high-powered Cougar offense shot only 31% from three.

The Cougars finished the night 8-of-26 from three.

Inside the arc, BYU wasn’t much better, particularly their layups.

BYU finished the game 9-of-22 on layups.

Fousseyni Traore led the way in scoring with 21 points on 9-of-17 shooting from the field. Out of those eight misses, a handful were layups at the rim.

BYU was without Aly Khalifa once again due to the flu. Starting forward Noah Waterman played despite dealing with an illness as well.

Oklahoma outscored BYU in the second half 48-32. Star guard Javian McCollum led the Sooners with 20 points and was a perfect 8-8 from the free throw line.

BYU and Oklahoma were tied after the First Half

14:43 – BYU forward Noah Waterman started the game despite battling an illness. He was a game-time decision. Fousseyni Traore was active in the post early but missed an easy bucket at the rim after grabbing an offensive board from a Waterman miss.

Oklahoma’s Le’Tre Darthard, a former UVU starter, knocked down the game’s only three in the opening minutes.

Dallin Hall had a nice alley-oop to Atiki Ally Atiki for a slam dunk. Oklahoma 7, BYU 6.

11:40 – Offense is hard to come by for both teams as they are shooting below 20% at the under-12 minute timeout. It’s a physical defensive battle in the early going. Oklahoma forced BYU into a shot clock violation. BYU 9, OU 9.

7:17 – The offenses started to come to life thanks to Fousseyni Traore and Oklahoma native Jaxson Robinson. Traore knocked down three buckets at the hoop, Robinson hit a three-pointer.

Richie Saunders also scored a contested basket at the rim. BYU 21, OU 18.

3:48 – Dallin Hall is shining again. The sophomore guard, deemed one of the nation’s best guys by Oklahoma’s Porter Moser, knocked down two threes to extend BYU’s lead.

After starting the game 1-of-4 from three, BYU has knocked down three of its next five attempts.

Atiki Ally Atiki picked up a careless third foul to send the game into the final media timeout of the first half. The foul was his third of the night. BYU 31, OU 27.

1:44 – Dallin Hall buried another three, but then OU’s Otega Oweh hit a three to counter. It was the fifth made field goal in the last six attempts by the Sooners. BYU 34, OU 32.

HALF – Oklahoma’s Milos Uzan quickly gets to the bucket to hit a layup before the buzzer.

Fousseyni Traore leads BYU in scoring at the break with 11, followed by Dallin Hall with nine. BYU is shooting 45% from three and 41% from the field. The Cougars have committed five turnovers and Oklahoma has scored six points off those TOs.

BYU has zero points off Oklahoma’s three turnovers. BYU 34, Oklahoma 34.

BYU goes cold in the second half

15:16 – Fousseyni Traore missed a pair of bunnies at the rim. It felt like he was rushing himself, resulting in some uncharacteristic misses.

Noah Waterman buried a big three to put BYU in front by five, but then Oklahoma roared back with Otega Oweh getting downhill with a midrange shot.

BYU switched to a 1-3-1 zone that led to a three from Soares and, on the next possession, resulted in Atiki Ally Atiki picking up his fourth foul. BYU 42, OU 41.

11:52 – Oklahoma builds up a game-high lead of four after forward Sam Godwin hits a layup. Atiki Ally Atiki had to play conservative defense due to having four fouls. BYU has gone the last 2:39 without points. Oklahoma 48, BYU 44.

8:46 – BYU went through another scoring drought of 2:30+ until Fousseyni Traore hit a floater in the paint off the glass to trim OU’s lead down to five.

Earlier, the hotly debated Big 12 officials had a review where they looked for a potential flagrant foul between Trevin Knell and Javian McCollum. Knell was attempting to set a screen and then both players hit the floor. After review, officials called it a double personal. OU 53, BYU 48.

6:43 – BYU’s offense is in a rut. They are forcing contested shots. Spencer Johnson attempted a three that appeared to have some hesitation as he looked over his shoulder before firing it off. BYU continues to battle on the defensive end, but the offense is struggling to find its groove. OU 56, BYU 50.

3:56 – BYU has made some costly mistakes. Spencer Johnson intended a pass for Jaxson Robinson that went out of bounds. Then, a couple of possessions later, Noah Waterman had the ball stripped beyond the arc.

BYU cut the deficit to six and then had a chance to get it down to a one-possession game. Waterman attempted a three, but it didn’t fall. Johnson tried to get the rebound but was called for an over-the-back foul. OU 67, BYU 59.

Final – BYU hit one field goal in the final 4:30 of action. Cougars fall to 16-6 overall and dip below .500 once again in Big 12 play at 4-5.

Up next for BYU basketball

After two weeks away, BYU returns to the Marriott Center to host the Kansas State Wildcats. K-State is fresh off an upset win over rival Kansas on Monday night.

It will be the first meeting in Provo between BYU and K-State since 1971.

Mitch Harper is a BYU Insider for KSLsports.com and hosts the Cougar Tracks Podcast (SUBSCRIBE) and Cougar Sports Saturday (12–3 p.m.) on KSL Newsradio. Follow Mitch’s’ coverage of BYU in the Big 12 Conference on X: @Mitch_Harper.

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No. 21 BYU Goes Cold In Loss At Oklahoma