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August 6, 2013

OU releases 2013 non-conference schedule

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Oklahoma announced its non-conference schedule Monday afternoon. The schedule features tough road games and opponents but only one NCAA tournament team from a year ago.

The schedule also does not include a game played in the All-College Classic. This season will mark the first time since the 1982-83 season that the Sooners haven't played in the All-College Classic.

On Nov. 8, the Sooners travel to Dallas to take on Alabama at American Airlines Center to open the regular season. This game, which will be played the day after Oklahoma football battles Baylor in Waco, Texas, will provide the earliest indicator in recent memory of how good the Sooners might be in 2013-14.


video by Eddie Radosevich

"With so many new guys, a lot of games at home early is a benefit," said OU coach Lon Kruger in a release. "You still have to play well and take care of business in those, but hopefully we'll be able to gain some momentum and confidence from that part of the schedule."

Alabama reached the quarterfinals of the 2013 National Invitational Tournament last season before bowing out to Maryland in the quarterfinals.

The Crimson Tide put together a 23-win season last year and will return top scorer Trevor Releford who averaged 14.9 points per game and shot better than 40 percent from 3-point range. Releford was one of 20 collegiate players invited to the LeBron James Skills Academy last July.

Following their game against Alabama, the Sooners will play three games at Lloyd Noble Center against North Texas, Idaho and Mercer.

Mercer reached the NIT and recorded 24 wins, while Idaho and North Texas amassed a total of 24 wins between them in 2012-13.

The Sooners will have played four games before traveling to Brooklyn, N.Y., to take part in the Coaches vs. Cancer Classic. Among those playing in the classic are Michigan State, Virginia Tech and Seton Hall.

The classic schedule includes back-to-to-back double headers, but the Day 1 matchups haven't been released yet. The games at the Barclays Center will be on TV.

The Sooners and Spartans are the only two 20-win teams competing in the tournament. OU fans will see just what the Sooners are made of if they should draw Michigan State in either of its tourney games.

OU closes November with a home game against Arkansas Little Rock -- a Sun Belt Conference team that finished just 17-15 last season -- before turning their efforts toward beating a Texas A&M Corpus Christi squad that managed to win just six games last season.

On Dec. 8, Oklahoma will head back to the east coast to play George Mason in Washington, D.C. in the BB&T Classic. The Patriots were a 20-win team last year but couldn't earn a tournament bid better than the College Basketball Invitational.

Oklahoma renews its in-state rivalry with Tulsa on Dec. 14 at Lloyd Noble, and then plays UT Arlington at home on Dec. 17 at home.

The Sooners take on Texas A&M in Houston at Reliant Stadium on Dec. 21 and finish their non-conference schedule in Norman against Louisiana Tech on Dec. 30.

Oklahoma NEWS


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