“[Oklahoma] was close to a Final Four team at that time of the year,” he said. Oklahoma dominated Villanova, winning the neutral court contest in Hawaii, 78-55.. Meanwhile, the Wildcats shot 32% from the field, including a putrid 4-32 from beyond the three-point stripe.
“I see very little carryover,” Oklahoma coach Lon Kruger said during a Final Four conference call on Monday. It’s almost like we played them last year.”
That result doesn’t seem to bode well for Villanova. However, both coaches downplayed its significance.
We’ll see which team is playing at a championship level on Saturday.
Villanova and Oklahoma played each other during the non conference portions of their schedules in early December and the result was far from kind to the Wildcats. “They’re doing things differently, we’re doing things differently. I think we just got to that point, Saturday night, of playing like a Final Four team.”
They did, actually.
“We were both ranked in the Top 10 going into that game,” he said during the conference call. We really used that [game] as a bar.”
Villanova coach Jay Wright elaborated a bit more.
It’s clear Wright believes his team is much better equipped this time around.
Of course, it makes sense that ACC foes North Carolina and Syracuse are familiar with each other, but the other National Semifinal match-up will also be a rematch.
The Final Four is set and familiarity abounds.
The Sooners were paced by five players in double figures, led by Isaiah Cousins’ 19 points, 10 assists and 6 rebounds, along with Buddy Hield’s 18 points. “We weren’t even close at that time. “But, when that game unfolded, it was very clear that Oklahoma was playing like a top ten/top five team and we were not