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Five Things to Know Before WVU vs. Oklahoma

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As West Virginia looks to end its three-game losing streak on Wednesday night, let’s take a look at five things to know going into tonight’s game against Oklahoma.

Another Team, More New Names

It seems like every team West Virginia has faced this season has a bunch of new names. Well, that’s the world of college basketball now.

Oklahoma hired former Loyola-Chicago head coach Porter Moser last April. Moser led the Ramblers to a Final Four appearance in 2018 and a Sweet 16 appearance in 2021. After former head coach Lon Kruger stepped down, players rushed to enter the portal. Big 12 fans around the country rejoiced, as they would not go up against Brady Manek twice for another season; Manek is now at North Carolina.

Moser and his new staff went after the Groves brothers, Tanner and Jacob, from Eastern Washington. Oklahoma also acquired Jordan Goldwire (Duke) and Ethan Chargois (SMU). Familiar names that stayed for the Sooners are Umoja Gibson, who scored 48 points in two games against WVU last year. Elijah Harkless is another name West Virginia fans should remember.

Oklahoma is Limping into Morgantown

Like West Virginia, Oklahoma is in need of a win. The Sooners are 1-5 in their last six games, losing four straight. In the beginning of the season, Moser had his new group rolling, starting at 11-2, with good wins over Arkansas (88-66), Florida (74-67), and UCF (65-62). The Sooners’ one win in the last six games is against Iowa State.

“They run great offense, [Porter’s] done a great job at putting a team together. They had a chance to beat Kansas, a chance to beat Baylor,” WVU head coach Bob Huggins said on Tuesday. “I really like their team.”

Must-win for West Virginia

As it is a must-win game for Oklahoma, it is also a must-win game for West Virginia. The Mountaineers enter Wednesday with a three-game losing streak after dropping games to Kansas, Baylor, and Texas Tech. After their date with the Sooners, West Virginia will only have one quad-two game left in the season, the rest of the games are quad-one.

WVU is favored in only three games of the remaining 13 games on the schedule, including Oklahoma. If West Virginia does lose against OU, the team’s resume for an at-large bid for the NCAA Tournament will only get smaller.

Betting Lines

The spread for the West Virginia and Oklahoma game is -1.5 WVU. The WVU money line is -130.

The over-under is 130.

Well, it doesn’t get much closer than this for the spread. Both teams are desperate for a win, as the Big 12 has been a gauntlet for everybody. West Virginia is 10-1 at home this season, with the only loss coming to a top-five team in the country in Baylor. Nevertheless, the Mountaineers have taken advantage of the home court presence in the Coliseum. Flip a coin, take your pick, and just pray it hits.

How to Watch and Listen

You can watch West Virginia take on Oklahoma on Wednesday, at 8 p.m., on ESPN2. The Big 12 Conference matchup between the Mountaineers and the Sooners will take place inside the WVU Coliseum.

Mountaineer Sports Network will broadcast the game on the radio, with Tony Caridi and Jay Jacobs once again calling WVU games for the entirety of this season.

Caridi returns to the booth after being placed in the COVID-19 health and safety protocol for the past week. Caridi tested negative yesterday, allowing him to return to the call on Wednesday night.

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Ethan Bock is pursuing his bachelor’s degree in journalism at WVU. He currently is an intern with the Final Fourcast podcast. Ethan has covered WVU football and men’s basketball for the last year. He is from Cincinnati, Ohio.

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