Kelvin Sampson: Thunder has impacted OU basketball
Kelvin Sampson says Lon Kruger will resurrect the OU basketball program. But Sampson issued one warning: the Sooner job has slipped in status.
I chatted with Sampson last week, when the Houston Rockets came through town. Sampson now is a Rockets assistant coach. I wrote about Sampson for the Monday Oklahoman. You can read that here.
Sampson coached OU from 1994-2006, going to 11 NCAA Tournaments in 12 years, making the Sweet 16 three times and the Final Four once. Sampson took over for Billy Tubbs and retained the tradition and expectations established by Tubbs in the ‘80s.
“It’s not the same job Billy and I had,” Sampson said. “The Thunder impacts everything around here, good or bad, directly and indirectly.”
Interesting theory. The Thunder obviously impacts college basketball attendance, although it’s a perfect storm – the elevation of the Thunder into an NBA force, coupled with a downturn in the fortunes of OU and OSU.
But does the Thunder impact college basketball beyond attendance? Sampson says yes, just from a public consciousness standpoint. The Thunder has developed clout just not inOklahomaor OKC, but Sampson says the Thunder’s appeal goes coast to coast.
“They’re such a national brand,” Sampson said. “No matter where the Thunder go, people go out to watch ‘em. They’re not a phenomenon anymore. This is just one of the great franchises in the NBA.”
Message Sent Successfully
Be Sure to Check Out Our Top Headlines
- 14589OKC Thunder: Thunder trio praise fans before potential departures
- 8609Oklahoma State football: Todd Monken thinks Wes Lunt should've stayed in Stillwater
- 6402Student shot dead during botched home invasion
- 6393Oklahoma medical examiner reports cause of deaths in Grand Lake boat crash
- 6018Soaring gasoline prices hurt Oklahoma City area retailers
- 5816Oklahoma football: Sooners get pair of commitments
- 4098As Boy Scouts' vote on gay members nears, faith groups weigh in
- 3659Oklahoma weather: Crews work to clear storm damage after tall metal utility polls fall in northwest Oklahoma City
- 3653Oklahoma City Thunder: Amnesty Kendrick Perkins?
- 3418Rockets guard Patrick Beverley bombarded with hateful Tweets after Thunder get eliminated
Back to share with a friend form.
Add More Recipients