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College basketball in Oklahoma: A look at Oklahoma State's vital signs

John Helsley takes the pulse of OSU basketball after a season in which the Cowboys returned to the NCAA Tournament.
by Jenni Carlson and John Helsley Published: March 24, 2013

NCAA appearance: Guarded condition

The Cowboys returned to the Tournament for the first time since 2010, yet didn't even make it to the opening weekend. They were ousted in the first round in a poor performance. The expectation will be for another tournament run in 2014, although the height of those expectations depends on whether Marcus Smart and/or Markel Brown and/or Le'Bryan Nash return or jump to the NBA.

March Madness: Guarded condition

Just as OSU fans were buzzing about their team's turnaround season and their NCAA Tournament chances, they had their dance card revoked. The Cowboys' postseason existence was snuffed out by the early moments of the second half against Oregon, if not earlier. It'll be interesting to see if that comes with any carry-over effect.

Attendance: Stable condition

There's been much made of the “Thunder Effect” and its impact on college hoops in our state. But the Oklahoma City pro team's arrival coincided with OSU's on-court downturn. In this state, winning is everything. And when the Cowboys started really winning this season, the rowdy returned, with sellouts and near-capacity crowds.

Recruiting: Full health

The Cowboys have help on the way, with a class of five signees that is tied for No. 23 in the team rankings. Four-star guards Stephen Clark and Detrick Mostella are scorers and shooters who should provide a boost to the offense. Leyton Hammonds, a 6-9 forward, is a three-star prospect coming off a super senior season in Texas. There's some size in the class, too, with 6-10 center Gary Gaskins, a junior college transfer.

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by Jenni Carlson
Jenni Carlson, a sports columnist at The Oklahoman since 1999, came by her love of sports honestly. She grew up in a sports-loving family in Kansas. Her dad coached baseball and did color commentary on the radio for the high school football...
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by John Helsley
OSU Reporter Sr.
John Helsley grew up in Del City, reading all the newspapers and sports magazines he could get his hands on. And Saturday afternoons, when the Major League Game of the Week was on, he'd keep a scorecard for the game. So the sports appeal was was...
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