NORMAN — Few people were as locked in on Sunday’s NCAA Tournament selection show as Marcus and Petra Woodard.
After days of immersing themselves in bracketology, wishfully searching for evidence that Oklahoma and Tulsa could be placed at the same subregional site, the Woodards were the only members of either fan base even the slightest bit disappointed.
Son Jordan Woodard and his Oklahoma Sooners are headed to Spokane, Wash., to play North Dakota State on Thursday. His brother, James, and the Tulsa Golden Hurricane will be in San Diego for a Friday game against UCLA. So for only the third time all season, Mom and Dad Woodard had a choice to make.
Split up, one with each son, or stay together and choose.
“It didn’t make it easy, but it’s an opportunity that you’re not guaranteed every year,” said Marcus Woodard. “Lot of people say it’s a good problem to have I guess.”
Jordan, OU's freshman starting point guard, is averaging 10.3 points per game and has given the Sooners an upgrade at the position. James, Tulsa's sophomore shooting guard, is the Golden Hurricane's leading scorer.
The former Edmond Memorial standouts, who were raised in nearby Arcadia, have a family that's plenty tight. They grew up in a house built right across the street from where their grandfather has lived most of his life. Marcus and Petra — and often plenty more family members — constantly made trips to Norman and Tulsa to watch the boys play college basketball.
On Feb. 15, the Sooners played at Oklahoma State while the Golden Hurricane hosted Old Dominion. James tried to talk his parents into both going to Stillwater, but they insisted on splitting up, with Marcus going to Bedlam and Petra to Tulsa.
Last week, Marcus went to the Big 12 Championships in Kansas City. Petra headed to El Paso for the Conference USA Tournament.
After the Sooners were eliminated Thursday, Marcus stayed in Kansas City until Saturday afternoon.