Oklahoma basketball: Frank Booker knows he has to step up with Je'lon Hornbeak out

Going into Saturday night's game against Texas A&M at Houston's Toyota Center, the Sooners are short on depth. Frank Booker is the only true guard in the three-man bench crew, though forward Tyler Neal can play the guard spots if needed.
by Ryan Aber Published: December 20, 2013

— Frank Booker came to Oklahoma with a reputation.

Booker hit 99 3-pointers as a high school senior at Westside High School in Augusta, Ga. He averaged nearly 28 points per game.

There was no doubt Booker was recruited as a shooter.

While the Sooners would much prefer to have time to ease the freshman guard into things more, they need Booker to be more than just an occasional sharpshooter.

Going into Saturday night's game against Texas A&M at Houston's Toyota Center, the Sooners are short on depth.

Lon Kruger is using an eight-man rotation with the loss of Je'lon Hornbeak to a foot injury last week.

Booker is the only true guard in the three-man bench crew, though forward Tyler Neal can play the guard spots if needed.

“Oh, definitely,” Booker said when asked if he is putting more pressure on himself with Hornbeak out. “I feel like I have to step up, not just as a 3-point shooter but as a defensive player.”

In the two games since Hornbeak's injury, Booker is 4 of 13 from the floor, hitting 2 of 7 from behind the 3-point line, for 11 points.

After playing a season-high 26 minutes against Tulsa, he played 17 in Tuesday's win over UT Arlington.

“He's got pretty good instincts as a player,” Neal said. “I really thought that when he first got here. Obviously he's a great shooter — that's his No. 1 thing. He'll get in there and rebound a little bit and he'll scrap a little bit on defense.”


by Ryan Aber
Reporter
Ryan Aber has worked for The Oklahoman since 2006, covering high schools, the Oklahoma City RedHawks, the Oklahoma City Barons and OU football recruiting. An Oklahoma City native, Aber graduated from Northeastern State. Before joining The...
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