Oklahoma basketball: Newcomers could make things different for Sooners this season

The additions of Amath M'Baye and Buddy Hield could propel Oklahoma to the 20-win mark.
by Stephanie Kuzydym Published: October 29, 2012
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photo - UNIVERSITY OF OKLAHOMA COLLEGE BASKETBALL: Coach Lon Kruger talks during the OU men's basketball media day on Monday, Oct. 29, 2012, in Norman, Okla. Photo by Chris Landsberger, The Oklahoman
UNIVERSITY OF OKLAHOMA COLLEGE BASKETBALL: Coach Lon Kruger talks during the OU men's basketball media day on Monday, Oct. 29, 2012, in Norman, Okla. Photo by Chris Landsberger, The Oklahoman

Even senior guard Steven Pledger said M'Baye and Hield are the ones who hustle the most on court.

"They both go," Pledger said. "They go after it."

Hield said Pledger made the freshman aware that they haven't been able to leave a mark on the Sooners program and they need this to be the year that it changes.

Hield called it a learning process. It's something that's being built — brick-by-brick. That's what Kruger is known for doing with programs — that's what he did at UNLV and the four other programs before that he helped rebuild.

Within four years of taking over those five programs, Kruger led them to winning seasons — and all to an eventual 20-win season.

That's also how Grooms knows this season will be different from the last three. They have the pieces — the big guys, the athletic ability, the defense. Now, all they need to do is start to showing everyone just how Kruger's tools helped.

"You want to be a part of something that is rebuilding," Grooms said. "You don't want to be a part of something that's always been there.

"I was looking the other day that we had a 15-16 season last year. With the ability we have, we can get above 20 this year. That's a point guard's dream. I want to win 20 games. I want us to win.

"It's like a dream."

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by Stephanie Kuzydym
Reporter
Stephanie Kuzydym learned at a young age that life is a game of inches. That's just one reason why she loves football. Kuzydym joined The Oklahoman in July 2012. Before arriving in the state, Kuzydym was an intern for the sports departments at...
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