“I passed up a couple, just try to get Ro going,” Hornbeak said. “He told me, be ready to shoot. When Coach Kruger put me in the game, he said, be ready. Steve's always been on my back that big players make big shots.”
Hornbeak's two foul shots with 14.9 seconds left finally sealed the win — “the key is Je'lon likes being there,” Kruger said — and OU had not only its first victory over Kansas since 2005, but a win that showed Sooner crunch-timers can come from most anywhere.
The Jayhawks have suddenly slumped, with a three-game losing streak — talk about your bleeding Kansas — but still, it's Kansas. The Jayhawks still entered this game with the Big 12 lead. And the KU horde still helped fill Lloyd Noble.
Kansas coach Bill Self seemed less distressed by his team than in the previous two losses. Even said the Jayhawks played better in Norman than they did in waxing the Sooners two weeks previous at Allen Fieldhouse.
So this is a victory the Sooners should and will cherish.
“Anytime you beat Kansas, you feel very good about it,” Kruger said. “I'm most happy for the players, the fans. The value of spontaneous celebrations, hard to determine. They are important, that's for sure.”
Even if the celebrants don't know who to hug.
Berry Tramel: Berry can be reached at (405) 760-8080 or at firstname.lastname@example.org. He can be heard Monday through Friday from 4:40-5:20 p.m. on The Sports Animal radio network, including FM-98.1. You can also view his personality page at newsok.com/berrytramel.