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Oklahoma basketball: Summer trip turned around Isaiah Cousins' season

by Ryan Aber Published: January 7, 2014
/articleid/3921673/1/pictures/2284065">Photo - Oklahoma's Isaiah Cousins (11) drives the ball against Mercer's Bud Thomas (5) during an NCAA men's college basketball game between the Oklahoma Sooners (OU) and the Mercer Bears at Lloyd Noble Center in Norman, Okla., Monday, Dec. 2, 2013. Photo by Nate Billings, The Oklahoman
Oklahoma's Isaiah Cousins (11) drives the ball against Mercer's Bud Thomas (5) during an NCAA men's college basketball game between the Oklahoma Sooners (OU) and the Mercer Bears at Lloyd Noble Center in Norman, Okla., Monday, Dec. 2, 2013. Photo by Nate Billings, The Oklahoman

Cousins' first-half point guard play against the Longhorns, with starter Jordan Woodard out with foul trouble and the Sooners struggling from the field early, helped lift the Sooners to a halftime lead.

So although Sooners coach Lon Kruger hoped to not use Cousins at the point this season when he could help it, Cousins embraced the role.

“I just looked at it as a good opportunity for me to mature as a player,” Cousins said.

That's also how he's looked at his ejection late in the win over the Longhorns for a second technical foul.

“That was hard because it could've cost us the game,” Cousins said. “That's the tough part.”

Perhaps the player who was most impressed with Cousins' play was Hornbeak.

“Once they told him I would pretty much be out for a little while, he knew what he had to do and he did it and I thought he did a heck of a job doing it,” Hornbeak said. “Now, he's just playing comfortably, freely.

“It's just confidence. He knows his spots very well, he knows when to shoot and when to pass it. He's really worked on his shots and getting to those spots that he's seen on film and just pulling up.”

by Ryan Aber
OU Athletics 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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