Marist women's basketball coach Brian Giorgis has lots of connections to the University of Oklahoma.
Giorgis' team will host Sherri Coale's Sooners at 6 p.m. Saturday — the fourth meeting between the programs in the last six years — and he was an assistant to Coale for Team USA at last summer's World University Games in Russia.
Oh, and Giorgis is also a die-hard Oklahoma football fan. He joined the Sooners bandwagon as a kid in 1966 and never jumped off.
Giorgis spoke with The Oklahoman by telephone this week about his team, last summer's experience and OU football.
Q: OU and Marist have met several times in recent years. Why has this become a regular series?
A: I had met Sherri my first year coaching because we both had similar backgrounds, coming straight from high school to be college head coaches. I had picked her brain about a couple of things, and I've been a die-hard Sooner football fan since 1966. I think that tied into it, and she wanted to bring the kids up North.
We got crushed in Norman (in 2009), but the next year it went into overtime. We had a 10-point lead with 10 minutes to go. It was a great atmosphere. In fact, (Coale's) quote about the atmosphere in her postgame conference is on our wall.