NORMAN — Alvan Adams, Blake Griffin, Stacey King, Eduardo Najera and Hollis Price are among the former OU basketball greats being welcomed back this weekend for the third annual Sooner Basketball Family Weekend alumni event.
Fans will be admitted for free to the Legends Alumni Game, scheduled for noon Saturday. After the game, Sooner fans can receive autographs from the attendees on the Lloyd Noble Center court.
The weekend began Friday morning with a Tip In Club Golf Classic, then continued with Friday evening's Wayman Tisdale Scholarship Fund Dinner at Lloyd Noble Center, where OU All-Americans and 2,000-point scorers were honored.
“Every reunion weekend, every legends weekend has been great,” said OU basketball coach Lon Kruger. “To see all those former players come back and not only players but coaches and managers, administrative folks, to come back and share those memories of their time is really fun to watch.
“This year with the All-Americans and 2,000-point scorers that we're celebrating, it will be even more special because they really are at the heart of the OU tradition from a basketball standpoint. It's a very good tradition.”
Last season, former Sooner Jozsef Szendrei scored 14 points and grabbed 24 rebounds in the Cream Team's 74-60 win over the Crimson Team.
“Last year was my first year to do it and it's just great seeing all the older people and talking to them and having dinner with them and just telling you their life story and how they made it through college,” said sophomore forward Ryan Spangler, who originally signed with Gonzaga out of Bridge Creek High School before transferring back home last year.
“I think just how much fun they had in college, just on the court having fun and then having fun off the court.”
Kruger said the event is important to current Sooners because some of them are too young to remember all the success OU basketball enjoyed in the 1970s and '80s.
“When they see other guys come back and they hear the stories, they realize that these guys won championships back in the 70s or 80s, went to the Final Four, had some great success and how hard they worked at it and, most importantly perhaps, how much it means for those people today, their time as Sooners,” Kruger said. “It makes our guys maybe appreciate their time today a little bit more.”