The Sooners were already clawing their way back into the game when Alabama guard Trevor Releford picked up his third foul with just more than eight minutes remaining in the first half.
Then late in the half, Crimson Tide sophomore guard Retin Obasohan picked up three fouls in the span of less than 1:30.
“Obviously, Releford getting his third foul in the first half had a big impact on the game,” Sooners coach Lon Kruger said. “Yet our guys took advantage of that in a good way.”
Obasohan fouled out late in the game, and two other Alabama players finished with four fouls. Oklahoma didn't have a player with more than three fouls.
The Sooners seemed to handle the new rules limiting contact better than the Crimson Tide, though OU struggled to find a balance on the defensive end early.
“Sometimes them driving the ball at us is a little bit a result of us emphasizing keeping our hands back and not fouling,” Kruger said. “We've got to find that line where we keep our hands back, not foul and still guard aggressively. I thought we were a little bit too passive there early when they were attacking us.”
HAMILTON PLANS TO TRANSFER
After playing just three minutes in the Sooners final exhibition against Oklahoma Christian, junior center Keshaun Hamilton left the team as he considered a transfer.