Oklahoma-Kansas Preview

The Associated Press

After a blowout of Texas this past weekend, Kansas has beaten every team in the Big 12 at least once, but it hasn't yet clinched the conference title.

The fifth-ranked Jayhawks will get a chance to extend their dominance over Oklahoma while wrapping up at least a share of their 10th straight regular-season crown Monday night at home.

"That was our first goal to start the year off - to win a 10th straight Big 12 championship," freshman reserve guard Frank Mason said after scoring 14 points in Saturday's 85-54 home win over the Longhorns that avenged a Feb. 1 defeat. "That's still our goal. Right now we are taking it one game at a time so we can reach that goal and keep making history."

Only UCLA, Gonzaga, Connecticut and UNLV have won at least 10 straight conference titles.

The Jayhawks (21-6, 12-2) have won three in a row and have a three-game lead over Oklahoma (20-7, 9-5), Texas and Iowa State with four to play.

They ended Texas' bid to climb within one game of them very early Saturday, jumping out to a 46-18 halftime lead with Andrew Wiggins scoring 15 of his game-high 21 points in the opening 20 minutes. The freshman has averaged 19.0 points and 58.8 percent shooting in the last three games.

"We wanted to come out aggressive," said Wiggins, averaging a team-high 16.4 points. "Last time we got embarrassed at their place. We wanted to do the same thing to them, win every minute of every possession."

He'll look for a similar individual bounce-back effort against the Sooners. Wiggins was held to nine points and shot 2 of 9 in a 90-83 win at Oklahoma on Jan. 8.

Backcourt mate and fellow freshman Wayne Selden Jr. led Kansas to that victory with a season-high 24 points, while forward Perry Ellis added 22.

Oklahoma was led by Cameron Clark with a career-high 32 points and leading scorer Buddy Hield added 18, but Kansas shot 54.7 percent to overcome the high-scoring Sooners.

At 82.8 points per game, Oklahoma trails only Iowa State in the Big 12 in scoring and is the only team in the conference with five players averaging in double figures.

The Sooners pulled into a tie for second in the conference Saturday with an 86-73 home win over Kansas State. They too jumped out to a huge halftime lead, 41-22, to avenge a Jan. 14 loss at Kansas State.

Hield had 18 points while Isaiah Cousins chipped in 17 to lead Oklahoma to its third win in four games. It'll now go for its third win in four games against top-10 opponents with both teams getting just a day of rest.

"It's the nature of Big 12 play. All year long - we have played 14 now - and it seems like every time we have finished a game we are looking at another real good team a few days later," Oklahoma coach Lon Kruger said. "This time is a little quicker than that and it's against a really good team. Kansas, I think clearly is one of the best teams in the country. Allen Fieldhouse is a great place to play and a great atmosphere. Our guys have a ton of respect for Kansas, but athletes look forward to those types of challenges."

Kansas has won 12 straight home games against Oklahoma and 11 of the last 12 overall in the series.

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