|11:00 AM PT12:00 PM MT1:00 PM CT2:00 PM ET7:00 PM GMT3:00 PM 北京时间12:00 PM MST2:00 PM EST, Jan 5, 2019
Lloyd Noble Center, Norman, Oklahoma Attendance: 10,906
Oklahoma St.-Oklahoma Preview
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Jamuni McNeace didn't grow up around Bedlam basketball.
McNeace, Oklahoma's senior center, split his time between Illinois and Texas before arriving in Norman, so he wasn't familiar with the Oklahoma-Oklahoma State rivalry before becoming a member of the Sooners.
But in his fourth season, McNeace now knows plenty about the game.
"It's probably my favorite game of the year, to be honest," McNeace said. "OSU, they come out and compete. They have a good fan base when we go out there in Stillwater. It's probably one of my favorite games."
The No. 23 Sooners (11-2, 0-1 Big 12) will play host to Oklahoma State (6-7, 0-1) on Saturday in the teams' first meeting of the season.
McNeace is expected to play a bigger role Saturday after being limited for much of the past month with an ankle injury. He has played just nine total minutes over the past two games, including two minutes in Wednesday's loss at Kansas.
He missed two games in early December with the injury before returning in a limited role. But McNeace was full-go in practice Thursday for the first time since suffering the injury.
"A couple times I felt like I was real close," McNeace said. "These couple weeks we had off for Christmas break kind of helped me out. I'm not in pain anymore and I'm just trying to get back in the game.
"It's probably more of my confidence trying to get out there. I'm just trying to tell myself that the ankle's not hurting."
The Sooners are 5-1 since McNeace's injury.
The Cowboys have lost five of their past seven games, including Wednesday's home loss to Iowa State to open Big 12 play.
"We're close," Oklahoma State coach Mike Boynton said. "It's kind of what you'd expect in this league, though. In the last two or three minutes, it's going to be a two- or three-possession game, and the team that executes the best and makes a few shots is going to be the team that wins.
"We're not far off, but we're still not quite over the hump."
Neither team is trying to act like there isn't an extra emphasis on this game.
"A little more intensity, a little more fan involvement, players, across the board," Sooners coach Lon Kruger said. "It's an exciting college basketball game. We look forward to all of them, of course, but this brings a little extra special edge to it."
The Cowboys have won four of the past five meetings between the teams, including two of three last season.
Like Oklahoma, which features just two rotation players from the state, Oklahoma State also doesn't have many players who grew up around Bedlam.
"They don't quite understand it but we've tried to set a tone in their minds," Boynton said. "On the scoreboard, it'll count as a win or a loss, but it means more. We don't shy away from that. It means something in recruiting. It means something to our fans and former players so it means something to us."
Updated January 4, 2019