basketball-men-d1 flag | February 2, 2015

Five to Watch: Best college basketball games for Jan. 24-25

There are no top-10 matchups this weekend, but if you're on the couch these are your must-see games:

12-6 (3-3 BIG 12) 14-4 (2-3 BIG 12)
6 p.m. ET Saturday  ::  ESPN2

Why watch? On Jan. 3 in Norman, Oklahoma got 63 combined points from TaShawn Thomas (24), Buddy Hield (20) and Isaiah Cousins (19) in a 73-63 win against Baylor. The Bears had not given up more than 66 points in a game on the season. OU held BU to .373 field goal shooting (.290 after halftime) and posted a 40-35 rebounding edge against a Bears team that entered the game fourth nationally in rebounding advantage (plus-11.8 per game). Thomas was 11 for 17 from the field and added eight rebounds in his first Big 12 game, while Hield added 10 rebounds (his second career double-double) and four assists. Cousins was 4-for-8 from 3-point range and grabbed eight rebounds. ... You've gotta believe Baylor is looking to turn the tables on its home court.

Baylor's Taurean Prince Baylor's Taurean Prince
Statistically speaking: OU's Buddy Hield has scored at least 20 points in five of the team's six Big 12 games. In conference play, Hield, a junior guard, is averaging league highs of 23.0 points a game and 3.5 3-pointers a contest. ... Junior forward Taurean Prince leads three Bears who average double figures in scoring. He has started six of his 17 games (none in Big 12 play) and is averaging 12.2 points; Prince's .435 3-point shooting ranks second in the Big 12. He also averages 5.5 rebounds a game, third on the team.

Series history: Oklahoma holds a 42-11 series lead against Baylor and has won 37 of the past 42 meetings (which includes a streak of 30 consecutive wins that ended five years ago). The Sooners are 18-5 in games played in Waco. OU is 33-6 against the Bears since the inception of the Big 12 Conference (15-3 at the Ferrell Center) and has won five consecutive regular-season games in the series (including the past two in Waco).

Notebook: Baylor, which is in eighth place in the Big 12 (2-3), has lost two conference games by a total of three points (56-55 vs. Kansas; 63-61 at Kansas State). ... Oklahoma has played eight AP Top-25 opponents this year (ranked at time of competition), the most in the nation. Entering weekend play, only Kansas (seven), Iowa (six) and North Carolina (six) have played more than five AP Top-25 foes. ... In Big 12 play, Baylor averages 63.8 points a contest (sixth in the league) on .367 field-goal shooting (ninth), .351 3-point shooting (fourth) and .707 free-throw shooting (fifth). The Bears are third in rebounding margin (plus-5.4 per game), are tied for first in offensive rebounds (17.0 per game) and rank first in offensive rebounding percentage (.425). ... Oklahoma is the only Big 12 team that has started the same five players in every game this season: Buddy Hield, Isaiah Cousins, Ryan Spangler, Jordan Woodard and TaShawn Thomas.

at No. 17 TEXAS
No. 5 DUKE
at No. 12 UTAH
1 p.m. Saturday
Regional / ESPN
  2 p.m. Saturday
  2 p.m. Sunday
  8:30 p.m. Sunday

Information compiled from Oklahoma and Baylor team sites.

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