Sooners Head to Ole Miss For Top-25 Battle – University of Oklahoma

NORMAN  The first top-25 matchup of Oklahoma’s season tips off Thursday at 6 p.m. when No. 23 OU travels to Oxford, Miss., to take on No. 12/16 Ole Miss at SJB Pavilion. Thursday’s showdown marks the 18th contest vs. a top-25 opponent under Jennie Baranczyk, who is in her third year at the helm of the program.

The game will air on the SEC Network with Brendan VanLengen and Basketball Hall of Famer Tamika Catchings on the call.


  • OU’s 2023-24 season marks the 50th in program history as Oklahoma launched its women’s basketball program in the 1974-75 year. Since its inception, Oklahoma has won a total of 12 conference championships and appeared in three Final Fours. The Sooners 23 appearances in the NCAA Tournament are second most in the Big 12 and 23rd most in the country. 

  • With Jennie Baranczyk leading the charge, Oklahoma is 3-0 against SEC opponents, including a 10-point win over Ole Miss last season in Norman. The Sooners also have wins over Mississippi State (2021) and Florida (2022), with OU’s average margin of victory over SEC teams standing at 19 points. Oklahoma will join the Southeastern Conference on July 1, 2024, after spending the last 28 years in the Big 12 Conference and the Sooners are 80-77 all-time vs. members of the league. 

  • A win on Thursday would be Baranczyk’s seventh win over a top-25 opponent since she arrived in Norman in 2021-22. 

  • In the last 15 years of women’s college basketball, there have only been two seasons in which a player with one or fewer starts has averaged 11.5 points, 5.5 rebounds and 1.5 assists per game – Vann is responsible for both. 

  • The Sooners are no strangers to winning close games – they’re 9-0 in games decided by one possession under Baranczyk, winning on a last-second shot five times. In contests decided by single digits, Oklahoma is 20-3 since the start of the 2021-22 campaign and the Sooners haven’t lost a game decided by five points or less since Nov. 20, 2021, vs. No. 9 Oregon. 


Thursday night’s game marks the fifth matchup between the Sooners and the Rebels, with each team winning two of the previous four matchups. OU knocked off Ole Miss in a highly-anticipated matchup in Norman last season, 69-59. OU’s other win came in 1997.

The Sooners are winless vs. Ole Miss outside of Norman, falling to the Rebels in the NCAA Sweet 16 in 2007 and in Oxford in 1998.


 A dominant third-quarter led No. 23 Oklahoma past Wichita State, 92-68, in the season opener Monday at Lloyd Noble Center in Norman. Payton Verhulst made her OU debut and tied her career-high with 16 points, while Aubrey Joens led the Sooners (1-0, 0-0 Big 12) with 19 points in the win. OU improved to 15-0 in non-conference home games in the regular season under third-year head coach Jennie Baranczyk. Oklahoma shot 56.5% as a team (62% in the second half) and held the Shockers to 35.2% (25 of 71) from the floor. OU outrebounded WSU 50-29, improving to 13-0 under Baranczyk when grabbing 50 boards.


Oklahoma returns to Norman on Sunday for a contest vs. Oral Roberts at Lloyd Noble Center at 2 p.m. The Sooners won last year’s meeting between the two sides, 105-94. 

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