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Three Thoughts on Oklahoma State’s 78-37 Victory against Ole Miss

Marshall tries to collect himself after the Cowboys dismantled Ole Miss.




It’s a good thing that game didn’t tip until 9:37 p.m. local time because it wasn’t appropriate for daytime TV.

Oklahoma State pulverized Ole Miss 78-37 on Friday night in the NIT Season Tip-Off championship game in Brooklyn. It was the second-largest margin of victory in a road game in program history. Here are three thoughts from it.

1. What Does All This Mean?

It turns out Mike Boynton knows what he is talking about.

After the Western Michigan game, I asked Boynton if he was concerned at all that his team hadn’t put away teams like Oral Roberts, Yale and Western Michigan.

“Not really,” he responded. “Not at all. I get it. I understand our fans would like to see us win by 30, a runaway and maybe everybody plays a little bit more. I don’t know if that’s necessarily good for this group.”

The Cowboys survived all of those games then went out to Brooklyn and beat Syracuse and Ole Miss by a combined 55 points and left with some hardware.

The Cowboys will likely be ranked come Monday. It went from the country going, “Well I think OSU is better than it was last year,” to, “Holy crap, look out for that team,” in a three-day span.

Sure, this is only seven games into the Cowboys’ season, but this is a good basketball team. The Cowboys host Georgetown on Wednesday. Gallagher-Iba Arena might be sold out … for the first game of December. This feels deadly close to OSU being a basketball school in a few years. Is that an over-reaction to one game? Probably, but the Cowboys just won a preseason tournament championship by 41 freaking points.

I don’t know how to end this thought, so here is Hidde Roessink (a freshman) dunking after Avery Anderson (a freshman) attempted a circus layup that nearly went in.

2. Defense

That was one of the more dominant defensive performances I recall ever seeing in a basketball game with two Power Five schools in it.

The Rebels shot 26 percent from the field and 5 percent (!!!) from 3-point range. Ole Miss shot 20 3-pointers and made one.

It wasn’t just the players on the floor crushing the Rebels either. Boynton was crushing Ole Miss coach Kermit Davis with his switches from man-to-man to zone.

At one point in the first half, Davis called a timeout because of a lengthy OSU run. Davis likely drew up some play to hopefully get the Rebels out of their rut, but the Cowboys came out of the timeout in a 2-3 zone, nullifying that entire timeout.

The Cowboys have probably run as much zone this year than they did in Boynton’s first two seasons together, but it has worked well. The Cowboys are long with Thomas Dziagwa and Isaac Likekele at the top of the 2-3 both standing at 6-foot-4. Then there is 6-6 Lindy Waters and 6-7 Cam McGriff on either side of 6-10 Yor Anei.

The Rebels wanted nothing to do with Anei, evident by the fact that they shot 20 3s despite making only one.

3. Yor and Ice

That’ll be the name of their buddy cop flick someday.

I feel like I keep going back to these two writing thoughts, but OSU’s two sophomores keep making me write about them. They didn’t even lead OSU in scoring Friday night, but they had so many highlights.

We’ll start with Yor Anei. He isn’t just a rim protector anymore. But don’t worry, he can still do that …

He can do it all now and against good competition. He hits about one face-up, mid-range jumper a game, and his post moves make the whole gym gasp.

Anei won the tournament’s MVP with two-game totals of 33 points, 17 rebounds and six blocks.

Isaac Likekele made the all-tournament team with his totals of 35 points, 11 rebounds, 12 assists and eight steals.

Ice is unstoppable when going to the rim. The only answer teams had for him the past few days was just hoping he missed whatever semi-contested layup they were about to give him.

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