Sooner or later, this game had to happen
NORMAN, Okla. — Oklahoma and Oral Roberts have deliberately avoided playing each other in baseball for six seasons. Yesterday, the NCAA reunited the in-state rivals for a postseason matchup.
The Sooners (44-15) earned a No. 1 seed in the 64-team NCAA field and will host fourth-seeded Oral Roberts (35-25) on Friday in the first round of the double-elimination Norman Regional.
Oklahoma learned Sunday it would host the regional and coach Sunny Golloway thought Oral Roberts might be the Sooners' first-round foe. Golloway coached at the private Tulsa university for eight years before coming to Oklahoma in 2004. His assistant, Rob Walton, succeeded him at Oral Roberts and this season guided the Golden Eagles to their 13th straight Summit League tournament title.
Because of their friendship, Golloway and Walton decided not to schedule each other's team during the regular season.
"I took a tremendous amount of pride in building that program and Rob has done a tremendous job continuing that tradition," Golloway said. "We don't see a benefit playing each other and making our relationship more difficult. Rob Walton is a good friend and a good man and on Friday, we'll compete, and the game will come and go and our relationship will prosper."