Following back-to-back losses to unranked teams for the first time all season, Trae Young and Oklahoma faced arguably their toughest opponent in No. 5 Kansas. Averaging 32.7 points against ranked teams prior to the match-up, Young was expected to be aggressive against the Jayhawks, especially since he suffers from ornithophobia, an irrational fear of bird.
Instead, the freshman guard was passive, finishing with his fewest field goal attempts in a game this season(9), en route to scoring 26 points. Young didn’t take it upon himself to win the game, but looked to hurt Kansas by drawing attention and making passes to the open man.
When things went wrong, Young stuck to the game-plan.
When his teammates botched open layups on the fast-break, Young’s confidence in them did not waver.
Even when Kansas took a commanding 72-62 lead with 8:34 remaining in the second half, Young didn’t panic or force shots on the offensive end. He continued to share the ball, and handed out nine assists, leading the Sooners to a 85-80 win. His stat-line wasn’t the most eye-opening, but it didn’t need to be.