Cory Jefferson, Marcus Smart

No. 22 Oklahoma State wins another thriller, this time in OT vs. Baylor

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Marcus Smart and Markel Brown finished a combined 8-38 from the floor and 1-11 from three, but Oklahoma State still managed to find a way to be up 14 on Baylor with about six minutes left.

That’s when Pierre Jackson finally woke up.

The diminutive point guard scored 20 of his 24 points after the break, hitting a pair of free throws to force overtime. Baylor took the early lead in the extra frame thanks to a pair of threes from Jackson, but Forte tied things up with a three of his own with a minute left, setting up a thrilling finish.

After Michael Cobbins blocked a shot from AJ Walton at one end, Brown took the loose ball the length of the court in about five seconds for the buzzer-beating layup.

The 69-67 win moves No. 22 Oklahoma State to 6-3 in the Big 12, putting them into a tie for third place in the league race.

But the more important note here involves Baylor.

The Bear’s comeback was impressive. When you’re down that much on the road to a ranked team and can force overtime, it’s notable. But it’s also notable when you’re down 14 points to a team that got an 8-38 shooting performance out of their two best players.

Jackson finished with 24 points, eight assists and 11 turnovers. We saw everything there is to see about Jackson in this game. He can hit big shots. He’s a nightmare to try and keep out of the paint. He’s a talented on-ball defender. And he can get into takeover mode too early and too often.

The problem is that he doesn’t have enough consistent help on the floor with him. Brady Heslip hasn’t hit a shot all season. Cory Jefferson and Isaiah Austin need Jackson to create for them. AJ Walton, Gary Franklin and LJ Rose? Meh.

Jackson’s not good enough to try and takeover games the way he does, but Baylor needs him to be the dominant ball-handler and playmaker.

That’s not a good combination.

You can find Rob on twitter @RobDauster.

Louisville’s Rick Pitino on allegations: ‘We will get through this’

Rick Pitino
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) Louisville coach Rick Pitino remains defiant that his program will survive the allegations in a book by an escort alleging that former Cardinals staffer Andre McGee hired her and other dancers to strip and have sex with recruits and players.

Pitino said Tuesday that the Cardinals “will get through this the right way.”

The coach told a packed room at a tipoff luncheon that he understands the motivation behind Katina Powell’s book “Breaking Cardinal Rules: Basketball and the Escort Queen,” but questions the need for the alleged activities given the talent his program has produced.

Pitino added, “We will find out the truth, whatever it may be, and those responsible will pay the price.”

Georgia Tech lands Class of 2016 guard

Brian Gregory
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Georgia Tech picked up its third Class of 2016 commitment on Tuesday as the Yellow Jackets landed a pledged from three-star guard Josh Okogie.

The 6-foot-4 guard is considered the No. 143 overall prospect in the national Class of 2016 rankings and Okogie played with a very talented Team CP3 in the Nike EYBL. In 22 games this spring and summer, Okogie averaged 10.6 points, 4.5 rebounds, 1.8 assists and 1.6 steals per game while shooting 45 percent from the field.

Okogie joins three-star wing Christian Matthews and four-star big man Romello White in head coach Brian Gregory’s Class of 2016 at Georgia Tech. The group is definitely a solid influx of talent with some coming from successful grassroots programs.