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Oklahoma and Arkansas Confirm Multi-Year Series Still to Play in Tulsa

Delayed a year by the pandemic, tickets go on sale for OU and Arkansas' December meeting at the BOK Center on Aug. 20.

Delayed a year by the pandemic, the Oklahoma Sooners and Arkansas Razorbacks are primed to start their basketball series at the BOK Center in Tulsa.

Originally slated for Dec. 12, 2020, the first meeting between the two teams in Tulsa was scrapped when basketball teams had to contract their non-conference schedules last year.

The new series was initially set for two years, 2020 and 2021, with the option of playing two additional contests at the BOK Center in 2022 and 2023.

This year’s contest, set to take place on Dec. 11, 2021, remains set in stone from the initial announcement of the series.

On Monday, the BOK Center announced that tickets would go on sale for this December’s matchup on Aug. 20.

Tulsa is effectively the halfway point between the two campuses in Norman and Fayetteville, and the goal is to split the BOK Center in half, creating a 50-50 split atmosphere for the contest between the Sooners and the Razorbacks.

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“We're very excited to partner with the University of Arkansas and BOK Center in creating a new basketball series which we believe will develop into a fantastic pre-holiday tradition,” said OU Vice President and Athletics Director Joe Castiglione said last year when the series was initially announced. “Our goal is to turn this border rivalry into a weekend-long event that brings together two passionate fan bases and creates an atmosphere second to none. The setting is a world-class venue located approximately halfway between the two campuses. We've always received excellent support from our fans in the Tulsa area and we know there are a lot of passionate Razorbacks fans in that area too. We look forward to bringing this matchup to downtown Tulsa.”

It's unclear what happens to the non-conference series if OU's pending move to the Southeastern Conference is finalized while the game is still under contract. OU and Texas are scheduled to join the new league in 2025, though it is widely expected they will reach a settlement that will allow them to join well before then. OU-Arkansas in Tulsa could become an SEC game simply played at a neutral site, or it could remain on the schedule as a non-conference matchup, or it could be eliminated altogether.

Arkansas leads the all-time series with Oklahoma on the hardwood 16-12, including a 92-83 victory over the Sooners in the last matchup between the two programs at the PK80 invitational in 2017.

December’s matchup will be the third time the Sooners have played at the BOK Center having faced Tulsa in 2008 and USC in 2018. Arkansas has never played at the BOK Center. 

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