NORMAN- Porter Moser’s defensive record precedes him.
All the way back to his first head coaching job at Arkansas-Little Rock, Moser garnered a reputation for defensive turnarounds, taking the Trojans from worst to first in defensive field goal percentage in the Sun Belt Conference.
In 2020-21, Moser’s Loyola Chicago team led the country in scoring defense (holding opposing teams to 56.1 points per game), but his team’s offensive prowess was often overlooked. Not only did the Ramblers boast the best scoring defense in the nation, but they ranked No. 6 nationally in offensive field goal percentage (49.8 percent) as well.
“The style is defense is gonna create offense,” Moser said on Wednesday during his introductory press conference at the Lloyd Noble Center. “That’s the misnomer about (our defense) in our locker room.
“Our whole mantra that we were was defense creates offense. You can run on misses. You can run off turnovers.”
Playing great defense doesn’t mean the brand of basketball has to be unattractive, and that philosophy starts with the caliber of player being brought into the program.
“I start every shoot around with we’ve got to run. We’ve got to get the tempo going, we’ve got to pass it ahead and space it. You get that by guarding. I talk about that in the recruiting process,” Moser said. “I’m talking about being a two-way player.
“That’s the buzzword now at the highest level is a two-way player. Kobe, LeBron, Klay Thompson, Kawhi Leonard, they’re two-way players. That’s what I like talking to our young student athletes about that.”
Taking the step up to Oklahoma, Moser will now have the opportunity to push his recruiting to new heights. Though Oklahoma basketball will never be the biggest show on campus, Moser said he was excited about the recruiting opportunities that will be afforded to him and his staff based off the national recognition of OU football alone.
“People recognize the OU brand. They recognize Jordan brand. But they also recognize the excellence that has been going on in other sports,” he said. “I can’t wait to parlay that in all the sports, especially football. It’s a household brand. I can’t wait to learn and be a part of that and definitely use that and sell that excitement of togetherness with our recruits.”
Moser also said he can’t wait to learn from all the other coaches on campus. Since athletic director Joe Castiglione arrived in Norman, the Sooners have brought home 18 national titles, with only one of those being football. There will be plenty of different people Moser can learn from in the Oklahoma athletic department alone, but he did single out one coach that he can’t wait to meet.
“I can’t wait to use the success of what coach Lincoln Riley has done,” Moser said. “His energy, the way he does things, I can’t wait to learn from that.”
While he gets reacquainted with the recruiting landscape, it had been a decade since Moser was on staff at Saint Louis and two decades since he was an assistant at Texas A&M, Moser will lean on the Oklahoma brand to help sell his personal style of basketball.
“Just that logo, just that OU, you know what OU is,” he said. “That brand is of excellence. To sell excellence, I can’t wait to use it.”