With Saturday’s narrow setback to No. 1 Oklahoma in the Pete Maravich Assembly Center, the LSU basketball team is 3-17 against the nation’s top team in The Associated Press poll that dates to the late 1940s.
Oklahoma trailed by 14 points in the second half but rallied for the win on a jumper by guard Isaiah Cousins with 3.8 seconds to play to stun 13,882 boisterous fans — most of them wearing gold.
Two of LSU’s three wins against the No. 1 team came in the PMAC. The Tigers won a 95-94 overtime thriller against Kentucky on Feb. 11, 1978 — after all five starters fouled out — and edged Arizona 66-65 on Dec. 21, 2002.
LSU also knocked off No. 1 Duke 62-54 in the NCAA tournament in Atlanta on March 23, 2006, en route to the program’s fourth Final Four appearance.
The LSU-OU contest was part of the Big 12/SEC Challenge on Saturday, which pitted the 10 schools from the Big 12 against 10 SEC teams.
LSU won its game in the Challenge a year ago when the Tigers went on the road to claim a 74-73 victory over West Virginia.
LSU trailed by 14 points early in the second half, just like Oklahoma faced a 14-point deficit Saturday, but the Tigers rallied and scored an upset on a driving layup by guard Josh Gray with 7.4 seconds to play.
After not having a blocked shot in its past three games, LSU had two Saturday when forward Aaron Epps got one late in the first half and guard Tim Quarterman had one in the second half.
The last block by LSU came with 1:29 to play in a Jan. 16 win over Arkansas when forward Craig Victor, who had all three of the Tigers’ blocks that night, swatted away a shot by Jabril Durham.
LSU failed to record a block in a loss at Texas A&M or in wins against Alabama and Georgia.
The LSU student section — many of whom camped out overnight on the PMAC ramps to assure themselves of a seat — serenaded Tigers guard Keith Hornsby with a rendition of “Happy Birthday” during warmups.
On his 24th birthday, Hornsby scored nine points in LSU’s hearbreaking loss.
LSU running back Leonard Fournette, a classmate of Victor’s at St. Augustine High, and Tigers quarterback Brandon Harris were among those in attendance Saturday.
Fournette, wearing his white No. 7 LSU jersey, drew a loud cheer when he was shown on the video boards high above midcourt about 25 minutes before tipoff.
OU forward Khadeem Lattin is the grandson of David Lattin, the center on the Texas Western (now Texas-El Paso) team that upset Kentucky in the 1966 NCAA championship game.
Texas Western’s historic upset of Kentucky was chronicled in the movie “Glory Road,” which was filmed at LSU’s Parker Coliseum.
Khadeem’s mother, Monica Lamb, played for the WNBA’s Houston Comets.
LSU’s Bill Franques, the baseball public address announcer and sports information contact, handled P.A. duties for the second game in a row as Dan Borne was again sidelined with laryngitis. ... Oklahoma coach Lon Kruger was 2-5 against LSU when he coached at Florida from 1991-96. ... LSU returns to SEC play at 6 p.m. Tuesday at Auburn in a game to be televised by the SEC Network.