Busting Brackets

Oklahoma Basketball: Why Duke Miles is most important team transfer for 2024-25

High Point v Longwood
High Point v Longwood / Isaiah Vazquez/GettyImages

Things have not exactly gone according to plan since Porter Moser took over this Oklahoma program back in 2021. The Sooners have missed the NCAA Tournament in each of those three seasons, struggling to make consistent headway in a very tough Big 12. That task won’t get easier this season thanks to conference realignment as well as some major moves on this roster.

Among last season’s five starters, three transferred away, including top scorers Javian McCollum and Otega Oweh, who both showed signs of brilliance last season. Sophomore guard Milos Uzan is also gone, though forward Jalon Moore at least returns, representing a large portion of the returning production for the Sooners.

There are new faces in Norman thanks to Moser and his staff’s utilization of the Transfer Portal, especially with so many holes to fill. Among the new additions is Fairfield transfer Brycen Goodine, former Alabama forward Mohamed Wague, and Dayton guard Kobe Elvis, though one other name might just be the most important one to the Sooners this upcoming season.

Duke Miles arrives onto the scene after experiencing success at the mid-major level. A guard originally from Montgomery, Alabama, he spent three years in his home state at Troy before taking a major step forward as a redshirt junior at High Point last season. Miles became one of the best players in the Big South, averaging 17.5 points and 3.6 assists per game while helping lead the Panthers to 27 wins and a regular season title.

The First Team All-Big South guard opted to transfer in the offseason and has found a home with Moser and company in the SEC. It’ll be a major step up for Miles, but he’s a major offensive weapon who’ll take up a significant role with the Sooners as a senior. He’s coming off career-best points and assists numbers as his game really transformed while joining High Point, and the Sooners are hoping a similar jump can happen again.

This isn’t about Miles coming to town and taking on the mantle alone. The Sooners lost a lot of talent in the offseason and are depending on not just him but these other new pieces as well. You won’t see Oklahoma picked to finish near the top of the SEC in their first season in the league. Still, we could still see a special season out of Miles. After all, Dalton Knecht proved last season that great scorers at the mid-major level can be great players on the biggest stage.

Next. Top 25 team winners from offseason transfer portal. Top 25 team winners from offseason transfer portal. dark

We’re not saying that Miles will have a Knecht-level season; he’ll just hope to be a sparkplug and try to get Oklahoma back to the Big Dance. With all of these moving pieces, can the Sooners have a bounce-back season and make serious noise in 2025? Is Miles capable of being a big-time scorer in the SEC?