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2 Big Names Mentioned For The Oklahoma Basketball Job

Oklahoma Cheerleaders performing at a basketball game.

COLUMBUS, OH - MARCH 22: Oklahoma Sooners cheerleaders perform in the second half against the Dayton Flyers during the third round of the 2015 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament at Nationwide Arena on March 22, 2015 in Columbus, Ohio. (Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images)

With Lon Kruger announcing his retirement from college basketball, the Oklahoma basketball team suddenly has one of the most high-profile vacancies in the country. And some big names are already starting to make the rounds.

Following the announcement of Kruger's retirement, college basketball reporter indicated two names that may be of interest to Sooners fans. One is Maryland head coach Mark Turgeon, and the other is Oregon head coach Dana Altman.

Turgeon hails from the state of Kansas and has led the likes of Wichita State, Texas A&M and Maryland on solid NCAA Tournament runs. He is 471-272 as a coach has taken the Shockers and the Terps on Sweet 16 runs.

Altman is another midwest native and has turned Oregon into one of the Pac-12's basketball powerhouses in his decade-plus with them. In seven NCAA Tournament appearances with the Ducks, he's reached the Sweet 16 five times.

Both of them would be fantastic coaches at any program, let alone Oklahoma. But even Katz acknowledged that getting them may not be easy.

Being the follow-up act to Lon Kruger will be tough enough for any coach. But taking them farther than Kruger did may be exponentially harder.

In his 10 years at Oklahoma, the Sooners reached the NCAA Tournament seven times. They reached the Sweet 16 in 2015 and the Final Four in 2016, but struggled to escape the first weekend in their five other appearances.

But being the head coach at Oklahoma can offer perks that few other Power Five programs can match. If they can find the right coach, perhaps Oklahoma can start making deeper NCAA Tournament runs more frequently.

Who should Oklahoma hire as their next head coach?