A big early season battle looms Saturday in the Big 12 Conference as No. 8 ranked Texas Tech travels to play Texas. Texas Tech is 14-1 overall and 3-o in the Big 12, while Texas is 10-5 overall and 2-1 in the conference. The Longhorns will be primed to knock off the Red Raiders at home, but it won’t be easy as Texas Tech has met just about every challenge so far this year.
Tech turns back Oklahoma
The only blemish on Texas Tech’s record came at the hands of No. 1 ranked Duke, who beat them at home, 79-68 on Dec. 20. Other than that, the Red Raiders have rolled over their opponents. Most recently, they beat conference rival, No. 23 ranked Oklahoma 66-59 at home on Tuesday. Oklahoma had a 35-31 halftime lead and extended the lead to 40-33 with 17 minutes left before Tech came back to take the lead for good with about 4 minutes left. Jarrett Culver scored 23 points to lead Texas Tech while Davide Moretti added 12 points. Tech shot 45 percent from the field and 31 percent from three and held OU to 32 percent shooting. They had 8 steals and 8 blocked shots, with Tariq Owen recording 4 blocks.
Beard is extremely close to Bobby Knight who lives in Lubbock. Likes having him as an unpaid consultant. I'm told here's at Texas Tech for as long as they want him or at least until Knight passes away. https://t.co/uoxa88gyh2
— Mike Irwin (@MikeIrwinPTN) January 11, 2019
Culver leads Tech in just about every category with 19 points, 6 rebounds, and 4 assists per game. He shoots 56 percent from the field and 40 percent from three. Matt Mooney averages 11 points, while Moretti averages 10. Owens averages 2.5 blocks per game, which is 13th in the US. Tech is relentless on defense, allowing teams to score just 53 points per game against them, which is second lowest in the country. Opponents shoot just 33 percent against them from the field and 25 percent from three — both are tops in the nation. Offensively, they average 73 points per game on 48 percent shooting including 34 percent from three. they average 12 rebounds, 14 assists, and 13 turnovers per game. They average 7.6 steals and 5.3 blocks per game.
Texas comeback falls short
The Longhorns suffered their first conference loss last Tuesday, falling on the road to Oklahoma State, 71-68. The Cowboys jumped out to a 17 point halftime lead,and hung on for dear life as Texas stormed back in the second half. Kerwin Roach led Texas with 18 points, while Jaxon Hayes added 13 points in the loss. Texas shot 42 percent from the field, but was ice cold from three. The Longhorns made just 2 of 22 from three, or 9 percent. They were also out rebounded 38-30.
Roach leads Texas in scoring with 13 points per game, while Hayes, Matt Coleman, and Dylan Osetkowski average 10 points per game apiece. Hayes, a forward, shoots almost 75 percent from the field, which is tops in the country. He also averages 2.6 blocks per game, which is among the top 10 in the country. Defensively, Texas allows just 64 points per game. Opponents shoot just 39 percent from the field and 32 percent from three. They average 6.4 steals and 4.9 blocks per game. Offensively, they average 72 points per on 43 percent shooting and 32 percent shooting from three. They average 36 rebounds, 13 assists, and 11 turnovers per game.
- Red Raiders are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 road games vs. a team with a home winning % of greater than .600.
- Red Raiders are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 road games.
- Red Raiders are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 road games vs. a team with a winning home record.
- Red Raiders are 1-8-2 ATS in their last 11 vs. Big 12.
- Red Raiders are 0-3-1 ATS in their last 4 games following a straight up win.
- Red Raiders are 0-3-1 ATS in their last 4 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600.
- Red Raiders are 0-4-1 ATS in their last 5 games vs. a team with a winning straight up record.
- Red Raiders are 0-4-1 ATS in their last 5 games overall
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
This will be a defensive battle as these are two of the best defensive teams in the country. The Red Raiders are second in scoring defense and have one of the best shot blockers in the country. Texas is also very stingy on defense. Texas Tech has not been very good against the spread this year, going 5-9. Plus, the Red Raiders are 0-4 ATS in the last 4 meetings between these teams and 0-4 ATS in the last 4 meetings in Texas. Take the home team, Texas, in a pick ’em.
Full-Game Total Pick
This will be a hard fought battle played in the low 60s, and while these are both great defensive teams, the over/under is very low at 123.5. Texas averages 73 points per game while Tech gives up just 53 points per game. At home, Texas will be somewhere in the middle of those numbers. Tech, on the other hand, averages about 73 points while Texas gives up 64. The over is 7-0 in Red Raiders last 7 Saturday games. Take the over.