Though there are no unbeaten or winless clubs in the Big 12 Conference, to this point, there are basically upper or lower tier teams. The college basketball betting odds we’re looking at are clubs from the latter group.
Texas Tech and TCU are both 1-4 in league play and the other aspect they have in common is each lone conference victory has come against Texas. Tonight on ESPNU at 7:00 Eastern, one of these squads can start trying to climb up in the standings in what basketball rating expert Jeff Sagarin has as the toughest conference in college basketball.
For this Big 12 battle on Martin Luther King Day, let’s learn more about each team and come up with a winner for NCAA basketball picks.
After starting 11-1, Texas Tech (11-5, 8-5 ATS), has lost four in a row in league play and overcoming the last loss will not be easy. The Red Raiders were playing Baylor dead even in Lubbock, tied at 60 in the waning seconds when the Bears Lester Medford hits a three-pointer at the buzzer. Coach Tubby Smith will have to regroup his team and depend on senior guards Devaugntah Williams (13.8 points a game) and Toddrick Gotcher (11.3 PPG) to not only carry the scoring load, but to be team leaders also.
Texas Tech averages 73.7 PPG and most them come the hard way be working the ball for better shots, since they only make five three-point baskets a contest on 30.3% shooting and are far worse on the road at only 25.6%. As one might expect, the Red Raiders do good work defensively being a Smith-coached team and opposing teams convert on just 40.7% of attempts and ring up 67.1 PPG.
The Horned Frogs (9-8, 6-5 ATS) have been better than Texas Tech, at least against the NCAA basketball odds in the Big 12 at 3-2 ATS vs. the Red Raiders 1-4 spread mark. As underdogs, besides beating the Longhorns, they have covered against West Virginia and Kansas. Though TCU gives up essentially the same amount of points as tonight’s foe (67.7), they do lose focus on the defensive end and get caught out of position, which is why the Mountaineers shot 57.7% and Baylor lit them up for 63.3%. To win this game at home, the Horned Frogs has to play with diligence on defense.