NCAA Betting Preview: Texas at Kansas Jayhawks
By: David Schwab
Friday, January 21, 2011
Tristan Thompson leads a young Texas squad into Kansas on Saturday.
The Texas Longhorns invade Phog Allen Fieldhouse in Lawrence this Saturday afternoon to take on the Kansas Jayhawks in a showdown of Big 12 powers. Tip-off is set for 1 p.m. (PT) and the game will be broadcast nationally on CBS.
Texas comes into this game riding high after knocking off No. 10 Texas A&M in convincing fashion with an 81-60 victory this past Wednesday night as a 6 ½-point home favorite. The total went ‘over’ the 131 ½ point line. This win followed a 66-46 win over Oklahoma as a 19-point home favorite last Saturday. The Longhorns are currently 15-3 straight-up on the year and an impressive 10-3 against the spread. The two conference wins raised their record to 3-0 SU in the Big 12.
Sophomore guard-forward Jordan Hamilton continues to be an unstoppable force for Texas with an average of 19.7 points and 7.1 rebounds per game. Freshman forward Tristan Thompson heads up a trio of other starters scoring in double-figures with 13.1 points and leads the team in rebounds with 7.7 a game. Freshman guard Cory Joseph rounds things out for the youthful Longhorns with 11.2 points and a team-high 3.2 assists per game.
Texas is averaging 78 points a game and shooting 46 percent from the field. It is hitting 37.6 percent of its shots from three-point range, but just 65.2 percent of its free-throws. The one area that the Longhorns have been really dominant is on the boards. Texas ranks sixth in the nation with an average of 42 rebounds per game.
Kansas continues to roll through the season with a perfect 18-0 record SU, but is just 8-8 ATS. The Jayhawks remained undefeated with a 63-60 victory over Nebraska last Saturday as a 15 ½-point home favorite followed by an 85-65 win over Baylor as a 3 ½-point road favorite this past Monday to raise their conference record to 3-0 SU.
The Morris twins have established themselves as two of the best sharp-shooters in men’s basketball. Marcus leads the team with an average of 17.2 points per game and is shooting 61.2 percent from the field, while his brother Markieff is shooting 57.3 percent and averaging 13.2 points per game. These two are also averaging a combined 15.6 rebounds per game.
Freshman guard Josh Selby is the team’s third leading scorer with 12.1 points per game and junior guard Tyshawn Taylor leads in assists with an average of five.
It is no wonder that the Jayhawks are ranked first in the nation in shooting percentage. They are ranked eighth in scoring with an average of 83.2 points per game and fourth in assists with an average of 18.5. Kansas is at a slight disadvantage to the Longhorns when it comes to rebounds with 39.7 per game.
Texas is 5-1 ATS in its last six games on the road and 6-1 ATS in its last seven games overall. The total has stayed ‘under’ in four of its last six games.
Kansas is 2-4 ATS in its last six home games and 1-3 ATS in its last four games overall. The total has gone ‘over’ in four of its last six games.
Head-to-head, the Jayhawks have won seven of the last nine games SU and are 3-0 both SU and ATS in the last three meetings. The total has gone ‘over’ in five of the last seven meetings.
This will be a stern test for Kansas with the Longhorns coming into this game playing at such a high level. The Jayhawks at home should be able to grind out the win SU, but stick with Texas to get the win ATS if the line opens at four or more points.