Texas Longhorns vs. Texas Tech Red Raiders Betting Preview

The last game of the Big 12 Tournament quarterfinals will feature the no. 20 Texas Tech Red Raiders facing the no. 12 Texas Longhorns. On the neutral ground at the T-Mobile Center in Kansas City, the Red Raiders are a slight 1.5-point favorite, with the over/under for the game set at 136.5 points.

The Longhorns are starting to heat up again, heading into the Big 12 Tournament. After losing a road game to Texas Tech in late February, Texas won three straight to close out the regular season. The Longhorns finished 11-6 inside the Big 12, which gave them the no.3 seed in the tournament and were 17-7 overall.

Meanwhile, the Red Raiders were a modest 9-8 in conference play, which is why they fell to the no. 6 seed. Of course, a 17-9 record overall will help ensure a good seed in the NCAA Tournament for Texas Tech. However, the Red Raiders would prefer a good showing in the Big 12 Tournament after losing four of their final seven regular-season games, including a loss to Baylor in the season finale.

Mac and the Gang

Texas Tech has relied heavily on Georgetown transfer Mac McClung all season. Without his 16.1 points per game, the Red Raiders would likely be lost. McClung handles a lot of the ball-handling duties and does his best to get his teammates involved. Of course, his best skill is his third-point shooting. The caveat is that he needs his teammates to pose a scoring threat to help him get open looks.

In fact, the question that Texas Tech faces from game to game is how much they can get from their supporting cast. When the Red Raiders beat Texas in late February, they had four other players score in double figures other than McClung. Sophomore Terrence Shannon has been reliable for most of the season. But the Red Raiders need Kyler Edwards and Kevin McCullar to show more consistency, especially against the kind of competition Texas Tech will face in the NCAA Tournament.

The Texas Trio

Much like Texas Tech, the Longhorns are a guard-oriented team. The trio of Andrew Jones, Matt Coleman, and Courtney Ramey has been reliable all season. All three average at least 12 points per game, while Ramey and Coleman both average over four assists per game. The three-man backcourt does a great job of sharing the basketball, making it hard for opposing defenses to focus on stopping just one of them without the other two doing some damage.

The X-factor for Texas coming down the stretch is freshman forward Greg Brown. He heads to the postseason averaging 10.3 points and 6.7 rebounds per game. However, he’s only averaged 7.5 points and 3.3 rebounds per game over his last four games. That includes a 5-point, 1-rebound performance in the loss to Texas Tech. That’s not going to cut it if the Longhorns expect to beat the quality competition.

Triple Threat

The Red Raiders beat Texas twice during the regular season. Even when the Longhorns had one of their best shooting games of the season, they still fell short. Don’t expect things to go any differently now. Bet on Texas Tech to win and cover on Thursday.

Prediction: Texas Tech to win

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