NCAA Basketball Picks: Texas vs. Oklahoma

Darin Zank

Tuesday, February 17, 2015 1:29 PM GMT

Oklahoma is 3-0 both outright and against the spread in its last three meetings with rival Texas, including a blowout victory back in January in Austin. The Sooners shoot for the sweep of the season series when they host the Longhorns Tuesday night.

'Horns-Sooners Betting Odds
NCAA basketball odds opened this game with Oklahoma favored by either five or six points, with an OVER/UNDER of around 127. In the early betting most books then bumped the Sooners to -6.5 and -7.

Those who believe Texas might win this game outright could get +255 on the moneyline at 5Dimes.

 

The Match-Up
Coming into this season we thought Texas had a chance to win the Big 12, and we backed them with an NCAA futures bet. And the 'Horns started 12-2 this season, the best wins probably coming over Iowa, Cal and Connecticut. But Texas then lost six of its next eight games, falling to three games below .500 in Big 12 play. However, just as we were about to give up on the Longhorns they've now won three in a row, after dispatching of TCU and Texas Tech last week by scores of 66-43 and 56-41.

Texas led by 10 at the half Saturday against the Red Raiders, saw that lead diminish to six with about five minutes left, then scored the last nine points of the game to secure the victory. But UT came up just short of the cover as a 16-point favorite.

The 'Horns only shot 44 percent from the floor Saturday, but held Tech to 33 percent shooting. Texas also committed just seven fouls, which was why the Raiders only attempted three free-throws all day.

At 17-8 overall, 6-6 in conference play Texas sits in a tie for sixth place in the Big 12 with Baylor, four games behind first-place Kansas. If the 'Horns can just close out the regular season without falling flat on their faces they should go Dancing in March.

We also made a college basketball championship futures bet on Oklahoma before this season began, expecting a top-four finish in the Big 12. And so far the Sooners haven't done too much to make us feel too bad about that bet. OU opened this season 11-3, with wins over UCLA, Butler, Tulsa, Baylor and Texas. The Sooners then lost four of five, including a couple of games that cost us money, at West Virginia and at Baylor. But Oklahoma then won five in a row, victims including Oklahoma State, West Virginia and Iowa State. Last time out, though, the Sooners lost at Kansas State 59-56 on a long 3-pointers in the waning seconds.

Oklahoma held the Wildcats to just 27 percent shooting Saturday, but got whistled for 24 fouls, which led to a 36-17 differential in free-throw attempts.

OU had covered five spreads in a row, before losing outright as a three-point favorite Saturday.

At 17-8 overall and 8-5 in the Big 12 Oklahoma occupies third place, 2.5 games behind the Jayhawks.

As mentioned above the Sooners have won the last three meetings in this series, sweeping two games last season, then winning the first meeting this season five weeks ago 70-49, taking that game outright as six-point dogs on the road. Oklahoma jumped out to a 19-point first half lead, and basically cruised from there.

The Sooners only shot 42 percent from the field that night, but held Texas to just 30 percent shooting. Maybe that's why that game played UNDER its total of 135.

 

Stat Package
Texas is shooting 44 percent from the field this season, 34 percent from 3-point range and 72 percent from the FT line. At the other end of the court the Longhorns are limiting opponents to just 36 percent FG shooting, which ranks fourth-best in the country.

Oklahoma is shooting 45 percent from the floor, 35 percent from long range and 73 percent from the FT line, while holding opponents to just 37 percent FG shooting, which ranks sixth-best in the country.

 

'Horns-Sooners Betting Trends
Texas has leaned toward the UNDERS this season by an 11-7 margin, as UT games have averaged 127 points.

Oklahoma has skewed toward the UNDERS 14-8, as OU games have averaged 134 points.

 

'Horns-Sooners Free Pick
This game cuts across two of our most preferred college basketball handicapping theories; Oklahoma is coming off an upset, and therefore a candidate for a “bounce-back” play, but the Sooners, as the home team, might also be favored by a bucket or so too much. So we'll pass on making a play on the spread here. Instead, in thinking points might be hard to come by Tuesday night in Norman, we'll go with the UNDER on the total with out college basketball picks.

Free College Basketball Pick: Texas-Oklahoma UNDER 127 at BetOnline