College Basketball Betting Preview: Texas Longhorns at #14 Kansas Jayhawks

Texas Longhorns at #14 Kansas Jayhawks
Saturday, February 16, 2013, 9:00 pm Eastern, TV: ESPN

Phog Allen Fieldhouse – Lawrence, Kansas
Opening Line: Kansas -14 1/2
Current Line: Kansas -14
Opening Total: 129
Current Total: 133
Opening Money Line: Kansas -1200 / Texas +800
Current Money Line: Kansas -1400 / Texas +900

Kansas is a 14 point favorite at home against Texas Saturday.

Kansas is a 14 point favorite at home against Texas Saturday.

Although Texas is 11-13 this season, and near the bottom of the Big 12 standings with a 3-8 record, the Longhorns received a boost when point guard Myck Kabongo returned from a 23 game suspension for violating NCAA rules Wednesday night. The Longhorns gutted out an 89-86 double overtime win over Iowa St Wednesday. Kabongo had 13 points and 7 assists in his season debut. Texas has gone to 12 straight NCAA tournaments, but will have to win the Big 12 tournament at this point to continue that streak.

Next up for the Longhorns is a trip to 20-4 Kansas. The Jayhawks are tied for the conference lead with Oklahoma St and Kansas St. All three teams have 8-3 records heading into Saturday’s games. The Jayhawks beat Kansas St 83-62 Monday night to snap a three game losing streak for Kansas. The Jayhawks are looking to win their 9th straight regular season Big 12 title.

Kansas leads the series 21-7, including 10-1 in Lawrence. The Jayhawks have won 10 of the last 12 meetings. Kansas won 64-59 last month in Austin. Texas had an 11 point lead in the second half, but were unable to hold the lead. Texas had a chance to tie it up with 13 seconds left but guard Julien Lewis missed a corner 3 with plenty of time left on the shot clock.

Texas is coached by Rick Barnes.  Texas has losses to Chamindade and USC in the Maui Invitational, to Georgetown in New York City, to UCLA in Houston, at Michigan St, Baylor, Iowa St, Oklahoma, Kansas St, West Virginia twice, and at Oklahoma St. Three of their losses were in overtime. The Longhorns have key wins over Fresno St, Mississippi St in Maui, North Carolina Rice, Texas Tech, TCU and Iowa St. Texas is 12-9 ATS and the total is 8-10 this season.

Texas is outscoring teams 65-63 this season. The Longhorns are shooting 41.4% from the field and 28.4% from 3 point range. Texas makes 64.3% of their free throws. The Longhorns are 264th or worse in all three shooting categories out of 347 teams. The Longhorns are #45 in rebounding with 38.1 per game, and they give up 33.7 per game. Texas opponents are shooting 36.1% from the field and 26.1% from 3 point range. The Longhorns are second in the former and lead the nation in the latter. Texas averages 12 assists, 6 steals, 5 blocks and 16 turnovers.

Guard Sheldon McClellan averages 14.5 points, and 4.3 rebounds. Guard Julien Lewis averages 11.1 points, 3.5 rebounds, 1.3 assists, and 1.2 steals per game. Guard Javan Felix averages 8.4 points, 3.3 rebounds, 5.4 assists, and 1.3 steals per game.Forward Ioannis Papapetrou averages 8.4 points, 4.7 rebounds, and 1.5 assists.  Forward Jonathan Holmes averages 7.5 points, 6.8 rebounds, and a block per game. He also returned against Iowa St, after missing 5 games with a broken hand. Center Cameron Ridley averages 4.5 points, 4.6 rebounds, and 1.8 blocks per game. Connor Lammert, DeMarcus Holland, and Prince Ibah will also get some time in the rotation. With Kabongo and Holmes back, Texas has their full rotation back for the first time this season.

Kansas is coached by Bill Self. The  losses for the Jayhawks this season came against Michigan St in Atlanta early in the season, at home against Oklahoma St, and at TCU and Oklahoma. The Jayhawks have key wins over Washington St, Saint Louis, and Oregon St all in Kansas City, along with a road wins at Ohio St,  Texas Tech, Texas, Kansas St and West Virginia and home wins over Colorado, Richmond, Temple, Iowa St Baylor,Oklahoma and Kansas St. The Jayhawks are 10-13 ATS and the total is 10-10 this season.

Kansas is outscoring teams 74-61 this season. Kansas is #32 in field goal percentage at 46.9% and  35.5% from three point range. The Jayhawks are shooting 72.2% from the free throw line. Kansas averages 39 rebounds per game, and gives up 29.8 per game. The Jayhawks are #22 in rebounding nationally.  Kansas opponents are shooting 36.1% from the field and 31.8% from 3 point range. Kansas is #1 in opponent’s field goal percentage. The Jayhawks average 15 assists, 7 steals, 7 blocks and 13 turnovers a game.

Guard Ben McLemore averages 16.8 points, 5.5 rebounds, 1.9 assists, and 1.2 steals per game. Center Jeff Withey averages 13.2 points, 8.2 rebounds, and 4.1 blocks per game. He needs to blocks to break the Big 12 career record for blocked shots. Guard Travis Releford averages 11.8 points, 3.8 rebounds, 2.7 assists, and 1.3 steals per game. Guard Elijah Johnson averages  9.1 points, 3 rebounds, and 4.6 assists per game. Kevin Young averages 7.7 points, 6.8 rebounds, and 1.2 steals per game. Perry Ellis, Naadir Tharpe, Andrew White III and Jamari Taylor make up the rest of the rotation.

Texas is 4-1 ATS after a straight up win, 6-2 overall, and in Big 12 games. The Longhorns are 4-1 ATS in the last 5 in this series, and were the underdog in each of those games.

Kansas is 4-1 ATS after a straight up win of 20 points or more, 1-4 in Saturday games, overall, in Big 12 games, and against teams with winning road records. Although 5 of the last 6 games in this series overall have gone under, the over is 6-2 in the last 8 in Lawrence between the teams.

Kabongo will make a difference for Texas as he shakes off the rust. He led the Longhorns in minutes with 35 in the double overtime win over Iowa St. Kansas might overlook this team as they have a huge game at fellow conference leader Oklahoma St coming up this week. However, despite Texas having a down year, this is still a big rivalry. I like Kansas to win at home, but the gritty Longhorns stay within the 14 point number.

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Posted by on Feb 16 2013. Filed under College Basketball, Headlines. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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