Big 12 First Round Betting Preview: Texas A & M Aggies vs Oklahoma Sooners

2012 Big 12 Tournament – First Round
#9 Texas A&M Aggies vs #8 Oklahoma Sooners
Sprint Center – Kansas City, Missouri
Wednesday, March 7, 2012, 7:00 pm Eastern, TV: YES, Altitude
Opening Line: Oklahoma -1
Current Line: Oklahoma -1 1/2
Opening Total: 123
Current Total: 124
Opening Money Line: Oklahoma -125 / TAMU +105
Current Money Line: Oklahoma -125 / TAMU +105

Oklahoma and Texas A&M meet in the first round of the Big 12 tournament Wednesday in Kansas City.

The 13-17 Texas A&M Aggies take on the 15-15 Oklhaoma Sooners in the first round of the Big 12 tournament. The Aggies finished in 9th place in the conference with a 4-14 record, while Oklahoma wasn’t much better with a 5-13 record. The next loss for Texas A&M will mean the end of their run in the Big 12 as the Aggies will move to the SEC next year along with Missouri. The winner of this game will face a daunting task as they get #1 seed Kansas.

Texas A&M has lost 9 of the last 10 games including at Oklahoma 65-62 Saturday to close out the regular season. The only win in that stretch for the Aggies was at last place Texas Tech on Valentine’s Day. Oklahoma has gone 2-8 in their last 10 games. Oklahoma leads the series 29-9 against Texas A&M but the Aggies had won 5 straight games against Oklahoma before Saturday. The Aggies won in College Station 81-75 in overtime in late January.

Texas A&M is coached by Billy Kennedy. The Aggies have wins over St. John’s, Texas Tech twice, and Oklahoma St. Texas A&M has losses to Mississippi St, Florida, and Rice. The Aggies split with Oklahoma and Oklahoma St, but were swept by every other team in the Big 12 except Texas Tech.

Oklahoma is coached by Lon Kruger. The Sooners have wins over Washington St, Santa Clara, Oral Roberts, Arkansas, Houston, Kansas St twice, Texas Tech, and Oklahoma St. Oklahoma has losses to Saint Louis and Cincinnati. The Sooners swept Kansas St, split with Oklahoma St, Texas A&M, and Texas Tech, and were swept by Kansas, Missouri, Texas, Baylor, and Iowa St.

Texas A&M is being outscored 61.1-60.9 this season. The Aggies are shooting 43.5% from the field, and 33.3% from 3 point range. TAMU makes 64.5% of their free throws. The Aggies average 34 rebounds a game and has a rebounding margin of +1.5. Texas A&M averages 11.9 assists, 13.6 turnovers, 5.7 steals, and 2.3 blocks a game. Aggie opponents are shooting 40.4% from the field and 30.7% from 3 point range. The Aggies are ranked in the top 40 nationally in scoring defense, opponent’s field goal percentage, and opponent’s 3 point percentage. A&M forces 12.2 turn0vers a game.

Texas A&M guard Elston Turner averages 13.8 points, 3.7 rebounds, 2.3 assists, and 1 steal a game. He makes 39.8% of his three point shots. Khris Middleton averages 12.4 points, 5 rebounds, and 2.1 assists a game.  David Loubeau averages 10.8 points, and 4.5 rebounds a game. Ray Turner averages 9.2 points, and 5.5 rebound a game to lead the team.  Dash Harris averages 4.3 assists to lead the team and 1.5 steals a game to lead the team. Keith Davis averages 0.6 blocks a game to lead the team. Forward Kourtney Roberson is day to day with an ankle injury.

Oklahoma is outscoring opponents 70-69 this season. The Sooners are shooting 43.6% from the field, including 35.6% from 3 point range. Oklahoma makes 72.9% of their free throws. Oklahoma averages 37.2 rebounds a game, and have a rebounding margin of +3.7. Oklahoma averages 14.1 assists, 12.8 turnovers, 3.1 blocks, and 6.2 steals a game. Sooner opponents are shooting 43.1% from the field including 34.1% from 3 point range. Oklahoma forces 13.7 turnovers a game.

Oklahoma guard Steven Pledger averages 16.6 points, 4 rebounds, 1.6 assists, and 1 steals a game. Pledger leads the Sooners in scoring, and is shooting 42.6% from 3 point range. Calvin Newell Jr. was the second leading scorer but left the program in early December. Romero Osby averages 12.7 points, 7.4 rebounds to lead the team, and 1 block a game to also lead the team. Andrew Fitzgerald averages 12.2 points, and 5.1 rebounds a game.  Cameron Clark averages 8.6 points, 4.6 rebounds, and 1.2 assists a game. Sam Grooms averages 6 assists to lead the team. Carl Blair leads the Sooners in steals with 1.1 a game.

Oklahoma is 11-15 ATS and the total is 12-14 this season. Texas A&M is 13-11 ATS and the total is 9-14-1 this season. Texas A&M has covered the last 5 against Oklahoma, and the under is 8-3 in the last 11. The Aggies are 20-8 ATS in Wednesday games, 41-17 after a straight-up loss, 9-4 overall, and in Big 12 games, and 0-5 in neutral site games. The Sooners are 6-13 ATS in Big 12 games, 1-4 after a straight up win, and against teams with losing records.

These two teams have struggled under first year coaches. Both Kruger and Kennedy have had success at other programs, so eventually Oklahoma and Texas A&M will be good again. Unfortunately this year, not so much. Let’s be honest here, the winner of this game will not advance past Kansas in the quarters, unless something drastic happens. I like Texas A&M to win a close game because of their defense.

Our college basketball handicappers are red hot as Championship week is in full swing. Don’t miss out on any more winners from now until the national championship game in New Orleans next month.

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