College Basketball Picks: Kansas Jayhawks vs. Baylor Bears

No. 10 Kansas Jayhawks at No. 6 Baylor Bears
Wednesday, 2/8/12, 7:00 PM EST, TV:  ESPN2
Opening Point Spread:  Baylor -1.5
Current Betting Line:  Baylor -1.5
Opening Total:  143
Current Total:  144
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker

The Kansas Jayhawks dominated the Baylor Bears in their first meeting this year

Kansas will face a higher-ranked opponent on the road for the second time in as many games, coming off a 74-71 loss to the Missouri Tigers as three-point underdogs.  The Jayhawks are 3-3 against ranked foes this season and 38-21 versus such opponents in the Bill Self era.  The team is averaging 75.4 points per game and allowing 61.3, which comes out to a solid 14.1-point scoring margin.  Kansas is 0-2 ATS as an underdog this year, while the “under” is 6-0 in the program’s games on the road.

The Jayhawks are certainly led by national player of the year candidate Thomas Robinson, who is the only player in the Big 12 Conference to average a double-double with 18.0 points and 12.0 rebounds.  Kansas leads the series with Baylor, 17-12, including a 7-1 mark inside the Ferrell Center.  The team leads the Big 12 in allowing opponents to shoot just 38.3 percent from the floor, which also ranks in the top 10 nationally.  Robinson has played a major part in the squad either tying or outrebounding its opponent in 19 of 23 games.

Baylor has won four consecutive games since losing back-to-back contests to Kansas and Missouri, including a 64-60 win over the Oklahoma State Cowboys as 6.5-point road favorites.  The Bears have failed to cover the spread in five of six games, while going “under” the total in two straight games.  “We learned how good of a team Kansas really is,” commented Bears forward Quincy Miller.  He’s alluding to the team’s 92-74 defeat in Lawrence in the first meeting this year.  Baylor is 4-7 ATS as a favorite.

The Bears are led offensively by sophomore forward Perry Jones III, averaging a team-high 14.8 points and 7.9 rebounds, but has upped his production of late in scoring 19 points a contest over the last four games.  Baylor will certainly try and get a jump on its opponent Wednesday night, trailing at the half in only four games this season.  Since the start of the 2007-08 season, the program is 67-14 inside the Ferrell Center, including a 41-5 mark in the last three seasons.

Bettors will likely back the Jayhawks due to their 10-2-1 ATS mark following a straight-up loss, while the Bears are 7-19 ATS versus conference opponents.

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