With a big win over Kansas on Saturday, Baylor boosted its chances of a Big 12 regular season title and a #1 seed in the NCAA Tournament. But there’s no time to be complacent, as they face a quick turnaround and a tough trip to Texas tonight.
After being blown out in Lawrence three weeks ago, the Bears gained a measure of revenge on the Jayhawks in Waco, pulling away late for an 80-70 win. With the win, Baylor is now just a half-game behind Kansas in the Big 12 standings with tonight’s game and a home game against Iowa State remaining.
For Texas, a strong finish could help Chris Beard’s team lock down a top-four seed in the NCAA Tournament.
Which team will pick up a valuable win tonight in Austin? Let’s take a look at the odds and the matchup.
Baylor vs. Texas College Basketball Matchup Info and Betting Odds
- Game Matchup: #3 AP/#4 CP Baylor Bears (24-5, 12-4 Big 12, 2nd in the Big 12) vs. #21 Texas Longhorns (21-8, 10-6 Big 12, 4th in the Big 12)
- Venue & Location: Frank Erwin Center (Austin, Texas)
- Date: Monday, February 28, 2022
- Time: 9:00 p.m. ET
- TV: ESPN
- Spread: Baylor -1.5 (-110), Texas +1.5 (-110)
- Total: OVER 134.5 (-110), UNDER 134.5 (-110)
- Moneyline: Baylor -125, Texas +105
Odds are via BetMGM.
Which Version of Texas Will We See Tonight?
With the hiring of Beard and a major talent injection, there was a lot of hype about what Texas could be this season.
There have certainly been high points, like wins over Tennessee and Kansas. And there are only nine other schools that rank in the top 30 in both offensive efficiency and defensive efficiency: Gonzaga, Kentucky, Baylor, Arizona, Duke, Houston, Auburn, UCLA, and Villanova.
But it is clear that the Longhorns aren’t in the same category as Kansas and Baylor just yet in the Big 12 hierarchy. And instead of dropping off after Beard’s departure to Austin, Texas Tech sits a place above Texas in the conference standings and swept the Longhorns home and away.
The metrics are certainly nice on the surface, but the preseason hype has not been met. As it stands, Texas appears to be destined for a #5 or #6 seed in the NCAA Tournament.
2021-22 Efficiency Rankings for Texas
- Offensive Efficiency: 27th
- Defensive Efficiency: 17th
So, which Texas will we see against Baylor? Will we see the team that has given up under 60 points six times in Big 12 play, held Tennessee under 40 points for 36 minutes, withstood Kansas shooting almost 60 percent from the field, and produced its best offensive performance in Big 12 play in Saturday’s win at West Virginia?
Or will we see the team that nearly threw away those wins over Tennessee and West Virginia, has scored 65 or fewer points seven times in Big 12 play, and has had trouble stringing multiple solid performances together?
As renowned as Baylor are for their defensive prowess, they also average 77.2 points per game, which ranks 46th in the country. The Bears have scored 70+ points in 11 of their 16 Big 12 games this season, and in their first meeting against the Longhorns, scored 80 points even with Jonathan Tchamwa Tchatchoua going down with a season-ending injury early.
To win tonight, Texas will have to bring their defensive best or buck a season-long trend. The Longhorns, who have scored 75 and 82 points in their past two games, have had only one previous stretch this season in which they scored 70+ points in three straight games.
Also, Saturday’s win in Morgantown was just the fourth time this season that Texas hit the 80-point mark. Each of the previous three times, they lost the following game. Notably, each time has seen the Longhorns put 80+ on a weaker opponent then falter against a much stronger one.
Texas After Scoring 80+ Points This Season
- beat Houston Baptist 92-48, lost 86-74 at Gonzaga
- beat UTRGV 88-58, lost 64-60 at Seton Hall
- won 80-78 at Oklahoma, lost 61-55 vs. Texas Tech
- won 82-81 at West Virginia, TBD vs. Baylor
Baylor vs. Texas Prediction and Picks
Texas 74, Baylor 71 (Texas +1.5 & OVER 134.5)
I’m certainly not a believer in Texas when it comes to making a deep run in the NCAA Tournament. I look for Beard to do that eventually, but this year is likely to not be it based on their results.
That said, Senior Night often brings out the most inspired of performances. And I look for the Longhorns to step up tonight in their final home game of the season and all but hand Kansas the Big 12 regular season title ahead of this weekend’s trip to Allen Fieldhouse.
The post Baylor vs. Texas Basketball 2/28/22 Prediction & Odds first appeared on Betting News.