There’s very little separating the Texas Longhorns (16-15) and the Kansas Jayhawks (23-8) according to online sportsbooks. The spread for today’s quarterfinal Big 12 tournament game (9:00 pm at Sprint Center) opened at Jayhawks -3 with a total of 138 O/U. The winner will move onto the semifinals, likely facing no. 2 seed Texas Tech on Friday (Mar. 15).
This season, the Longhorns are scoring 71 PPG, 219th in the country, while shooting 41-percent from the field and 34-percent from beyond the arc (223rd). Unfortunately, the offense, which ranks 106th in offensive efficiency, has been the bright spot.
On defense, the issues are more dire. Texas is surrendering 67 PPG, which puts them 59th in the country, and is an off-putting 134th in defensive rating. The easiest way for Texas to improve its performance is to grind a little harder on D.
Offensively, they are led by Kerwin Roach II, who’s pouring in a team-best 14 points per game. This game will mark Roach’s return from suspension, and it can’t come soon enough. The Longhorns are just 1-4 straight-up in his absence.
On the boards, Dylan Osetkowski has led the way for Texas with 7 rebounds per game. But as a team, the Longhorns struggle on the boards, pulling down 32 rebounds a night, 233rd overall. They routinely give up too many second chances.
Texas is coming off a 69-56 loss at the hands of Texas Christian. Jaxson Hayes had a team-leading 19 points, but it wasn’t nearly enough to keep pace with the Horned Frogs.
The Longhorns will be facing a solid offense today in the form of Kansas. The Jayhawks are 131st in offensive rating and are averaging 76 points a night (102nd).
The Jayhawks pair their respectable offense with a passable defense. They are currently sitting 78th in defensive rating and surrender 70 points per game (145th). Basically, they’re good at both ends, but not great at either.
Dedric Lawson has led the charge on offense, pouring in 19 points per game. He’s also the team’s leader on the boards, pulling down 11 rebounds per game.
Collectively, Kansas is better than Texas on the boards and above average nationally, averaging 35 RPG, which ranks 51st overall.
The Jayhawks came out on top in their last game, beating Baylor 78-70 to secure the no. 3 seed in the Big 12 tournament. Lawson led the team in scoring, as usual, with 23 points in the win.
The Longhorns finished 6th in the conference after getting edged by Texas Christian.
It’s been hard trusting either team, from a betting perspective, this season. Kansas is 14-17-0 ATS, while Texas is 15-16-0 ATS, itself. Neither one is living up to expectations this season. Texas’s play on the road has been an issue. The Longhorns are just 2-8 SU away from home for the year.
The Jayhawks, meanwhile, have a solid 16-0 SU record at home, and while they won’t technically be at home for this game, it is in Kansas City, Missouri, which means the gym will be packed with Jayhawk faithful.
Find the latest odds, spread, and over/under prediction for Texas vs Kansas in the tables, above, and good luck with your wagers.