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Big 12 Conference Weekend Preview

Kansas Vying for Season Sweep of Baylor

Rock, Chalk …

There will be plenty of Big 12 Conference action on the ESPN channels on Saturday with four of the five scheduled games airing on ESPN, ESPN2 or ESPNU.

The big one is Big 12 leader Kansas traveling to meet defending national champion Baylor on Saturday at 8 p.m. on ESPN. A win would give the Jayhawks a 2½-game lead on Baylor in the Big 12 standings.

Big 12 Conference Weekend Preview
Ed Zurga/Getty Images/AFP

Kansas (+1400) and Baylor (+1600) continue to lead the way among the Big 12 teams in the national championship race according to the March Madness odds. Texas Tech comes in at +2500.

Kansas (-500) is starting to distance itself from Texas Tech (+600) and Baylor (+650) in the odds to win the Big 12 title.

Ochai Agbaji of Kansas has the fifth-best odds at +900 to be named the national player of the year.

Here’s a look at this weekend’s games in the Big 12 with some information for those who bet online.

Oklahoma State Cowboys vs Oklahoma Sooners

  • Date, time, TV: Saturday, Noon ET, CBS

This hasn’t been the best of years for the in-state rivals, with Oklahoma and Oklahoma State a combined 10-20 in Big 12 play.

Oklahoma (14-14, 4-11) has lost four games in a row and failed to cover in each of the last three. Three straight games involving the Sooners had gone over the total before Wednesday’s 66-42 loss to Texas Tech. It was the first time since Oklahoma’s 57-40 win over Houston Baptist on Nov. 24 that one of its games fell under 110 combined points. The Sooners will look to improve to 10-5 at home.

Oklahoma State (13-14, 6-9) has split its last six games and also gone 3-3 against the spread during that stretch. Three of the Cowboys’ last five games have been decided by four points or less, with six of the last nine finishing over the total.

Oklahoma State has won four games in a row against the rival Sooners, including a 64-55 win on Feb. 5 as a 2½-point favorite at home. Oklahoma State has covered against the Las Vegas odds in each of those victories. The Cowboys also won the last matchup played in Norman.

Each of the last three games in the series have been decided by single digits.

Oklahoma is second in the Big 12 in field goal percentage (47.6) while Oklahoma State is second in field goal percentage defense (39.6).

Texas Longhorns vs West Virginia Mountaineers

  • Date, time, TV: Saturday, 2 p.m. ET

No. 20 Texas is 17-2 against unranked teams and in order to stay in contention for a spot in the March Madness bracket, this is the type of game the Longhorns need to win.

Four of the last five Texas games went over the total. The Longhorns split their last four games and gone just 1-2-1 against the spread in those contests.

Texas (20-8, 9-6) has won its last three games decided by three points or less.

Last-place West Virginia (14-14, 3-12) has lost five games in a row, although the Mountaineers did cover in Wednesday’s 84-81 loss at Iowa State as a five-point underdog. Eleven of West Virginia’s 14 wins have come at home.

West Virginia has dropped its last six games determined by single digits while five of the Mountaineers’ last six games went over the total.

Texas has won six of the last eight games against West Virginia and covered against the spread in five of them. The Longhorns won 74-59 on Jan. 1 as a 12-point favorite at home.

Four of the last five games in the series went over the total.

There’s little middle ground in the recent matchups between the Longhorns and Mountaineers. Four of the last six games have been won by at least 10 points and the other two were two-point decisions.

Texas leads the Big 12 in turnover margin (+4.04) while West Virginia is fourth (+2.93).

Iowa State Cyclones vs Kansas State Wildcats

  • Date, time, TV: Saturday, 2 p.m. ET, ESPNU

Iowa State is back to its winning ways as the Cyclones topped West Virginia on Wednesday for its third win in a row. It is the longest streak for Iowa State (19-9, 6-9) since opening the season with 12 straight wins. Four of Iowa State’s last five games have gone over the total.

Each of the last four Kansas State games finished over the total, although the Wildcats are just 2-2 over that span.

Kansas State (14-13, 6-9) had covered in five of its last six games before Tuesday’s 21-point loss at Kansas as a 12-point underdog according to the college basketball spreads.

The Wildcats have won four consecutive games against Iowa State, including a 75-69 victory on Feb. 12 as a five-point underdog on the road. They are 3-0-1 against the spread in those games while three of those four contests went over the total.

Kansas State leads the Big 12 in 3-pointers (225) and 3-point percentage defense (29.1). Only West Virginia has sent opponents to the foul line more among Big 12 teams than Iowa State.

Texas Tech Red Raiders vs TCU Frogs

  • Date, time, TV: Saturday, 6 p.m. ET, ESPN2

Texas Tech refused to let the Big 12 race be limited to Kansas and Baylor. The Red Raiders have won four games in a row and held their opponents to 97 points over the last two games to move into a tie for second place in the Big 12. Texas Tech is only 3-5 on the road.

Texas Tech was a No. 3 seed when the NCAA selection committee recently unveiled the top 16 seeds a month away from the start of the tournament. This is the type of game the Red Raiders need to win to keep those positive March Madness predictions coming.

Ninth-ranked Texas Tech (22-6, 11-4) has covered in its last four games and in 10 of the last 11 while four of its last six games went under the total.

Texas Christian (17-9, 6-8) has dropped four of its last five games and is 2-2-1 against the spread in those contests. Eight of the Horned Frogs’ last 10 games went over the total.

Texas Tech has won the last three games against Texas Christian, including an 82-69 win on Feb. 12 as a 10½-point favorite at home. The Red Raiders are 8-1-1 against the spread in the last 10 matchups with TCU. Six of the last eight games in the series have finished under the total

Each of the last six games in the series have been decided by at least 10 points.

TCU tops the Big 12 with 13.4 offensive rebounds per game and a +9.4 mark in rebounding margin. Texas Tech is the conference leader in field goal percentage (38.2).

The Red Raiders got third-leading scorer Kevin McCullar back after missing two games.

Kansas Jayhawks vs Baylor Bears

Date, time, TV: Saturday, 8 p.m. ET, ESPN

The Big 12 has saved its best for last. The final game of the weekend is a battle of the conference titans.

Kansas and Baylor are the top scoring teams in the Big 12 and also rank first and second in assists per game.

The Jayhawks are looking for the season sweep of Baylor for the first time since the 2018-19 season after rolling to the 83-59 win over the defending national champions on Feb. 5 as a 2½-point favorite at home. Kansas improved to 5-2 in the last seven games against Baylor and covered in each of the last four matchups.

Four of the last five games between Baylor and Kansas went under the total.

Kansas (23-4, 12-2) has won the last four games and is 5-2 against the spread over its last seven to open up a 1½-game lead in the Big 12 standings.

Three of the last four Kansas wins have come by double figures, including Tuesday’s 102-83 rout of Kansas State.

Although Baylor (23-5, 11-4) has failed to cover in its last three games, the Bears have won four of the last five to remain in contention for the Big 12 regular-season title. The Bears are 13-2 at home, but Kansas has won six of its eight true road games.

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