#17 West Virginia vs #13 Texas Tech

#17 West Virginia vs #13 Texas Tech | 2021 NCAA Basketball Expert Analysis

Written by on February 8, 2021

It seems there’s a ranked matchup every night in the ultra-deep Big 12 Conference, and the lone such game in the league on Tuesday features No. 17 West Virginia at No. 13 Texas Tech (rankings may change Monday) as both jockey for seeding in the conference tournament. The Red Raiders will be favored on the NCAAB odds.

How to Bet West Virginia at Texas Tech NCAA Basketball Odds & TV Info

Last Meeting

On Jan. 25, West Virginia edged visiting Texas Tech 88-87 when WVU was ranked No. 11 and TTU No. 10. Miles McBride made a go-ahead jumper with 6 seconds left and finished with a season-high 24 points for the Mountaineers. McBride scored 17 points over the final nine minutes. Jalen Bridges and reserve Sean McNeil each scored 13 points for West Virginia, which trailed by 12 with about seven minutes left. Mac McClung was great in the loss with 30 points. West Virginia, the worst shooting team in the Big 12, made its last 10 field-goal attempts and shot 58% (30 for 52) for the game.

Why Bet on West Virginia? | 2021 NCAA Basketball Expert Analysis

West Virginia (13-5) beat No. 23 Kansas on Saturday, 91-79. The Mountaineers never trailed and got off to a good start in a challenging stretch where they will play six straight opponents that are currently ranked. Trailing by 10 at halftime, Kansas forced several turnovers to tie it. But Miles McBride and Taz Sherman were dominant, combining to score 33 points in the second half while shooting 10 of 15.

“We usually don’t have just guards go whip us,” Kansas coach Bill Self said. “That’s what happened tonight with those two. McBride totally dominated the game. He was a first-team all-American tonight the way he played. Made every big shot. Of course, Sherman had a big game. We knew they were keys looking back.”

McBride finished with 31 points, eight assists, seven rebounds and three steals, narrowly missing a triple-double, which Levi Phillips once accomplished against Virginia Tech in 1974. Levi is one of only four players in WVU history to do so. McBride was 9-for-9 from the free throw line and made nine of his 16 field goal attempts, including four-of-five from 3.

“(McBride is) getting healthy again,” said West Virginia coach Bob Huggins, now six victories shy of 900 for his career. “He didn’t play well for a couple of games and he’s got a bad foot and he just wasn’t able to plant. As everybody saw today, his foot is getting better. He was able to plant, which gets him up and helps get the ball up in the air and over the rim.

Sherman had 25 points on nine-of-17 shooting, while Derek Culver just missed another double-double with 19 points and nine rebounds. Overall, West Virginia was 16-of-19 from the free throw line while shooting a sizzling 11-of-21 from 3-point distance.

Kansas committed 18 turnovers, which led to 26 West Virginia points. The Mountaineers assisted on 18 of their 32 field goals, while Kansas had just 12 assists on its 29 baskets.

Why Bet on Texas Tech? | 2021 NCAA Basketball Expert Analysis

The Red Raiders (14-5) won their third game in a row Saturday, 73-62 at Kansas State. Texas Tech made its final seven field goals of the game and went 24-for-51 (51%) from the field while the Wildcats were 20-for-44 (45%). The Red Raiders played most of the game their second leading scorer, Terrence Shannon Jr., who was out with an ankle injury. He played only 11 minutes and had two points.

“He just had a sore ankle and the idea was to give him some rest,” Coach Chris Beard said. “I expect him to be back next game and hope the injury doesn’t linger.”

The Red Raiders improved to 4-1 on the road in conference play after hitting 10 3-pointers, committing only 10 turnovers and having 18 assists on 24 baskets against the Wildcats.

Mac McClung led the way with 23 points, while Kyler Edwards had 13 points and eight rebounds. McClung went over 20 points for the ninth time this season after going 8-for-17 from the field and 6-for-9 at the free-throw line. Edwards and McCullar led the Red Raiders with three 3-pointers each as the team went 10-for-20 from beyond the arc. The 10 3-pointers were the most the Red Raiders have had in conference play and were one shy of matching the season-high (Troy). McClung leads the Big 12 by scoring 19.4 points per game in conference games,

Texas Tech is the top defensive unit in the Big 12 by holding opponents to 61.7 points per game and to 40.3 percent shooting. The Red Raiders rank 14th nationally by holding teams to only 61.7 ppg. and are fifth in the nation with a 5.9 turnover margin advantage and 23rd by forcing 16.9 turnovers per game from their opponent.

Expert Prediction

  • Texas Tech 72, West Virginia 66

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