TCU vs #15 Texas Tech

TCU vs #15 Texas Tech | 2021 NCAA Basketball Expert Analysis

Written by on February 16, 2021

In a very unusual scenario, TCU and No. 15 Texas Tech will play each other twice over the next couple days, starting with Tuesday’s matchup at TTU, which will be a solid favorite on the NCAAB odds. The original schedule for this week was forced to adjust due to winter weather that has affected travel throughout the state and region. Texas Tech and TCU had their first matchup on Jan. 20 postponed due to Covid-19 protocol.

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

Last Meeting

These teams split last season, each winning at home. The one in Lubbock was an 88-42 rout for Texas Tech. It was TTU’s largest margin of victory ever in a Big 12 game. TCU had six turnovers, three by standout guard Desmond Bane (now in the NBA), in the first 3:10 of the game. Those miscues led to 10 Texas Tech points, and the Frogs were already down 11-2 by then. They had a stretch in the second half when they went more than 10 minutes without making a field goal. Texas Tech scored 33 points off 20 TCU turnovers. The Red Raiders, who had only six turnovers in the game, shot 60.4% (32 of 53) overall from the field and 59.1% (13 of 22) on 3s.

Why Bet on TCU? | 2021 NCAA Basketball Expert Analysis

The Frogs have some work to do to earn an NCAA Tournament berth at 11-8 overall and 4-6 in the Big 12 after losing 70-55 at then-No. 13 Texas on Saturday.

The Longhorns and Horned Frogs went back-and-forth for most of the first half, but a late 12-3 Texas run spanning four and a half minutes propelled it to a 37-29 halftime advantage. TCU primarily kept pace in the half courtesy of 5-of-12 shooting from three.

Texas tightened up on defense in the second half holding TCU to a pair of long scoring droughts, each totaling over four minutes in length. TCU was held to 19-of-52 (36.5 percent) from the floor and 7-of-21 (33.3 percent) from beyond the arc.

The Horned Frogs couldn’t create any inside presence to open up more outside shooting for RJ Nembhard and Mike Miles once Texas turned up the defensive pressure on the guards. Center Kevin Samuel, who averages 9.4 points, managed just one shot in the first half and that didn’t come until the final two minutes of the half. Samuel finished with three points.

The Frogs started with a lineup of Mike Miles, PJ Fuller, Chuck O’Bannon, Samuel and RJ Nembhard for the second time this season. Nembhard scored 15 points, it was the 16th consecutive game where he put up double-digits. Nembhard did not have an assist in the game. It was the first time this season without recording one. Nembhard was 3-of-6 from 3-point range. It was his 15th consecutive game with a made 3-pointer. After missing the previous game, Miles registered 10 points and has scored 10 or more points in 14 games this season.

All but one of TCU’s losses this season have come against teams with a NET ranking of 22 or better. Under Jamie Dixon, TCU is 33-49 in Big 12 play. Prior to Dixon, TCU was 8-64 in the Big 12 over four years. TCU is 2-3 in Big 12 road games this season with wins at Kansas State and Oklahoma State.

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

No. 15 Texas Tech (14-6) had a three-game winning streak snapped last time out, 82-71 at home vs then-No. 14 West Virginia on Feb. 9.  West Virginia took its biggest lead at nine early in the second half on a 3-pointer from McNeil, but Texas Tech scored six quick points to get within two and keep the game close before the Mountaineers pulled away late.

“I thought it was a classic example of the team that made the more mistakes lost the game,” Texas Tech coach Chris Beard said. “That was us. Untimely, costly mistakes throughout the game.”

McClung leads the Red Raiders at 17.2 points per game this season, including having nine games with 20 or more points. He leads the Big 12 at 19.5 points per game in conference play. McClung has led the Red Raiders in scoring in 11 of 20 games this season and has scored in double figures in 16 games. He has made 36 3-pointers which is second on the team after going 3-for-5 on 3-pointers against the Mountaineers last Tuesday. He’s also 87-for-107 at the free-throw line (81.3 percent) and is shooting 43.3 percent from the field.

Texas Tech has slid back to No. 15 in the Associated Press Top 25, No. 11 in the USA Today Coaches Poll and is currently at No. 14 in the NCAA NET Rankings going into a stretch of four games in seven days.

Statistically, Tech ranks fourth in the nation with a 5.8 turnover margin advantage this season and is fifth with 347 made free throws. Limiting opponents to only 62.7 points per game through 20 contests leads the Big 12 and is 23rd nationally while forcing 16.9 turnovers per game from opponents has them at No. 17 in the country.

Tech is 84-52 all-time against TCU, including going 6-2 under coach Chris Beard. He stresses a 10-or-less turnover game is one of the keys to victory in every game the Red Raiders play which the team has accomplished 10 times this season. The Red Raiders are currently averaging only 11.1 turnovers per game which is the second in the Big 12 and 23rd nationally. The team is averaging only 10.5 turnovers per game in Big 12 play.

Expert Prediction

  • Texas Tech 74, TCU 62

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