We went 3-1-1 for our first Saturday of picks. Hoping to continue the trend this week!
#19 Baylor @ #15 West Virginia
West Virginia is coming off a horrendous 19 point loss to Oklahoma, while Baylor is playing their best basketball of the season having won 4 of 5, including 3 by 20+ points. Granted, the Mountaineers are a different team at home, and Baylor’s recent success has mostly been in Waco. But, Baylor has the ball handling and versatility to break the WVU press, and force the Mountaineers into their half-court defense, which ranks #335 in the country. Offensively, WVU is completely hit or miss, with often times more misses. WVU’s best chance is to wear down Baylor’s short rotation. But, I’ll roll w the dogs…
The Pick: Baylor +4
#11 Iowa State vs. Texas Tech
Last time these two teams met it was a shocking 78-73 Red Raiders win in Lubbock. The Cyclones need a win to have any chance of staying in the hunt with Kansas for the Big 12 title. The Cyclones are a different team inside Hilton Coliseum, where they haven’t lost in over a year. The Red Raiders won’t have much depth either, with bench players Stan Mayes out for a third straight game due to violating team rules, and Justin Jamison was dismissed from the team Wednesday for violating team rules. Look for the Cyclones in a romp.
The Pick: Iowa State -16
#8 Kansas @ Oklahoma State
The job Bill Self has done with this team continues to amaze me. Plenty of youth and no superstar, but once again, rolling to a Big 12 Championship, holding a 2-game lead at the halfway mark. The Jayhawks are in Stillwater to face the Cowboys who are coming off their biggest win this season, beating Texas in OT on Wednesday. KU has been off since a win over Iowa State on Big Monday. In their last meeting on January 13th, Kansas won by ten in Lawrence. Since then, Oklahoma State has struggled, while Kansas has started to find their groove.
The Pick: Kansas -1.5
#21 Oklahoma @ TCU
The Sooners are looking to match a season high with their 4th straight win, while TCU hopes to snap a season high 5 game slide. OU is playing their best ball of the season, outscoring opponents by over 20 points per game and allowing just 31% shooting. But, OU could be prone to falling for trap games this season (see, K-State, 1/10). Lon Kruger has hyped this up as a potential trap game, and the last time he did that was prior to a 34-point win over Weber State on December 22nd. The Sooners players are all saying the right thing about maturity, needing to win these games, etc.
The Pick: OU -4.5
#25 Texas @ Kansas State
Game is not on the board yet… will tweet it out on @Heartland_CS when it shows up.