Houston vs SMU Odds & Prediction: Betting Value on Over/Under

Houston vs SMU Odds & Prediction: Betting Value on Over/Under article feature image
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Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images. Pictured: Tramon Mark (Houston)

Houston vs SMU Odds

Thursday, Feb. 16
7 p.m. ET
ESPN2
Houston Odds
SpreadTotalMoneyline
-16
-110
138.5
-110o / -110u
-1600
SMU Odds
SpreadTotalMoneyline
+16
-110
138.5
-110o / -110u
+900
Odds via Caesars. Get up-to-the-minute college basketball odds here.

Aside from an early-season loss to Alabama and an out-of-character loss to Temple at home in January, the Houston Cougars have been the most dominant team in the country.

They will now travel to Abilene, Texas to take on the SMU Mustangs.

SMU has had a down year. The Mustangs rank 233rd in Adjusted Offensive Efficiency and 133rd in Adjusted Defensive Efficiency, per KenPom.

Pair their eFG% of 47.4% with the fact that they're facing one of the best defenses in the nation (Houston), and it will be a tough day at the office on Thursday.

Houston’s defense is lethal, and it can lock down virtually anyone. The Cougars play at such a slow pace, and they should control the tempo of this game, as well.

Look for this to be a defensive-minded game and for the under to hit.


Houston Cougars

The Cougars rank 348th in Adjusted Tempo, per KenPom. They average 18.9 seconds per possession on offense and 18.4 seconds per possession on defense.

They control every game and have really only been challenged by teams that can win or equal them in the rebounding game.

SMU ranks 245th in rebounding percentage compared to Houston’s rank of second, per ShotQuality. Houston will likely produce some second chances on offense while limiting the Mustangs to one shot per trip down the floor.

Houston also can defend both inside and out. It ranks third in 3-point percentage on defense (26.5%) and fourth in opponent 2-point percentage (42.6%).

Per ShotQuality, the Cougars are only allowing a 19% Open 3 Rate and rank 22nd in Rim & 3 ShotQuality PPP. This furthers the point that they will hold SMU in check on the interior and on the perimeter.

Photo by CBB Analytics

One issue the Cougars have had is allowing 1.03 PPP from catch-and-shoot 3s. Well, SMU ranks 232nd in this area, so it should not be of much concern for Kelvin Sampson and Co.

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Southern Methodist Mustangs

Honestly, the only area the Mustangs may consistently find points is at the free-throw line.

Because Houston’s defense is so tenacious, it tends to foul more than most teams do. The Cougars rank 214th in free-throw attempt percentage and 330th on offense in this metric.

SMU ranks 155th on offense and 191st on defense, so it has a clear edge in this area.

That being said, other than being at home, do not expect Houston to foul much if SMU takes poor shots, which it has done all season.

The Mustangs rank 217th in shot selection at only 40%, per ShotQuality, and they rank 323rd in shot-making.

Meanwhile, Houston ranks 72nd in shot selection on defense.

Photo by CBB Analytics

Another area of concern for the Mustangs is turnover percentage. They rank 132nd on offense at 17.9% and 149th on defense at 18.7%.

Houston is turning over opponents 22.5% of the time (25th) while only turning the ball over 15% of the time itself.

That being said, Houston likes to control the pace of the game, so expect SMU to cough the ball up while the Cougars walk it down the floor.


Houston vs SMU Betting Pick

SMU is just a shaky offensive team going up against the best of the best in college basketball, so it's tough to see how it scores against the Cougars.

The last time these two played, the final total was 140 points, with Houston winning 87-53.

Unless Houston riddles off points left and right again, it should keep SMU from scoring too many consecutive buckets.

Take the under in this game from 137.5 (-110) to 136 (-110).

Houston is a fantastic defensive team, so SMU could score even fewer points this go-around.

Pick: Under 137.5 (Play to 136)

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