College Basketball Odds & Pick for Mississippi State vs. Texas Tech: Value on Bulldogs
James Gilbert/Getty Images. Pictured: Garrison Brooks.
- Texas Tech hosts Mississippi State in the Big 12/SEC Challenge.
- The Red Raiders will look to lockdown the Bulldogs with their elite defense.
- Mike McNamara breaks down the game and offers up his best bet.
Mississippi State vs. Texas Tech Odds
|Mississippi State Odds|
-115o / -105u
|Texas Tech Odds|
-115o / -105u
Another intriguing matchup in the Big 12/SEC Challenge takes place in Lubbock on Saturday evening. Both of these teams are inside the top 40 in the country by most metrics, and both have their sights set on the NCAA Tournament.
Texas Tech is one of the better stories of the college basketball season to this point. Many assumed this program would struggle following the departure of Chris Beard to Texas. That has been anything but the case with Mark Adams at the helm. Tech enters this game 15-5 overall and 5-3 in the Big 12.
Mississippi State has gotten off to a good but not great start in SEC play. The Bulldogs could’ve easily won road games at Florida and Kentucky, but ultimately came up short in both.
Ben Howland’s team has been handling business at home, but adding a road win over Texas Tech would be a huge addition to its resume.
Can the Bulldogs be competitive once again on the road in another tough environment? Let’s find out.
I’m pretty high on this Bulldog team and believe it’s significantly better than the record shows. Mississippi State currently checks in at 287th in the country in KenPom’s luck rating, which highlights the fact that it has been on the wrong side of some tight games.
One reason I like Howland’s group is because of the offensive firepower on the roster. Iverson Molinar is one of the more versatile guards in the SEC and someone who can create his shot at any point.
UNC transfer Garrison Brooks gives the Bulldogs a steady veteran presence in the interior, and the redshirt senior has been really efficient in recent games.
When the Bulldogs take on Texas Tech’s swarming defense on Saturday night, they will need to continue to take care of the basketball. Do that, and they have the playmakers required to at least get some quality looks on the offensive end.
On the other side of the ball, keeping the Red Raiders off the offensive glass will be pivotal. Miss State has done a good job of limiting teams to one shot a trip throughout the year, but this will be a stiffer test due to Tech’s athleticism.
The Bulldogs played a relatively weak non-con schedule overall, so this is a huge opportunity to add some juice to their resume by snagging a road win over a top-15 team.
You’d be hard-pressed to find a tougher team in the country than this Red Raider outfit. Adams has done an unbelievable job of maintaining the culture that Beard built in Lubbock.
Per usual, the strength of this Texas Tech team is on the defensive end. Tech currently sits fourth in the nation in adjusted defensive efficiency, and that is in large part due to the “no-middle” concept that Adams deploys.
The Red Raiders already own wins over Tennessee, Baylor, and Kansas among others, with zero bad losses on the resume. This team has a legitimate opportunity to play its way up to a top-four seed in the NCAA Tournament with a strong finish to the Big 12 season.
If there was one concern or flaw with Adams’ team it would be whether or not it has enough scorers to win in big games come March. Tech does not shoot it particularly well from three point range, and there’s not really a solidified go-to scorer to throw it to with the game on the line.
That said, guys like Kevin McCullar, Davion Warren, and Kevin Obanor have all done a good job of playing their role within the offense. With the defense they possess, the Red Raiders may not need to be elite offensively to make a deep run in March.
Mississippi State vs. Texas Tech Betting Pick
When breaking down this game from a gambling perspective, I really like the situational spot this is for Mississippi State. Texas Tech is coming off an emotional double overtime loss to Kansas, a game in which the Red Raiders were extremely close to picking up a rare road win at the Phog.
In addition to that, Tech has the Texas game looming on Tuesday night. I know Adams will be preaching to his team to focus on the task at hand, but the Beard return game has literally been circled on the calendar for months by the Lubbock faithful.
Mississippi State may not have a road win on its resume to this point, but the Bulldogs have been competitive in all three true road games they’ve been in this year.
Moreover, the Bulldogs have the more potent offense in this matchup, and neither team plays particularly fast. It’s hard to envision Tech running away with this one.
With the current spread sitting at TTU by 7.5, I think there is legitimate value on the Bulldogs here.
Expect Howland’s team to hang around, and I would not be surprised if it has a chance to win the game outright in the final minutes. Give me State and the points.
Pick: Mississippi State +7.5
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