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Kansas vs Texas Tech Odds, Picks: Red Raiders to Make Statement

Kansas vs Texas Tech Odds, Picks: Red Raiders to Make Statement article feature image

Photo by John E. Moore III/Getty Images. Pictured: Mark Adams (Texas Tech)

Kansas vs Texas Tech Odds

Tuesday, Jan. 3
9 p.m. ET
Kansas Odds
-106o / -114u
Texas Tech Odds
-106o / -114u
Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute college basketball odds here.

After a late collapse to begin Big 12 play, Texas Tech returns to Lubbock looking to bounce back against No. 4 Kansas.

The Jayhawks won their conference opener with a second-half comeback, erasing a 15-point halftime deficit to take down Oklahoma State. They are now 12-1 and have become the clear favorites (+135) to win the Big 12.

Can Texas Tech make a statement and pick up a huge win at home against a conference brute, or will Kansas continue to roll in its first conference road game of the year?

Kansas Jayhawks

The defending national champs have somehow exceeded expectations in non-conference play. Despite losing four starters from a season ago, the Jayhawks went 11-1, with a 7-1 record in Quadrant I and II games.

They were nearly caught sleeping in their Big 12 home opener against Oklahoma State, staving off the upset-hungry Cowboys, 69-67. Now, they hit the road to Lubbock in what sets up to be a raucous environment.

Kansas' biggest knock in the early going is its lack of experience and depth. The Jayhawks have had just one true road game — Missouri — and are 243rd in Division I experience. They're also 324th in bench minutes.

But the starters have been extremely efficient and productive.

Jalen Wilson has finally taken the expected sophomore year leap — it just so happened to come a season late — and has been the star of the Jayhawks.

Wilson averages 21 points, 8.6 rebounds and 2.8 assists per game and takes 33.8% of all shots when on the floor. But his presence also allows for the Kansas' shooters to find open space and allows for more efficient looks.

That's led to freshman Gradey Dick's blistering 48.6% clip from 3 and has contributed to Kansas' 36th-ranked eFG%. This is a physical Jayhawks squad that rebounds extremely well and takes care of the basketball.

They're unselfish — 22nd in assists per field goal made — and primarily find success on the inside. Aside from Dick, there aren't many effective 3-point shooters for this offense.

As for its defense, Kansas ranks 10th in adjusted efficiency and is inside the top 50 in eFG%, turnover rate and 2-point defense. Size could be an issue against more physical teams, as the Jayhawks have no player taller than 6-foot-8 in their starting lineup.

They do have Zuby Ejiofor (6-foot-9), Zach Clemence (6-foot-10) and Ernest Udeh Jr. (6-foot-11) on the bench, but none of them play more than 7.1 minutes per game.

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Texas Tech Red Raiders

One of the biggest knocks on Texas Tech has been its lack of difficulty in non-conference play. The Red Raiders faced just two teams ranked inside the KenPom top 150, losing both.

Then came the Big 12 season opener at TCU. And for 75% of the game, the Red Raiders were in control. They looked poised to pull of the upset and had no difficulties on the offensive end against a dominant Horned Frogs defense.

In the final 10 minutes, though, TTU was outscored 23-8 and lost by six.

That brings us to the Red Raiders' conference home opener against Kansas. Unlike in years past, where defense was the selling point for Texas Tech, this has been an extremely efficient offense.

The Red Raiders are sixth in eFG%, 10th in 2-point offense and 54th shooting the 3 ball. Five separate players average in double figures, led by the seasoned Kevin Obanor (15.8 PPG).

Daniel Batcho has taken a huge sophomore year leap — he's 53rd in 2-point % and averages 12.2 points per game — while Pop Isaacs and Jaylon Tyson have shot lights out from 3.

Whether that continues as the difficulty in competition progresses remains to be seen. If there's one Achilles' heel with this offense, though, it's turnovers. Texas Tech is 271st in turnover rate and a late collapse against TCU was fueled by its lack of ball security.

TCU scored 22 points off the Red Raiders' 23 turnovers in what was an eventual six-point win for the Horned Frogs. 

Defensively, Mark Adams has himself yet another disruptive group. Texas Tech is inside the top 25 in turnover rate and top 65 in both 2- and 3-point defense.

The aforementioned Batcho has been surgical around the rim and ranks 47th in block rate and 53rd in defensive rebounding rate. It's only a matter of time before their paint protection takes a significant step up — when Fardaws Aimaq makes his TTU debut.

But for now, it's Batcho's rim to defend. And the rest of the Red Raiders play off his length inside.

They're extremely efficient at limiting second-chance opportunities, too.

Kansas vs. Texas Tech Betting Pick

This is the perfect buy-low spot on Texas Tech.

I was unsure of what to think about the Red Raiders due to their easy non-conference schedule, but in a true road game against TCU, they held their own until the final minutes. The offense looked solid and the perimeter defense was disruptive.

Texas Tech led for nearly the entire game, and it wasn't until the final four minutes when TCU really took control. It's an upsetting loss and one the Red Raiders will definitely carry with them as they return to Lubbock to take on Kansas.

The Jayhawks, meanwhile, gear up for their second true road game and first of Big 12 play.  The raucous environment should provide a huge boost to the Red Raiders, who have the size to neutralize Kansas inside.

The Jayhawks love to attack the rim — that's where they find the most success — but they'll find Batcho ready to pounce. As long as he stays out of foul trouble, the shot-blocking Batcho should prove to be an issue all night.

Texas Tech's offense should have no issue keeping up with Kansas. The Red Raiders are shooting the ball well and are attacking the rim relentlessly. They're 20th in FTA/FGA for a reason.

As long as the Red Raiders can keep turnovers at a minimum, this is the perfect spot for them to take home a much-needed win and morale booster.

Back Adams' squad in Lubbock as they make a statement against the No. 4 Jayhawks.

Pick: Texas Tech +2.5 (Play to PK)

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