Preview | Baylor Bears vs. Texas Tech Red Raiders

USA TODAY Sports

Texas Tech will host perennial Big 12 power, Baylor, in Texas Tech's first Big 12 Conference home game of the year. Both Baylor and Texas Tech won their first conference game of the year, Baylor beating Texas and Texas Tech beating TCU.

GAME INFORMATION

vs

Baylor Bears (9-4, 1-0)


Texas Tech Red Raiders (8-4, 1-0)

January 8, 2013 @ 6:00 pm

United Spirit Arena | Lubbock, TX

TV: ESPN2 | Radio: Affiliates | GameCast: FoxSports

Probable Starters

Pierre Jackson (5-10/180)

PG

Josh Gray (6-1/175)

A.J. Walton (6-1/184)

SG

Dusty Hannahs (6-4/210)

Brady Heslip (6-2/180)

TG

Trency Jackson (6-2/185)

Cory Jefferson (6-9/210)

PF

Jordan Tolbert (6-7/225)

Isaiah Austin (7-1/220)

C

Dejan Kravic (6-11/240)

SCOUTING THE BEARS

I don't have current numbers (they don't include the UT win), but Baylor has been one of the top scoring teams with the 35th best scoring offense, but defensively, they have been relatively poor, only ranking 199th in the nation. Those numbers somewhat hold up, as they are 194th in defensive field goal percentage (Texas Tech is worse in both categories). As we have seen with Kansas year after year, it is defense that wins Big 12 titles, not scoring offenses. It will be interesting to watch this as the year progresses with Baylor.

Pierre Jackson is fantastic and an All-American, averaging 20 PPG, 6 APG and only 3 TPG. Just a fantastic floor leader and can dominate games. I'm a bit surprised that some of the other pargs aren't helping out more, including Heslip as I sorta thought he might have an increased role with some of their players leaving via the NBA draft last year. But Baylor has replaced Perry Jones III, Quincy Acy and Quincy Miller with Isaiah Austin and Cory Jefferson, who are both averaging 14 PPG and 8 RPG. That's obviously a load for just about any team in the big 12.

KEYS TO SUCCESS

Baylor is obviously going to test Texas Tech's relatively thin frontcourt and teams like Baylor, Kansas, Kansas St. and Texas are going to be able to do that this year. This is where having players like Aaron Ross available would be incredibly significant. Kravic is really going to have to step up his game. I mentioned after the last game how Kravic wasn't putting a body on the TCU players and he will have to do that against Baylor. Texas Tech just cannot afford to give one of the better offenses second and third opportunities.

Walker has done a pretty darned good job of exploiting the match-up problem that is Jaye Crockett for most of the year. It seems like most Big 12 teams that I've watched this year don't a tweener forward that can do some things inside and outside like Crockett. Crockett is probably a bit too quick for Jefferson and definitely Austin. it's going to be really interesting to see how and who Crockett will match-up against.

Gray and Daylen Robinson are going to have their hands full covering Jackson and it should be really interesting to see how Gray plays against Jackson. Gray is averaging 2.36 steals a game to Jackson's 2.17. Gray has a long ways to go to be the scorer that Jackson is, but Gray seems to be headed in the right direction.

GAME DAY LINKS

Texas Tech Host Baylor In Big 12 Home Opener - Texas Tech Red Raiders Official Athletic Site

Preseason player of the year offers stiff challenge for Tech | Red Raiders

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