Where to Watch: ESPN2 8:30pm CT
Money Line: Texas Tech -7.5 O/U 125
Following a dominant performance against the Iowa State Cyclones last night that resulted in a 72-41 victory, Texas Tech will face off against Oklahoma in the semifinals of the Big 12 Tournament. The Sooners upset Baylor in the quarterfinals and have put themselves firmly into the bubble conversation. As of right now I currently see them as a First Four Out team, but they have potential to punch their ticket with a victory tonight and they possibly have already done that with the Baylor win.
The previous two matchups were two completely opposite games. The first matchup in Oklahoma saw the Sooners take over in the second half after being down 25-20 going into halftime. Umoja Gibson had 30 points and was unstoppable from the three point line as they ended up beating Tech by 15 and outscoring them 45-25 in the second half.
Their next matchup in Lubbock went the Red Raiders way as Texas Tech won 66-42 and took Gibson out of the game entirely. Tech can use this performance and build off of it to hopefully shut the Sooners offense down for a second time around.
In order to do just that, Gibson can’t get going again. Yesterday the Sooners had four guys in double digits, and he was one of them with 14 points. Jacob Groves stepped up with 15 points to lead the Sooners as they found a way to beat that Baylor defense that’s always a pain to play against. Groves and Gibson each took five threes and are probably looking to do that again because in the first matchup against Tech Oklahoma shot very well from behind the arc.
For Tech, I just want to see our guys carry the momentum from yesterday offensively. Terrence Shannon Jr. stepped up in a big way, and Kevin Obanor also put up 10 points without making a three. He only attempted two and on multiple occasions he faked the shot and drove inside for a better look because teams know that he likes to pull that trigger from deep.
I predict this game ending with a 76-67 win for Texas Tech. Oklahoma will be coming in with some swagger after beating Baylor so they will be a tough out, but Tech will be dominant on the offense end of the ball and end up being too much for the Sooners to handle.