Big 12 Tournament 2021: Betting Tips for Quarterfinal Odds, Spreads, Over-UnderMarch 11, 2021
The Big 12 is so deep that two top-15 teams in the AP poll will face off in the quarterfinals of the men's league tournament.
The Oklahoma State Cowboys and West Virginia Mountaineers are both poised for deep runs in March, but only one will get a chance to make a run at conference glory.
Oklahoma State comes into Kansas City as the hotter of the two teams, with four wins in its past five games, including a road win over West Virginia without star freshman Cade Cunningham in the lineup. With Cunningham back on the floor Thursday, the Cowboys have a chance to earn a semifinal showdown with the Baylor Bears.
Two of the other three quarterfinal games feature a pair of Top 25 team as well, with the nightcap between the Texas Tech Red Raiders and Texas Longhorns looking like the better of the two matchups.
Since both the Longhorns and Red Raiders have an abundance of scorers, that contest could produce the easiest over/under hit of the four-game slate.
Big 12 Tournament Quarterfinal Schedule
No. 4 West Virginia (-3.5) vs. No. 5 Oklahoma State (Over/Under: 151) (11:30 a.m. ET, ESPN)
No. 1 Baylor (-20) vs. No. 9 Kansas State (O/U: 137) (2:30 p.m. ET, ESPN)
No. 2 Kansas (-3) vs. No. 7 Oklahoma (O/U: 138) (6:30 p.m. ET, ESPN2)
No. 3 Texas vs. No. 6 Texas Tech (-1.5) (O/U: 135.5) (9:30 p.m. ET, ESPN2)
Odds via DraftKings Sportsbook.
Oklahoma State (+3.5) vs. West Virginia
Oklahoma State is one of the hottest teams in the country with six wins in its past seven games. Saturday's victory over West Virginia was its most impressive triumph of the stretch since it won on the road without Cunningham.
Cowboys head coach Mike Boynton revealed Cunningham and Isaac Likekele will play in Kansas City, per The Oklahoman's Jacob Unruh.
Cunningham, the Big 12 Player of the Year, averages 19.7 points per game and eclipsed the 20-point mark in four of his past five appearances. The potential No. 1 overall pick in the 2021 NBA draft leads an offense that has five players who average over nine points per game.
While Cunningham will be crucial to the team's postseason success, Avery Anderson III may be the X-factor who pushes it in deep into March. Anderson produced 31 points in Saturday's win and reached double digits in four of the past five games, all of which were against Top 25 teams.
If Anderson complements Cunningham's scoring Thursday, Oklahoma State should answer whatever West Virginia's offense throws at it.
The Mountaineers have four players who average more than 10 points and 42 percent from the field, but they have shortcomings on defense. Bob Huggins' team conceded 80 or more points to its past four Top 25 opponents, and it gave up that total to seven foes in league play.
If the Mountaineers fail to contain Cunningham and Anderson, it may not matter how many points Miles McBride and Derek Culver put up.
Texas vs. Texas Tech (Over 135.5)
An over/under of 135.5 points seems low for a matchup between two teams that average more than 70 points per game.
Texas averages 74.9 points per game, and Texas Tech is at 73.3 points per contest. Both teams also shoot over 44 percent from the field.
However, the over could be more of a sweat than you think because both defenses concede under 69 points per game, and the most recent meeting between the sides featured 127 points.
That contest had two uncharacteristic shooting nights for both sides, as Texas shot 34.7 percent from the field and the rivals combined to go 11-of-37 from three-point range.
If the Longhorns shoot more like they did in the January 13 meeting, the over should be in good shape. Texas shot 42.6 percent from the field and made 13 three-point shots in a 79-77 loss.
Shaka Smart's program has four players who average more than 10 points per game, led by Andrew Jones at 14.9. All of those players shoot better than 40 percent from the field and 32 percent from three-point range.
Texas Tech's top four scorers boast comparable numbers, and it could be poised for a big offensive game if Mac McClung bursts out of his recent slump.
McClung scored 31 combined points in his past three games, with 20 of them coming against the Baylor Bears. If he rebounds from that low-scoring run and produces a third game with 15-plus points against Texas, the over should be in good shape.
Follow Joe on Twitter, @JTansey90. Statistics obtained from ESPN.com.
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