Baylor guard Jared Butler drives up court during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game against Iowa State, Saturday, Jan. 2, 2021, in Ames, Iowa. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
- #2 Baylor (16-0, 8-0 Big 12) battles #6 Texas (11-3, 5-2 Big 12) on Tuesday, Feb. 2 at 7pm ET
- In a top-10 matchup, the Bears look to stay unbeaten against the Longhorns, who have a pair of one-basket losses in their past three games
- The odds for the game, as well as matchup analysis and a pick, can be found in the article below
On Tuesday, Feb. 2, two titans of the Big 12 conference will meet for the only time this year in a matchup of top-10 programs. Buckle up folks, because you’re not going to want to miss this one (tip off at 7:00 pm ET).
The Baylor Bears carry their perfect record 100 miles south to Austin, where the battle-tested Texas Longhorns await. Texas has overcome some recent COVID-19 challenges, but they’re back to full strength in time for this one. Here’s a look at the odds:
Baylor vs Texas Odds
|Baylor||-5.5 (-114)||-260||Over 144.5 (-110)|
|Texas||+5.5 (-106)||+215||Under 144.5 (-110)|
Odds as of Feb. 1st, 2020 at FanDuel.
How They’ve Fared Recently
Recently, Baylor has fared the same as it has all season: perfectly. They’ve won all eight games in the new year, six of which have come by double digits (and four of which have come against KenPom top 40 teams).
Most notably, perhaps, was their 15-point win over #9 Oklahoma and their eight-point win over #13 Texas Tech. Both of those teams beat Texas recently by narrow margins (one point and two points, respectively).
⛹️♂️💨 Fast Break vs. Auburn
Baylor’s 7-1 record is the best by any team in the #Big12SEC Challenge 🙌
Next up ➡️ A trip to Austin on Tuesday night ‼️#SicEm 🐻 | #TimeIsNow 🏀 pic.twitter.com/qbTZY10l4Z
— Baylor Basketball (@BaylorMBB) February 1, 2021
The Bears are among NCAA Division I’s best teams in several categories, but we’ll highlight just a few: 3-pt. shooting (first), offensive rebounding rate (fourth), adjusted offensive and defensive efficiency (third for both). Truly juggernaut-type stuff.
The Longhorns’ three defeats this year — including the pair of aforementioned losses — have come by a combined seven points. They’ve missed a couple of games in the new year due to COVID-19-related postponements, and head coach Shaka Smart was among their absences during the Oklahoma loss.
It all starts with defense. 😤#HookEm pic.twitter.com/ApueJWVfgz
— Texas Men’s Basketball (@TexasMBB) January 21, 2021
But Smart told reporters on Monday that he’s back to practice, as are the three players who missed the Oklahoma game (two of which combine to average more than 20 points).
2021 NCAA Men’s Tournament Championship Odds Tracker
Baylor has a dazzling 12-4 record against the spread, but all four of those losses have come in their past nine games (including a 1.5-point ATS loss last time out against Auburn as a 13.5-point favorite). Still, the Bears have beaten the odds most of the time, and they’re 4-1 ATS on the road.
🔊 “They’re not going away, folks.” – @DShulman_ESPN and @JayBilas explain why this program is built to last.#SicEm 🐻 | #TimeIsNow 🏀 pic.twitter.com/LY4cLHAcw6
— Baylor Basketball (@BaylorMBB) January 31, 2021
Texas is 6-8 ATS this season, including just 2-7 ATS at home. Yikes. The Longhorns have failed to cover in their past six home games, though to be fair they were the favorite in each of those games (and they still won four of those six straight up).
One thing we should all be able to agree on: smash that over! Baylor has seen the over hit in four straight games, while Texas has seen it hit in seven straight (and nine of 14 overall).
In two meetings last year, Baylor swept Texas straight up and against the spread. The Bears were favored in both instances, by six points and 8.5 points.
We like the chances of the same thing happening this time around. It’s nice that Smart and the previously unavailable Texas players are back (both for their own welfare and the welfare of the game), but the Longhorns haven’t been able to practice as a full unit for quite some time.
Baylor, meanwhile, just keeps on rolling.
Pick: Baylor -5.5 (-114); Over 144.5 (-110)
Jordan Horrobin is a sports journalist whose MLB, NHL, NFL and NCAA work has appeared in outlets such as The Athletic, MLB.com, the Detroit Free Press and more. He is currently based in Toronto, also working as a contributor for Forbes.com and a freelance editor for Sportsnet.