NCAA Betting Preview
No. 15 Kansas Jayhawks (23-5) at No. 8 Missouri Tigers (24-4)
Sunday, 2:00PM Eastern
Bookmaker.com betting line -
The battle in the Big 12 is shaping out to be a dandy of a race. The Oklahoma Sooners appeared to be the dominant team in the conference before losing their last two straight games probably caused by the loss of superstar Blake Griffin. The No. 15 Kansas Jayhawks now sit on top of the standings in the conference one game ahead of both Oklahoma and Missouri. The no. 8 Missouri Tigers have kind of quietly sneaked into the picture and are putting together a great season. Missouri has a tough back to back scenario as they host Kansas and then will take the road to play Oklahoma in two games that will determine how the Big 12 regular season title shapes out. The Tigers could get everyone back to two losses in the conference if they could come up with a big win at home against Kansas on Sunday.
Kansas lost to the Tigers earlier this season in a close exciting game 62-60. The loss was the only ugly mark on the Jayhawks schedule over the past two months as they have won 12 of their last 13 games. Kansas could control their own destiny with a win over Missouri on Sunday considering they own the head to head battle with Oklahoma. Kansas could get some revenge from their earlier meeting with Missouri this season and put a strangle hold on the conference all in one showing this Sunday. The Jayhawks are averaging 77.4 points per game on the season led by junior guard Sherron Collins. Collins ranks 4th individually in the Big 12 scoring 18.3 points per game and is coming fresh off a big 26 point performance in the Jayhawks win over Oklahoma. Amazingly, Kansas out rebounded Missouri 42-26 in the last meeting despite the losing effort and they simply need more scorers to step forward this Sunday.
Missouri has one of the most potent offenses in the country. The Tigers rank 5th in scoring offense averaging 82.6 points per game on the season. Missouri is led by two seniors at the forward position on the inside. Leo Lyons and DeMarre Carroll lead the Tigers posting double figure averages. Lyons has posted 14.3 points per game this season while Carroll is averaging 17.1 points per game. The two standouts are also posting 7 rebounds each per night and they will need to be strong against the glass Sunday. In the last meeting, Missouri speedy defense posted a lot of problems for Kansas. The Tigers posted an outstanding 26 turnovers in the game while recording 14 steals in the contest. The Missouri aggressive defense will need a similar performance this Sunday if they want to continue to surprise people in the conference and around the nation.
What to watch for…
Keep you eye on the glass game. Both teams shot very poorly in their last meeting. However Kansas completely dominated the boards, but simply could not make any shots. Look for things to be a bit different this time and bank on Kansas knocking down a few more shots compared to the 41% shooting from the floor and 2-15 (15%) shooting from behind the arc in the last meeting.
Pick – Kansas