Game 21: Texas Tech at No. 3 Kansas – Preview and Prediction

The No. 3 Kansas Jayhawks return back home to Allen Fieldhouse on Saturday afternoon to face the defending Big 12 co-champion in Texas Tech. The Red Raiders fell at home last week in overtime to Kentucky, but bounced back nicely with a home win over West Virginia on Wednesday night. The Jayhawks come rolling in, winners of their last five games. KU still sits one game back in the league standings of Baylor, who will just not lose.

  • Saturday, February 1, 2020, 3:00 pm CDT
  • Allen Fieldhouse — Lawrence, Kan.
  • ESPN or ESPN App
  • Through seven games of Big 12 play, Kansas sits alone in second place at 6-1 in the league standings, one game behind Baylor (7-0). Texas Tech, West Virginia and TCU are two games behind KU.
  • KU leads the series with Texas Tech, 35-6, including an 18-1 mark in Allen Fieldhouse meetings. Kansas may have won 18 of the last 20 matchups, but the series is tied at 2-2 in the last four battles.
  • KU is ranked No. 4 in the NET rankings as of Jan. 29 games. The Jayhawks’ strength of schedule is No. 1 nationally. Kansas is the only school with eight Quadrant 1 wins. KU is 8-3 against Q1.
  • Kansas is 9-1 at home this season, including 8-1 in Allen Fieldhouse, which will celebrate its 65th birthday on March 1. Overall, KU is 796-114 in Allen Fieldhouse, four wins from No. 800 in the historic venue.
  • Saturday’s game will mark the fifth time since 2015 that the Jayhawks will host a Final Four team from the previous season in Allen Fieldhouse. KU is 4-0 in the previous four instances.
  • In his eight outings since the calendar turned to 2020, senior Udoka Azubuike is averaging 12.5 ppg, 10.5 rpg and 3.8 bpg. Azubuike has also scored 16 or more points in four of those outings. KU is 24-1 during Azubuike’s career when he scores 15 or more points.

Red Raiders to Watch

Jahmi’us Ramsey – Freshman, Guard, 6’4″
The freshman leads Tech in scoring at 15.3 PPG and is shooting 45.2 percent from the field and 41.4 percent from three-point land. After being pretty much a non-factor against Kentucky, Ramsey rebounded nicely with 21-point performance against West Virginia on Wednesday on 7-11 shooting and 5-8 from beyond the arc. The freshmen can fill it up. I wouldn’t be shocked to see Marcus Garrett garner this matchup.

Davide Moretti – Junior, Guard, 6’3”
Moretti is a deadly sharpshooter. He’s coming off a 25-point performance against West Virginia, were he was 6-10 from the field and 4-5 from three-point. He’s money from the free-throw line at 92 percent. This is a guy you cannot let get hot or it will be lethal.

Prediction

Kansas will for the most part finally be back at full strength, as David McCormack comes back from suspension. Nevertheless, it seems as Head Coach Bill Self will stick with the four guard lineup and not because of anything lacking on McCormack’s end, KU is just a better team playing four guards. McCormack’s return should take some pressure off of Udoka Azubuike, as he was pretty much the only post player available the last two games.

Christian Braun is emerging as a go-to player for the Jayhawks, a nice third weapon to go along with Azubuike and Devon Dotson. I think as the calendar flips to February, Kansas is starting to find its groove offensively. If this game was in Lubbock, I might have different thoughts about it, but it’s not. I’m going with the Jayhawks to win a close one against a well-coached team and extend their win streak to six. They’ll also stay pace with Baylor in the Big 12 race. This will be a nice start to the weekend before the Chiefs cap it off with a Super Bowl victory on Sunday night.

Kansas 78, Texas Tech 70
TTU +9

AUDIO PREVIEW: LINK

Season Record: 17-3 (11-9 ATS)

Bobby Norell

My name is Bobby Norell. I'm from a small town in northern Indiana. I recently graduated from Indiana University with a degree in Sport Communication. Even though my diploma says I'm a Hoosier, my love for the Jayhawks has never wavered. They'll always come No.1.