By the Numbers: Texas Tech at Kansas

The bad taste in their mouths gone from the season's first loss after winning the conference season opener on the road, KU looks to extend the nation's longest home winning streak against Texas Tech. Cue the statistics please!


Analysis: Last 5 Venue-Appropriate Games

The charts below illustrate the performance for each team over their last 5 venue-appropriate games. The red bar represents each team's current Sagarin Predictor rating, which represents overall team strength. The "Performance" is calculated by taking the opponent's Sagarin rating for the game and adding (subtracting) the margin of victory (loss) for each game. Homecourt advantage is also factored into the equation. The black line represents the linear trend over the last five games for the team.

 

In this analysis, Kansas has underperformed its season average by 3 points. Only twice in its last five home games has KU checked in above its season overall strength (California, Belmont). Its last game was by far its worst (Cornell). The trend is not all that steep but downward nevertheless. Despite all that, not once in the last five home games has KU performed anywhere near, let alone below, the expected TTU performance level based on its season rating.

 

Similarly, the Red Raiders have underperformed their season average by about 3.5 points. And again, like the Jayhawks, they have outdone their season average rating in only two of the last five non-home games (TCU, Wichita State) with their most recent game clearly the worst (Oklahoma State). Texas Tech's trend is a significantly downward one making it very difficult to give them much of a chance in this game. They have not even come within 12 points of the expected performance level for KU in their last five.

In summary, over the last five games for each team, Kansas has been 16.4 points better than Texas Tech. Both the season average ratings and this specific analysis give about a 20-point edge to the Jayhawks. Viva la home win streak.

 

Highlighted Efficiency Rankings
Note: There are 347 Div-I teams
(Source: KenPom.com)

Kansas

Offense #2 - Defense #5 - Tempo #82
Incredible eFG% numbers on both sides (#3 eFG%, #1 opp eFG%)
Good ball handling (#40 limit own TO%)
Strong offensive rebounding (#48)
Shoot well from inside and outside (#13 in 2FG%, #2 in 3FG%)
Particularly good at limiting opp 2FG% (#4) but also 3FG% (#40)
Win the BLK battle (#46 limit own, #11 against opp)
Great job of stealing ball (#41)
Allow opp extremely high % of FG's assisted (#303) but also high % for themselves (#24)

Size (Tall = Position is Top 50 in minutes-weighted height, Short = #250 or worse)
Tall: C, PF
Short: SF
Effective Height: #26

Other Factors:

Team is #292 in Experience
Team is #194 in Bench Minutes
Unusually high/low % of points scored by positions: Hi - None ... Lo - SG

Individual Player Highlights: (thru Jan 10)

Sherron Collins - #166 PF commited/40 min (good)
Xavier Henry - #100 eFG%, #187 STL%
Cole Aldrich - #49 OREB%, #17 DREB%, #6 BLK%, #126 FT Rate
Tyshawn Taylor - #200 AST Rate

Texas Tech

Offense #85 - Defense #122 - Tempo #16
Excellent utilization of FT line (#23 FTA/FGA)
Avoid having own shots blocked (#15)
Great at limiting % of opp's FG's that are assisted (#11)

Size (Tall = Position is Top 50 in minutes-weighted height, Short = #250 or worse)
Tall: None
Short: None
Effective Height: #203

Other Factors:

Team is #54 in Experience
Team is #158 in Bench Minutes
Unusually high/low % of points scored by positions: Hi - None ... Lo - C

Individual Player Highlights: (thru Jan 10)

Mike Singletary - #37 PF drawn/40min, #37 FT Rate
David Tairu - #184 TO Rate
Darko Cohadarevic - #112 OREB%
Brad Reese - #189 BLK%
John Roberson - #148 AST Rate
D'Walyn Roberts - #60 eFG%, #170 OREB%, #154 DREB%, #191 TO Rate, #197 BLK%, #120 FT Rate

Scoring Distribution:

On offense, KU is reasonably balanced as are its opponents.
On offense, TTU rarely relies on any 3FG's, while its opponents rely more heavily than usual on FT's.

 

Game Outlook

Texas Tech has the plays at the 16th fastest tempo according to KenPom.com. Unfortunately for them, KU's defensive efficiency is correlated in a good way with faster tempo, whereas faster pace is barely a positive for TTU's offensive efficiency. That may be an early sign of which way this game is headed.

On paper, the Red Raiders just don't have the horses to compete with KU's talent from top to bottom. Tech's most impressive guy according to the numbers (Roberts) happens to be one of the lowest possession usage guys as well (14%). They don't have the big guys to neutralize Cole Aldrich and the Morris Twins either. Kansas big men are going to have to miss a lot of "bunnies" if Tech is to have a chance at keeping things close.

The one area of the Four Factors in which Texas Tech excels is their utilization of the FT line (FTA/FGA ratio), where they rank #47. But unfortunately, they also allow their opponents to get plenty of freebies, too. This potential source of advantage is neutralized, leaving free throw percentage as really the only sliver of an edge expected to go the Raiders' way.

In the end, KU's significant eFG% advantage should overwhelm Texas Tech, and the other little things project to add on to make for a fairly comfortable blowout.

Sagarin ratings source: USAToday.com


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