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Texas Tech with Tremendous Opportunity in Austin

Texas Tech takes on Texas 1 p.m. (CT) Saturday in Austin looking to complete the season sweep.

Who: Texas Tech (13-8, 3-6) vs. Texas (15-7, 6-3)

Where: Austin, Texas, Frank Erwin Center

When: Saturday, February 6, 1:00 p.m. (CT)

TV: Longhorn Network

Radio: Texas Tech Sports Network

Notable: With the victory over Oklahoma State, Texas Tech has already equaled last season’s overall and conference win totals.

Quotable: “We’ve had a number of opportunities, but the one thing we did well was get defensive stops. We played much better defense, better than we did in our previous late-game losses. The guys believe now that if we get the stops, then we’ll have enough. Their spirits are up because when you win a game like that, everybody’s excited.”—Tubby Smith on the Red Raiders’ frame of mind following the overtime win over Oklahoma State

The Texas Tech Red Raiders will do battle with a smoking hot Texas Longhorn basketball team in Austin. Since losing at TCU on January 9, the Horns have won six of seven games, including road victories over West Virginia and Baylor. Texas’ only loss in that stretch came by nine points on the road to Kansas. 

The Longhorns’ recent success belies a fairly pedestrian statistical line. Hence, Texas shoots only 44 percent from the field and 64 percent from the free throw line, allows opponents to hit 33 percent of their 3-pointers, is negative-one in rebounding margin, and are only plus-one in assist/turnover ratio. What matters however, is the wins and losses, and by that standard Texas is a borderline lock for the NCAA tournament. 

Texas continues to be led by point guard Isaiah Taylor (pictured below) who averages 15 points, five assists and three rebounds per contest. Backcourt mate Jevan Felix kicks in 11 points per game and shoots 39 percent from distance.

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Connor Lammert is Texas’ leading active rebounder with six boards per game. He also scores seven points per outing and shoots 81 percent from the stripe. 

Though the task is daunting, a Texas Tech win today would mark the first time since the 1986-87 school year the Red Raiders swept the football and both basketball games as well as the first time since 1955-56 Tech defeated UT in both sports in Austin.

From a team standpoint there isn’t a great deal about the Red Raiders that jumps out at you. The numbers would suggest that Tech is a solid, but not outstanding ball club at this point. The Red Raiders outshoot opponents 44 to 41 percent from the field, but trail them from beyond the arc 34 to 32. 

Tech also shoots 75 percent from the free throw line—where they sometimes make a living—and is plus-two in rebound margin. 

Individually, Devaugntah Williams continues to lead Tech in scoring with 12 points per game, but he’s now shooting only 38 percent from the field and 30 percent from 3-point territory. His rebounding total has also dropped to three per contest, and he has one more turnover than assist.  

Toddrick Gotcher continues to do good work, averaging 11 points, four rebounds and four assists per contest, while turning the ball over less than once per game, and shooting 39 percent from 3-point country.

Zach Smith is Tech’s lone true bulwark on the front line with 10 points and seven rebounds per game. 


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