Betting College Basketball: Cowboys Slight Favorites Over Kansas in Tonight’s Big 12 Action


The Kansas Jayhawks are out for revenge and first place in the Big 12 as they take on the Oklahoma St. Cowboys in tonight’s Big 12 action. The Cowboys upset Kansas earlier this month 85-80 at Lawrence, topped off by OSU guard Marcus Smart’s cartwheel and backflip on the Jayhawk logo as Jayhawk fans were leaving Allen Field House tasting a rare home loss. The Jayhawks are one point underdogs in today’s game, with a total set at 135.5

Travis Ford knows the Jayhawks are going to use the backflip as motivating tool. “We’ve had teams do that to us, celebrate when we’ve lost. And it’s a little bit a sign of respect. Now Kansas is going to show it (to their players), going to show our guys celebrating, no question. But that’s respect, we know how hard it is to beat Kansas period, I don’t care where it’s at. But you know, it’s a natural reaction, maybe not a backflip, but it’s a natural reaction.”

Self agrees, although he doesn’t admit to showing clips of the backflip to his players. “We need a payback type attitude going down there,” Self said. “They’re good. Before the season, I said I liked their roster better than anybody in the league. That hasn’t changed.”

The Jayhawks have owned the Cowboys like they have owned the rest of the Big 12 conference, leading the overall series between the two teams 106-54. OSU’s win in Lawrence snapped a four game Kansas win streak against Oklahoma St.. The Cowboys do have a history of playing Kansas tough at Gallagher-Iba Arena in Stillwater, however. Since the Big 12 began in 1997, Oklahoma and Kansas have split the eight games played in Gallagher-Iba. Kansas coach Bill Self, a former player at Oklahoma St., is 9-5 at Kansas against his alma matter.

The Jayhawks, ranked #10 in the Pomeroy ratings, is 21-4 overall and 9-3 in the Big 12 Conference. Scoring 1.01 points each possession, Kansas ranks fifth in the conference in Offensive Efficiency.They are sixth in turnover percentage, first in offensive rebounding, fifth in free throw percentage, and fourth in pace. Kansas’s opponent’s average 0.9 points per possession against Kansas in the Big 12 Conference, second lowest in the conference. Kansas holds opponents to a 42.4% effective field goal rate, second in the Big 12 Conference. They rank sixth in forcing turnovers, second in rebounding, first in blocks, and first in steals.

Junior guard Markel Brown leads OSU in scoring at 15.8 points per game. He averages 17.3 ppg in league play. Smart leads the Big 12 with 2.9 steals per game to go with his 15.0 ppg scoring average. Sophomore Le’Bryan Nash averages 13.3 points and 4.3 rebounds. The Cowboys 9-3 in the Big 12 Conference and 19-5 overall in the 2012-13 season. According to Ken Pomeroy, Oklahoma St. has the #34 rated offense and #16 rated defense in college basketball, adjusted for schedule strength.Oklahoma St. is third in the Big 12 Conference in Offensive Efficiency, averaging 1.1 points per possession on offense. They are third in effective field goal percentage in the conference. They rank third in turnover percentage, eighth in offensive rebounding, sixth in two point field goal percentage, third in free throw percentage, and play at the fastest pace in the Big 12. On defense, the Cowboys are the third ranked team in the Big 12 in defensive efficiency, allowing 0.9 points per possession to its conference opponents. Opponents have a 47.9% effective field goal rate, fifth in the conference. They rank third in forcing turnovers, first in rebounding, second in blocks, and second in steals.



Kansas is 5-1 against the spread in their last six games following a win of more than 20 points.
Kansas is 1-5 ATS in their last six road games.
Oklahoma St. is 4-0 ATS in their last four games after they fail to cover.
Cowboys are 42-20-3 ATS in their last 65 home games.
Cowboys are 2-8 ATS in their last ten games vs. a team with a winning record.
Cowboys are 1-8 ATS in their last nine games vs. a team with a winning % above .600.


Betting the Pucks: Pittsburgh Opens -175 Favorites against the Flyers

Philadelphia Flyers (+144) at the Pittsburgh Penguins (-156) Total: 5.5

On Wednesday, the 11-5-0-0 Pittsburgh Penguins will match up at home in the Consol Energy Center against the 7-9-0-1 Philadelphia Flyers, currently in fourth place in the Atlantic division. This will be the second meeting between the two teams. In the season opener Pittsburgh beat the Flyers 3-1 on goals from Tyler Kennedy, James Neal and Chris Kunitz. Philadelphia won its last time out, thrashing the New York Ilsnaders 7-0 on Monday.The Flyers have scored 2.6 goals per game away from home in 2013 while giving up 3.2 goals to its opponents, enough to earn Philadelphia a 3-8-0 record away from the Wells Fargo Center. Philadelphia is averaging 27.5 shots per game as visitors, and allowing 26.8 shots to its opponents. The Flyers have gone under in 59% of its games this year. They have been struggling on offense this year; Philadelphia has scored just 2.65 goals per game this season compared to 3.2 goals per game last season. Their biggest problem has been injuries. The Flyers have no fewer than five players, including top-line winger Scott Hartnell and defenseman Andrej Meszaros, on injured reserve.

Sidney Crosby will once again lead the Penguins attack. Crosby enters tonight’s game with 24 points, second in the league in scoring. He has recorded 17 assists, tied for the league lead. His plus-minus rating of plus 11 is fourth in the NHL this season. Pittsburgh is 3-3-0 at home so far this year, scoring 3 goals a game while giving up 2.8 goals per game. They are averaging 30 shots on goal at home, with a 10% shot success rate. On defense, the Penguins have allowed 23.5 shots on goal for a 12% shot success rate Pittsburgh is 8-2-0 in its last 10 games, with a goal differential of 14 goals so far this season. Pittsburgh has gone over in 56% of its games in 2013. Goalie Marc-Andre Fleury, who turned aside 26 shots in the season opener, has given up two or fewer goals in seven of 11 starts in 2013. Expect a solid game from Hart Trophy winner Evgeni Malkin, who had an assist in the opener, has 53 points (20 goals, 33 assists) in 37 career games versus the Flyers.


Trends for tonight’s games:


The Flyers are 3-11 in their last 14 road games.
The Flyers are 2-9 in their last 11 vs. a team with a winning record.

Pittsburgh is 40-13 in their last 53 vs. a team with a losing record.
The Penguins are 22-8 in their last 30 home games.
The Penguins are 47-20 in their last 67 games playing on 2 days rest.


Total trends:
Over is 5-1-1 in the Flyers last 7 after scoring 5 goals or more in their previous game.
Over is 6-0 in Pittsburgh’s last 6 games playing on 2 days rest.
Over is 8-0 in Pitttsburgh’s last 8 when their opponent scores 5 goals or more in their previous game.
Over is 5-1 in Pittsburgh’s last 6 home games vs. a team with a road winning % of less than .400.