Texas basketball vs. Texas Tech quarterfinal preview

Texas basketball is playing against Texas Tech in a Big 12 tournament quarterfinal matchup on Thursday. The winner will advance to the semifinals and be one step closer to getting an automatic bid to the NCAA tournament. Let’s break down the teams.

Texas offense

This offense has played pretty good as of late, which resulted in the Longhorns going 3-0 on their last three games. However, the last time the Longhorns matched up with the Red Raiders just two weeks ago, they scored a season low 59 points. That can’t happen in this tournament at all or they’ll be sitting on the couch at home watching the NCAA Tournament. This is potentially the final matchup of the season these two squads will play against one another. So, the winner of this one will get the last laugh.

Look for Andrew Jones, Courtney Ramey and Matt Coleman III to lead the way in scoring for the Longhorns offense. These three have showed out and been the backbone for this offense, particularly Jones, who’s had some big performances and is a big reason Texas won those other games. These three need to make sure they are playing well enough for the Longhorns to be successful in this tournament.

Texas defense

Those three are also responsible for how good the Longhorns play on the defensive side of the ball. They all average more than a steal per game. That is huge when considering the opposing offense now needs to keep and eye on more than one player. Another influential player on defense is Greg Brown, who averages more than one block a game and is another key to their defense.

Now, averages are one thing, and how you perform in the game is another. This team has gone through a roller coaster of performances. There were games where the Longhorns played exceptional and then there were others where the defense was a main contributor to the loss. The team needs to find that balance and be consistent if it has any hopes of winning the Big 12 Tournament.

Texas Tech offense

The last time these two squads played, four out the Red Raiders five starters scored in double figures. You know you’re playing bad defensively when that many players from the opposing team score in double figures. Something like this won’t happen again and the Longhorns definitely put some emphasis on that when preparing for the Red Raiders. However, this offense will run through Mac McClung, and that is who the Longhorns must focus on stopping.

Texas Tech defense

This defense shut down Texas in the last matchup, so Texas Tech is more than likely looking at the film from that game and aiming for a repeat performance. They played well defensively, but the Red Raiders were just decent offensively. Yes, they had multiple players score in double figures, but they only scored a total of 68 points to beat the Longhorns.

Looking forward

Texas shot the ball horribly in the last matchup. If the Longhorns shoot a lot better, they should be fine. This game will feature more scoring towards the upper 70-point range. Texas is the better team despite not playing like it at times. The Longhorns will win this game with a final score of 76-73 to advance to the semifinals of the Big 12 Tournament.

Photo courtesy of KStateSports.com