Baylor is coming off a shocking 84-66 loss to Texas Tech as 10.5-point favorite, but the Bears are 3-1-1 ATS in their last five games off a loss and 5-1 ATS in their last six home games versus teams with a winning road record. The home team is 13-5 ATS in the last eighteen meetings in this series, while the Bears have won ten of the last twelve meetings in Waco (8-1 since 2002).
Baylor is 13-3 SU at home this season where it is averaging 79.3 points per game on 47.8% shooting from the field and 38.6% from beyond the arc. The Bears’ projected lineup has 460 games of combined experience, including 211 starts. More importantly, head coach Scott Drew has used the same starting lineup in 24 of Baylor’s 25 games this season so chemistry runs deep on the court.
Overall, Baylor is 7.7 points per game better than average offensively (77.0 points per game against teams that would combine to allow 69.3 points per game). The Bears rank in the top-15 nationally in assists per game (2nd), offensive rebound percentage (4th), assist-to-turnover ratio (13th) and rebound margin (13th).
Five Baylor players are averaging ten or more points per game in conference play this season, which is the most of any team in the Big 12 Conference. The Bears should have success against a pedestrian Iowa State defense that is just 0.2 points per game better than average (73.8 points per game to teams that would combine to average 74.0 points per game).
The question is whether Baylor will be able to slow down a potent Iowa State attack that is averaging 82.3 points per game on 50.2% shooting from the floor and 37.8% from three-point territory. The good news is that the Bears are limiting opponents to 65.1 points per game at home this season.
The bad news for Baylor investors is the fact that the Bears are allowing conference opponents to shoot 47.9% from the field and 41.9% from beyond the arc. However, the Bears rank 9th in the country in steal percentage, while Rico Gathers ranks 34th in defensive rebound percentage (26.3%). Lester Medford ranks 61st in the nation in steal percentage (3.5%).
Take Baylor minus the points as Oskeim Sports’ Free College Basketball Sports Pick on Tuesday, February 16.
Bonus College Basketball Free Sports Picks:
- Illinois-Chicago (+5.5) over Youngstown State
- Texas (-2.5) over West Virginia