TCU HORNED FROGS AT OKLAHOMA SOONERS
Lloyd Noble Center Ė Norman, Oklahoma
Tip-off: Saturday, 1:00 pm ET
Line: N/A, Total: N/A
Oklahoma will be hoping to beat TCU for a second time this season when the teams meet on Saturday.
Both TCU and Oklahoma are playing some very good basketball this season, and both teams actually have a chance to win the Big 12 this season. Usually it is Kansas that is in complete control of this conference, but the Jayhawks have looked vulnerable when playing at home this season. That is something that is truly never the case and it means that if there is ever a year for the Jayhawks to let somebody else win then itís probably this one. TCU has already notched a few impressive wins this year, as the Horned Frogs have wins over SMU, Nevada and Baylor thus far. Oklahoma, however, has been even better, beating Oregon, USC, Wichita State, Northwestern and TCU already. Heading into this week, the Sooners also happened to have the 11th most efficient offense in the nation (according to Ken Pomeroy). Itís worth noting that these teams have already met this season. The two of them played in Fort Worth, where the Sooners won 90-89 as a two-point road underdog. With that victory, Oklahoma improved to 8-2 SU and 6-4 ATS when facing TCU since January 2014. Having to play in Norman will only make things tougher on TCU, but the team is going to be confident in its ability to hang with this Oklahoma squad.
TCU is going to feel pretty good about its chances of coming away with a road win over this Oklahoma team on Saturday. While the Sooners beat them the last time they met, the game was extremely close and could have gone either way. One guy that played really well in that game was G Kenrich Williams. Williams was just 5-for-15 from the field in that contest, but he still finished with 22 points, nine rebounds, six assists and four steals in 39 minutes of action. The team definitely needs him to be more efficient from the floor on Saturday, but the Horned Frogs will also want him to stuff the stat sheet in a similar fashion. TCU surprisingly got 29 combined points from Fs Kouat Noi and Ahmed Hamdy-Mohamed against Oklahoma in that one-point loss. That likely wonít happen again on Saturday, but the Horned Frogs should also expect to get more than 18 total points from starters F Vladimir Brodziansky, G Jaylen Fisher and F JD Miller. All three of them average double digits in scoring, so look for them to come to life in this one. Miller is a guy that can really change this game, as he can be extremely tough to guard around the basket when he has it going. He has a ridiculous motor, too. That could help the Horned Frogs steal some momentum on the road.
Almost everybody in the country knows G Trae Young by now, and the rest will find out who he is at some point. Young has drawn comparisons to Steph Curry for his ability to shoot the ball off the dribble, but Young has actually been a lot better than Curry was in college. The freshman has regularly lit teams up as a scorer, but he was also averaging double digits in assists heading into this week. And Young is a guy that should be able to go off in this game, too. When Oklahoma played TCU in Fort Worth, the gunner finished the game with 39 points and 14 assists in 38 minutes of action. He knocked down six threes in that contest, and he also attempted 18 free throws. That is one of the most underrated parts of Youngís game. Despite being a bit small and slow, Young gets to the basket and draws fouls at an impressive rate. Look for him to keep it up here. And the reason that Oklahoma is so good is that Young isnít alone out there. The Sooners also have studs like G Christian James, F Brady Manek, G Kameron McGusty and F Khadeem Lattin. James, Manek and McGusty can all step it up and show up as the second-leading scorer on this team on any given night. Lattin, meanwhile, does the dirty work for this Sooners team. He is a good rebounder and also does impressive work as a shot-blocker. As does C Jamuni McNease, who comes off the bench to provide some toughness inside.