Preview & Game Day Thread: Iowa State vs. Texas Tech

At home again!

Game Info

Good Guys: Texas Tech Red Raiders (11-5, 2-2)
Bad Guys: Iowa State Cyclones (8-8, 1-3)
When to Watch: Saturday, January 18th @ 3:00 p.m.
Where to Watch: United Supermarkets Arena | Lubbock, Texas
How to Watch: ESPNU | WatchESPN
How to Listen: 97.3 FM | Affiliates | TuneIn App
The Line: Texas Tech -7.5

Advanced Stats

KenPom 24 55
KP AdjO 71 28
KP AdjD 13 106
T-Rank 41 66
T-Rank O 94 35
T-Rank D 23 131
Haslemetric 29 53


POINT GUARD Davide Moretti (6-3/180) 13.1 / 2.3*
SHOOTING GUARD Kyler Edwards (6-4/200) 11.4 / 3.1*
SMALL FORWARD Jahmi’us Ramsey (6-4/195) 16.3 / 5.1
POWER FORWARD Terrence Shannon, Jr. (6-6/210) 11.6 / 4.5
CENTER TJ Holyfield (6-8/225) 8.9 / 4.8
SIXTH MAN Chris Clarke (6-6/220) 6.9 / 5.8*
SEVENTH MAN Kevin McCullar (6-6/195) 4.4 / 2.2
EIGHTH MAN Clarence Nadolny (6-3/195) 2.2 / 1.2
NINTH MAN Russel Tchewa (7-0/260) 1.8 / 0.9
TENTH MAN Andrei Savrasov (6-7/225) 0.9 / 1.3
ELEVENTH MAN Avery Benson (6-4/200) 2.6 / 1.8
TWELTH MAN Tyreek Smith (6-7/215) – / –
POINT GUARD Prentiss Nixon (6-2/188) 9.1 / 2.2*
SHOOTING GUARD Rasir Bolton (6-3/183) 14.8 / 2.9*
SMALL FORWARD Tyrese Haliburton (6-5/175) 15.9 / 7.8*
POWER FORWARD Michael Jacobson (6-9/240) 7.7 / 5.9
CENTER George Conditt IV (6-10/223) 9.7 / 5.6
SIXTH MAN Tre Jackson (6-1/176) 3.2 / 1.6
SEVENTH MAN Solomon Young (6-8/242) 8.3 / 3.3
EIGHTH MAN Zion Griffin (6-6/217) 3.8 / 2.3
NINTH MAN Caleb Grill (6-3/192) 2.2 / 1.3
TENTH MAN Terrence Lewis (6-6/205) 4.7 / 1.6

* Assists.

Starting 5

1. Stats. Well, Iowa State is stellar offensively, a very low turnover team, 19th in the nation, and they shoot 54% from the floor, 33rd in the nation, and almost never getting their shots blocked. The one thing where ISU is incredibly deficient is free throw rate, 307th in the nation, so they just don’t get to the free throw line and that probably means they are just shooting jump shots. Defensively is another matter, but on the defensive side of the ball, the Cyclones are very good at turning over opponents, 47th in the nation, and are terrific at not sending opponents to the free throw line, 33rd overall. Where they are deficient is that they allow opponents to grab offensive rebounds at an extraordinary rate, 31.5% of the time, and are 301st in the nation, and they allow opponents to shoot 37% from the three-point line, with is 306th in the nation.

2. Scouting. Haliburton is an absolute stud and I don’t know why he returned, he’s a perfect NBA three and D player, has size, can handle the rock, can dish the ball, and can score. He’s really a special player and does everything well. Oh, and he’s also maybe the best three-point shooting player on the team, 40% from beyond the arc, and is awesome inside the arc, 60%. Conditt is also a very good player, terrific shooter, and when he gets it around the rim, it is almost assuredly going in. He’s also the team’s best rebounder. Nixon is probably the team’s biggest liability, he’s a volume shooter from beyond the arc, only 26%.

3. How They Match Up. Texas Tech’s strength is Iowa State’s weakness. In looking at Texas Tech’s stats, the offensive stats, or lack of them, are pretty significant. The teams best shooter is Ramsey, and he’s pretty incredible, and Moretti is also very good. The team could very much use Shannon’s offensive burst, especially against a team like Iowa State. I think this is a game where I think the post players will need to be on their toes offensively, Iowa State has some really good shot-blockers and Holyfield tends to really not want to finish. A couple of notes, T-Rank has Texas Tech winning by 6.8 points and the line is Texas Tech -7.5. Iowa State is also 0-6 as an underdog, and 9-2 as a favorite, so thee’s that.

4. Reading Material. Avalanche-Journal – Texas Tech looks to keep Cyclones in check:

“Some guys that have played in their program, whether it be Young or Jacobson, those guys have got championship DNA,” Beard said this week.

No. 23 Tech (11-5, 2-2 in the Big 12) hosts Iowa State (8-8, 1-3) at 3 p.m. Saturday at United Supermarkets Arena. The Cyclones were the only team to beat the Red Raiders last year in Lubbock, a 68-64 victory last Jan. 16.

In conference play, Iowa State has lost to TCU and Baylor on the road, the latter in the Cyclones’ most recent game Wednesday, and lost at home to Kansas. ISU’s one Big 12 victory was last Saturday against Oklahoma.

Haliburton, a 6-5 guard, was one of the Big 12′s top freshmen last season and comes into Saturday averaging 15.9 points, 6.1 rebounds and a conference-high 7.8 assists per game.

“He’s a special player,” Beard said. “We all kind of identified that last year when he was having a fantastic freshman year. Like a 4-to-1 assists-to-turnover ratio, something like that, as a freshman. That’s very difficult to do.

“He’s obviously a knockdown shooter. But as all great players do, he just improved his game.”

Des Moines Register’s Randy Peterson – Iowa State’s Tyrese Haliburton needs a wingman — a hot-shooting teammate or two:

“It’s on us,” George Conditt said before practice Thursday. “We talked (Wednesday) night; I even voiced my own opinion. At this point in time, it’s on us. There’s nobody else that can do this. It’s us versus the world, and we have to realize that. There’s 15 players in the huddle. We’ve got each other’s back. At the end of the day, we have to fight for each other.”

He’s mostly referring to being tougher defensively, however, the offense isn’t perfect. Before Wednesday night, when was the last time Iowa State didn’t have a scorer with at least 10 points?

The Cyclones must find something, because Haliburton isn’t going to be a triple-double guy every game — like he was at TCU. As good as he is, he cannot always carry the team alone.

“There’s not one player that has to carry the load,” Conditt said. “Everybody has to be willing to step up, and willing to make plays. Prentiss (Nixon) has to step up. (Rasir Bolton) has to step up. Everyone has to step up. If one person is not clicking, that doesn’t mean the whole team is gone.

“We have to be willing and able to make that next step for each other. I know we can, and I know we will.”

5. Official Site. The official site has their preview right here:

No. 23 Texas Tech is back on its home court when it hosts Iowa State at 3 p.m. on Saturday in a matchup of last year’s Big 12 regular-season and tournament champions at the United Supermarkets Arena following splitting a two-game road trip.

The Red Raiders (11-5, 2-2 Big 12) are coming off a 77-63 win at Kansas State on Tuesday, while the Cyclones (8-8, 1-3 Big 12) took a 68-55 loss to No. 2 Baylor on Wednesday in Waco. The two programs have split their last four meetings. Doors will open at 1:30 p.m. on Saturday for all fans.

Texas Tech is 17th nationally in assists with 16.6 per game and leads the Big 12 with 266 total assists, 17.25 turnovers forced and 255 free throws made. The team is second in the conference with a 1.21 assist-to-turnover ratio, 75.2 free-throw percentage and 338 free throws attempted. The Red Raiders are 28th nationally with a 3.5 turnover margin and 36th with an 11.7 scoring margin that includes a 35-point win over Oklahoma State in the conference opener for the largest margin of victory in a Big 12 game in program history. Scoring 73.9 points per game has the team third in the conference coming into the game against the Cyclones who are second in the Big 12 by scoring 76.9 points per game and with a 45.4 shooting percentage.


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