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Oklahoma Sooners vs. Kansas Jayhawks Pick-Odds-Predction 1/8/14

Kansas Jayhawks (9-4) at Oklahoma Sooners (12-2)

College Basketball: Wednesday, January 8, 2014 at 7:00 pm (Lloyd Noble Center)

The Line: Oklahoma Sooners +4.5 -- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds

TV: ESPN2

Storyline: #18 Kansas opens its Big 12 schedule at Oklahoma Wednesday reeling after a 61-57 loss to San Diego State Sunday in a game that was to serve as a final tune-up before entering league play.

The Breakdown: The Jayhawks are now 9-4 after the loss, bringing their 68-game nonconference winning streak at Allen Fieldhouse—dating back to 2006—to an end. Kansas shot miserably, hitting 17 of 57 from the field and just 4 of 16 from beyond the arc, while also being outrebounded 51-39. Freshman guards Andrew Wiggins and Frank Mason had 14 points each, and freshman C Joel Embiid added 12 points and 12 rebounds. The Aztecs’ length provided problems right out of the gate as Kansas missed eight of its first nine shots, allowing San Diego State to open up several advantages and take a 29-23 lead into the half. The Aztecs built the lead to as many as 11 points in the second half before the Jayhawks came storming back, trimming the lead to 57-56 with under a minute remaining. Senior San Diego State G Xavier Thames would then seal the game from the free throw line, going 4 for 4 in the final seconds. Led by Wiggins’ 15.8 ppg, Kansas ranks 76th nationally with 77.7 ppg, and 21st with a .492 field goal percentage.

Oklahoma Sooners vs. Kansas Jayhawks Pick-Odds-Predction 1/8/14

Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Meanwhile, Oklahoma won its conference opener 88-85 over Texas Saturday, despite being outshot from the field 50 percent to 42 percent. The Sooners countered by hitting 13 of 28 from beyond the arc and outrebounding the Longhorns 39-28. Sophomore G Buddy Hield had a team-high 22 points on 8 of 14 shooting and connected on 4 of 7 from distance, while sophomore G Isaiah Cousins added 13 points and 6 rebounds. The Horns held small advantages early in the first half until OU broke the game open with a 15-4 run that took them the five minute mark with a 35-23 lead, but Texas would cut the deficit to 43-39 by the half. The Longhorns started the second half with a 10-2 run and led by as many as seven points before the Sooners clawed their way back and took the lead for good on two free throws from freshman G Jordan Woodard with under a minute remaining. On the season, OU is averaging the country’s 5th best scoring total at 87.3 ppg on 46 percent shooting and senior G Cameron Clark leads the team with 17.7 ppg.

Rick’s Pick: The line in this one currently favors Kansas by 4.5 points and it’s hard to imagine that a team with probably more budding talent than anyone in the nation is in trouble, but they are. A loss here would just compound the loss to San Diego State as things promise to get dicey quick for the Jayhawks with four ranked teams in their next four after OU. Needless to say, this is a must-win. 

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Kansas -4.5

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