Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#615 Oklahoma State 135 vs.
#616 West Virginia -10.5
Tuesday, February 18, 2020 at 7:00pm EST
Written by Blake V.

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Oklahoma State will look to continue its recent resurgence when it travels to No. 14 West Virginia on Tuesday night. The Cowboys improved to 13-12 on the season with an upset win against No. 24 Texas Tech on Saturday. West Virginia is riding a three-game losing skid, but the Mountaineers beat the Cowboys in their first meeting of the season.

Cowboys getting hot

Oklahoma State had yet to win a Big 12 game two weeks ago. Now, the Cowboys have rattled off wins in three of their last four games. The lone loss was also a solid performance, as they fell by eight points on the road against No. 1 Baylor. Their three wins in the recent stretch have come against TCU, Kansas State and No. 24 Texas Tech. Saturday’s win against the Red Raiders marked the first victory over a ranked team this season. Oklahoma State lost its first eight conference games of the year before this recent positive stretch.

Sophomore guard Isaac Likekele is tied for the team-high in points per game with 11.4. He is adding 5.1 rebounds per game and is the leading distributor with 4.7 dimes per game. Senior guard Lindy Waters III is also scoring 11.4 points per contest. He is adding 4.5 rebounds per game and 2.5 assists per game. Waters III is one of two threats from the perimeter, making 35 of 105 attempts from deep. Senior forward Cameron McGriff is also in double figures, scoring 10.5 points per outing. He is the team’s leading rebounder with 6.8 boards per contest.

Mountaineers needing bounce back

West Virginia is on a disappointing losing skid and has fallen to fourth place in the Big 12. The Mountaineers have dropped consecutive games to Oklahoma, No. 3 Kansas and No. 1 Baylor. Regardless, they are still sitting at No. 7 in KenPom’s rankings and are in-line for a No. 3 seed in the NCAA Tournament, according to ESPN’s Joe Lunardi. The final score of Saturday’s loss to Baylor is a deceiving one. The Bears led by 19 in the first half and were up 53-25 at one point in the second half. West Virginia used some late scoring to cut the final score down to 70-59.

Freshman forward Oscar Tshiebwe is scoring 11.6 points per game to lead the team. He is the leading rebounder as well, pulling down 9.2 boards per game. Sophomore forward Derek Culver is the only other player in double figures, scoring 10.3 points per contest. He is also an excellent rebounder, grabbing 8.5 rebounds per game. Freshman guard Miles McBride is adding 9.4 points per game off the bench. He is one of the best outside shooters on the team, making 35.0 percent of his 60 attempts from long range. Senior guard Jermaine Haley is scoring 9.1 points per game and is grabbing 4.7 rebounds per game.

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These teams are simply trending in opposite directions right now. Oklahoma State was dead in the water several weeks ago, but the Cowboys have shown a lot of fight over the last few weeks. They have covered the spread in four of their last five games. Oklahoma State has been one of the few teams to hold a winning record at West Virginia in the last few years, winning five of their last seven on the road in the series. The Mountaineers have only covered the spread once in their last six games. They might turn things around on Tuesday night, but I’m not betting on them to do it in blowout fashion.

Prediction: Oklahoma State +11

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West Virginia’s recent skid has directly correlated with the under hitting. The Mountaineers are always going to be good on the defensive end of the court, currently sitting at No. 2 in KenPom’s adjusted defensive efficiency ratings. If their offense is not clicking, their games are almost certainly going to go under the number. Each of their last five games have gone under the total. Oklahoma State is better on the defensive end of the court than the offensive end, so I like Tuesday’s game to go under.

Prediction: Under 135
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Written By Blake V.

Blake is a lifelong sports fan and hoops junkie. Prior to joining our team at Winners & Whiners and StatSalt, Blake worked for several newspapers and websites. He enjoys combining his beat writing expertise with the knack for finding the winning edge in a matchup. Remember, it’s a marathon, not a sprint.