Texas Tech vs. Creighton Odds, Picks, Predictions (11/21/22)

This is supposed to be the dream season for Creighton, which ranks No. 10 in the nation. So far, so good. The Blue Jays are 4-0, but the next two weeks will bring major tests as they go through the gauntlet of the Maui Invitational before facing off against Texas. Creighton opens the week against Mark Adams’ dominant defense, as the Red Raiders look for a huge early-season win.

Let’s take a look at the odds and make some picks and predictions for Friday’s Gavitt Tip-Off Games matchup in Cincinnati.

Texas Tech vs. Creighton Odds

Creighton is set to enter as a slight favorite in this neutral site matchup,

Texas Tech has developed a strong reputation over the last four seasons, but the Red Raiders have had some roster turnover and are without transfer big man Fardaws Aimaq. Continuity is one reason why Creighton was ranked so highly coming into the season, and it’s a reason why the Blue Jays will be viewed as one of the favorites in Maui. Can Mark Adams’ scheme throw off Creighton’s gameplan?

Texas Tech vs. Creighton Prediction & Pick

Creighton has continuity and the offensive advantage on its side, but it wouldn’t be the first time Texas Tech went into a game with that being true for the opponent. The question is whether the Blue Jays can overcome Texas Tech’s defense, and we’ve seen the Red Raiders give even the most talented offenses some trouble.

Creighton shoots plenty of threes, and teams have been all thrown off by this defense from behind the arc so far this season. If Creighton is favored by more than a point or two, I’m leaning toward Texas Tech being the safer pick here.

My Pick: Texas Tech Covers

Texas Tech vs. Creighton Key Matchups

Creighton has some talented young guards, but the offense runs through the frontcourt. Center Ryan Kalkbrenner has gotten off to a hot start this season, averaging 16.5 points and 6.8 rebounds, while sophomore Arthur Kaluma is building on a tremendous finish to last season.

Creighton has the rebounding advantage over Texas Tech early in the season, partly the result of Aimaq’s absence for the Red Raiders, but Texas Tech is averaging six blocks per game. That could make things interesting with Kalkbrenner in the paint.

It’s very early, but the turnover rates of these two teams are notable. Creighton has the fifth-best turnover rate in the nation, while Texas Tech sits 336th with 17.3 turnovers per game. The Red Raiders do a great job of forcing turnovers with their defense, but the Blue Jays aren’t a team that will just give away the ball.

Both teams are shooting just under 36 percent from three-point range early on – both a touch higher than last season (albeit against unimpressive competition). It doesn’t look like either team necessarily has the advantage in that department, though Creighton has a few willing shooters in Kaluma, Trey Alexander, and transfer Baylor Scheierman. The Blue Jays may not be a high-end three-point shooting team, but they won’t shy away from threes.

So far, no team has had success from behind the arc against Texas Tech’s swarming defense this season. The names change for this defense, but the scheme doesn’t. Case-in-point: The Red Raiders’ leading shot-blocker, Daniel Batcho, averaged less than 10 minutes last season, while steals leader De’vion Harmon transferred from Oregon.

Even the most talented offense can be thrown off by Mark Adams’ defense, and that’s worth considering here. Can the offense keep up? Texas Tech only scored 64 points against Louisiana Tech this past week. There will be pressure on former tournament hero Kevin Obanor to lead the way and have a big night on the offensive end.

Dan is a lifelong sports fan and graduate of Boston University. He’s covered several sports on Instagram since he was 12 and now writes about everything from betting trends to breaking news for Lineups.

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