West Virginia Mountaineers vs. Texas Longhorns Picks, Predictions, Odds

Jan. 1, 2022
Dave Schwab
VI Betting Expert

Saturday’s college basketball betting schedule kicks off the New Year with a Big 12 season opener between the West Virginia Mountaineers and the No. 17 Texas Longhorns. The scheduled 12:00 p.m. ET tip from Frank Erwin Center in Austin will be covered nationally on ESPNU.

Score Prediction

West Virginia 68, Texas 66

Best Bets

West Virginia Mountaineers vs. Texas Longhorns Predictions

West Virginia would most likely enter the national rankings with a win on Saturday. It went 11-1 straight-up in non-conference play with the only loss coming against Marquette on Nov. 19. Two of the biggest wins were against Connecticut as a 2.5-point favorite and against UAB as a 3.5- point underdog. Saturday will be the Mountaineers’ toughest test of the season.

The Longhorns come into their Big 12 opener at 10-2 SU. They lost to Gonzaga and Seton Hall as underdogs and they won the other 10 games closing as heavy double-digit favorites in most of those contests. To hold onto the current No. 17 ranking or move up the board, Texas needs to prove it can beat a quality team such as West Virginia.

Over the years, this has always been a tight series. The road team has actually won three of the last five meetings SU and I am sensing another road win on Saturday. To get the day started with a bang, I am taking the Mountaineers in a SU money line bet.

West Virginia Mountaineers vs. Texas Longhorns Betting Odds

More Odds | Futures Odds

West Virginia Mountaineers vs. Texas Longhorns Betting Resources

  • Matchup: Big 12
  • Date: Saturday, January 1, 2022
  • Venue: Frank Erwin Center
  • Location: Austin, Texas
  • TV-Time: ESPNU - 12:00 p.m. ET

West Virginia Mountaineers Betting Analysis

Straight Up - SU, Against the Spread - ATS, Over-Under (O/U)

  • SU: 11-1
  • ATS: 7-5
  • O/U: 4-8

West Virginia has been able to cover against the spread in its last four games after going 3-5 ATS in its first eight outings. The total went OVER 131.5 points in the 82-52 romp against Youngstown State on Dec. 22 after staying UNDER in the previous five games.

This is a team that is not going to overwhelm its opponents on the scoreboard with an average of 70.4 points per game. Yet, the Mountaineers do have the ability to shut teams down on defense with a points-allowed average of 59.8.

Guard Taz Sherman has been one of the biggest reasons for West Virginia’s strong start. He leads the team in points (20.9) and assists (2.8) while shooting 44.2% from the field and 35.4% from three-point range. Sean McNeil is next on that list with 14 PPG and forward Jalen Bridgesleads in rebounds with an average of 5.1.

The Mountaineers are shooting 45% from the field and hitting 31.5% of their three-point attempts. Two notable weaknesses are under the boards with 33.6 rebounds a game and at the free throw line with a 62.4 shooting percentage.

Texas Longhorns Betting Analysis

Straight Up - SU, Against the Spread - ATS, Over-Under (O/U)

  • SU: 10-2
  • ATS: 5-7
  • O/U: 5-5

Texas was able to cover the hefty 34 points in a recent 78-33 beat down of Incarnate Wood after failing to cover in its previous four games. The Longhorns are 5-7 ATS in their first 12 games this year. The total has stayed UNDER in their last five games and in nine of those 12 outings.

This is another team that plays solid ball on the defensive end of the court by holding opposing teams to just 51.3 PPG. The level of competition has not been all that tough but the Longhorns only allowed 64 points in the loss to Seton Hall.

Offensively, a trio of forwards in Timmy Allen, Tre Mitchell and Dylan Disu have combined to score an average of 33.1 PPG. Disu missed quite a bit of playing time while recovering from a previous injury, but he has been back in the lineup for the past few games. Allen is pulling down a team-high 6.4 rebounds a game.

The Longhorns matchup well shooting the ball with a 47.4 field goal percentage. They are shooting 33.6% from three-point range. They also match West Virginia under the boards with 33.8 rebounds a game. Texas is shooting 76.5% from the free throw line.

Texas has gone UNDER the point total in nine of its last 12 games. (AP)

Inside the Stats - West Virginia Mountaineers

  • Record: 11-1
  • VI Ranking: 17
  • PS/G: 70.4 (222nd)
  • PA/G: 59.8 (28th)
  • ORtg: 104.2 (156th)
  • DRtg: 88.5 (42nd)

Inside the Stats - Texas Longhorns

  • Record: 10-2
  • VI Ranking: 12
  • PS/G: 72.1 (183rd)
  • PA/G: 51.3 (1st)
  • ORtg: 112.3 (30th)
  • DRtg: 80 (3rd)

Key Players to Watch

  • WVU: Taz Sherman - G (20.9 ppg)
  • WVU: Sean McNeil - G (14 ppg)
  • TEX: Timmy Allen - F (11.9 ppg, 6.4 rpg)
  • TEX: Tre Mitchell - C (10.9 ppg, 5.3 rpg)

West Virginia Mountaineers vs. Texas Longhorns Betting Conclusion

As mentioned, these teams have played each other tough over the years. Texas has the slight 11-9 SU edge over the last 20 meetings. It has gone 13-6-1 ATS over the same span of games. The total went OVER in both meetings last season with the road team each game SU.

West Virginia passed the only test it faced as an underdog this season with the recent upset over UAB. Past head-to-head betting trends have shown that playing at home is not as big of an edge as it normally would be. I believe this opens the door for a SU West Virginia win.

West Virginia Mountaineers vs. Texas Longhorns Betting Trends

  • West Virginia has covered the spread in four straight games.
  • West Virginia has gone UNDER the point total in eight of its last 12 games.
  • Texas has gone UNDER the point total in nine of its last 12 games.