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No. 6 Texas Tech vs. No. 3 Arkansas preview, picks for second round of 2021 NCAA Tournament

The Texas Tech Red Raiders and Arkansas Razorbacks meet at Hinkle Fieldhouse in the second round of the 2021 NCAA Tournament. We’ve got everything you need on both teams ahead of the game here.

Texas Tech Red Raiders guard Mac McClung (0) shoots against the Utah State Aggies during the second half in the first round of the 2021 NCAA Tournament at Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall. Robert Goddin-USA TODAY Sports

In a South Region second round matchup, the favorites will meet as the No. 3 seed Arkansas Razorbacks face the No. 6 seed Texas Tech Red Raiders on Sunday in the second round. The game will be at Hinkle Fieldhouse on Sunday in Indianapolis, and will tip-off at 6:10 p.m. on TNT.

No. 3 Arkansas: 23-6 (13-4 SEC): At-large

First round result: 85-68 win over No. 14 Colgate
KenPom rating: 16 Overall, 36 Offense, 11 Defense
NET ranking: 14, (6-5 vs. Quad 1)
Leading scorer: Moses Moody 17.4 ppg
Key stat: 82.4 points per game (12th in the nation)

The Razorbacks went on a 14-0 run to close out the second half holding a 36-33 lead, and never looked back against the Raiders. Justin Smith led the game with a double-double of 29 points (9-17 FG, 11-13 FT) and 13 rebounds.

It was the tenth win in 11 outings for the UofA, who forced 22 turnovers from Colgate and held Patriot League Player of The Year Jordan Burns to just 13 points on 4-13 from the field with six turnovers.

They’ll need Moses Moody to continue to dominate, as he’s averaging 17.4 points and 5.9 rebounds per game this season.

No. 6 Texas Tech: 18-10 (9-8 Big 12): At-large

First round result: 65-53 win over No. 11 seed Utah State
KenPom rating: 19 Overall, 32 Offense, 19 Defense
NET ranking: 16 (4-10 VS Quad 1)
Leading scorer: Mac McClung 15.7 ppg
Key stat: 90.7 adjusted defense efficiency

Texas Tech pulled away from Utah State in the second half, led by a game-high 16 points from Mac McClung. The stifling defense of the Red Raiders forced 22 turnovers, while quality ball security from McClung and backcourt mate Kyler Edwards kept TTU to just eight as a team.

The 22 turnovers was actually under the 24.1 average of the Red Raiders this season, who haven’t lost a non-conference game since facing Houston on November 25th.

Odds from DraftKings Sportsbook

Point spread: Arkansas -0.5
Point total: 140.5
Moneyline: Arkansas -109, Texas Tech -109

The Picks

Against The Spread Pick: Texas Tech +0.5
Point total pick: Under 140.5
Pick to Win: Texas Tech -109

With the line currently sitting at a half point, it tells us that we are in pick’em territory in this second round battle between Arkansas and Texas Tech. The Razorbacks got blitzed in the first round by Colgate, but got their act together thanks to their defense. Arkansas held the Raiders to only 39.7% shooting from the field. They will need that same type of effort against a gritty and tough Texas Tech squad.

Chris Beard’s crew is not scared of the moment and imposed their will on Aggies, holding them to only 21.1% shooting from behind the arc. Texas Tech is the better rebounding team, which should ultimately gives them the edge and send them to the Sweet 16.

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