There’s a Sooner State showdown on the hardwood this Sunday night as the Tulsa Golden Hurricane (5-2) face the struggling Oklahoma State Cowboys (3-5).
The Cowboys are 7-point home favorites in the college basketball odds, while the total resides at 143.5.
Oklahoma State head coach Mike Boynton will need to right the ship quickly and will hope to catch a few breaks, as his team ranks dead-last (362nd) in KenPom’s luck metric so far this season.
Will the Cowboys get back on track this Sunday against a beatable opponent? Check out our free college basketball picks and predictions for Tulsa vs. Oklahoma State on Sunday, December 10 to find out.
Tulsa vs Oklahoma State best odds
Tulsa vs Oklahoma State picks and predictions
There’s a lot of tension within this Oklahoma State Cowboys basketball program as Mike Boynton’s seventh year in charge has not gotten off to an auspicious start. The Cowboys have dropped five of their eight games, including losses to schools from non-power conferences like Abilene Christian, St. Bonaventure, and Southern Illinois.
Boynton gave voice to that frustration this week, telling reporters, “I’ve got to coach better…The process word is nasty. No one cares. It’s Year 7, they want results, and they want them now. And they want them every time we step on the court.”
There was always going to be a learning curve for a roster that features two Top-50 recruits among its five true freshmen. Boynton’s squad will need to begin showing proof of concept on Sunday to avoid another loss, this time to a capable Tulsa Golden Hurricane team that has already won as many games as it did last year (five).
Second-year head coach Eric Konkol brought in a whopping 11 new players via the portal, including three players averaging double-figures: PJ Haggerty (16.3 ppg), Cobe Williams (13.7), and Isaiah Barnes (10.3). A trio of freshmen have also contributed in the scoring department — Jared Garcia (10.6), Tyshawn Archie (8.4), and Matthew Reed (5.9).
Although Tulsa has already rattled off five wins, they’ve come against a very manageable schedule. Three of those wins occurred against opponents ranked outside the Top 325 in KenPom, and it lost both games played outside of its home court.
The Hurricane have managed 79.6 ppg, but they haven’t done anything very efficiently on the offensive end of the court and ranks just 254th in KenPom’s adjusted offensive efficiency. It will be a tough ask to repeat that success against a Cowboys defense that has surrendered more than 70 points just one time this season — to No. 10 Creighton.
You can sense the urgency here for Boynton and his Cowboys, and I like this opportunity to buy low on them while selling high on the Hurricane after a few wins against poor competition. The Cowboys are the better team and can show that if the ball bounces in their favor a few times.
Give me Oklahoma State to get back on track on Sunday.
My best bet: Oklahoma State -6.5 (-115 at BetMGM)
Tulsa vs Oklahoma State same-game parlay
Oklahoma State -7
Javon Small Over 16.5 points
Eric Dailey Jr. Over 17.5 points + rebounds + assists
Here’s a three-leg SGP chock-full of Oklahoma State plays — it features the Cowboys ATS and two player prop Overs. The first prop that I will add is leading scorer Javon Small to exceed his points prop of 16.5.
Small is averaging 17 ppg as the clear lead guard, chucking up 12 field goal attempts per game. He’s a sharpshooter who converts 42.1% of his 3-point attempts on high volume (5.4 attempts per game) and is absolutely money at the line, cashing 93.1% of his free throws. He’s scored at least 24 points in three of his last five games, and this is a pace-up spot against a Tulsa team that likes to run-and-gun, so he has a great opportunity to cash this Over.
The second player whom I believe will benefit from this pace-up spot — as Tulsa ranks 41st in KenPom’s adjusted tempo metrics — is freshman Eric Dailey Jr.
Dailey is second on the team in scoring (11.2 ppg) and rebounding (6.0) while tying for first in assists (2.4). He’s a do-it-all player and should feast against a fast-paced Tulsa team allowing nearly 70 ppg and 38.1 rebounds per game (300th nationally).
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Tulsa vs Oklahoma State spread and Over/Under analysis
After bleeding money for supporters last year in an utterly futile campaign, Tulsa has been profitable so far this year at 4-2-1 ATS. I will point out that all four covers came at home, while both losses came away from its home court.
Oklahoma State is just 2-6 ATS this season, so playing them against the spread here required a leap of faith. Personally, I’m willing to take that leap as Tulsa was just 5-25 a season ago, we have little proof of concept for this coach, and the advanced analytics aren’t buying its hot start against an easy schedule.
The total ranges from 143.5 to 144.5, depending on the book. It’s been on an upward trend since opening at 141.5, so it’s evident that there was some love in the market for the Over at the opening price.
The only thing Tulsa does efficiently on offense is get to the free throw line, ranking fourth nationally in free-throw attempts per game (28.4) while converting 20.6 of them per game (sixth). The Cowboys are typically sound defensively under Boynton and can realistically expect to tighten the clamps on this offense as long as it avoids fouls.
The Cowboys can cover the spread in any style of game, but they would prefer to keep things low-scoring while preventing Tulsa from getting out and running. Therefore, since I’m on Oklahoma State against the spread, I’m inclined to believe that it has success slowing Tulsa down and therefore lean toward the Under.
Tulsa vs Oklahoma State betting trend to know
Tulsa is 0-2 ATS in its two games played away from home this season, and is 0-6 ATS in its last six games played on a Sunday. Find more college basketball betting trends for Tulsa vs. Oklahoma State.
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Tulsa vs Oklahoma State game info
|Paycom Center, Oklahoma City, OK
|Sunday, December 10, 2023
|6:30 p.m. ET
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