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Monday, December 20, 2004
 
Next Up - Texas Tech

Teams: Texas Tech Red Raiders vs. Iowa Hawkeyes
Site: United Center, Chicago
Time: 6:05 CST, Tuesday
TV: ESPN2

Numbers current through games of 12/18/04.
National ranking in parentheses, when available.
Stats Glossary

...............................Texas Tech................Iowa
Record......................5-2............................9-1
Pts/G........................87.0 (5)....................83.1 (20)
Pts All/G...................63.6..........................71.6
Poss/G...................75.1 (18)...................73.2 (32)
Off Efficiency.........115.8 (25).................113.5 (40)
Def Efficiency............84.7.........................97.8
FG%......................0.472 (72)................0.485 (45)
3FG%....................0.410 (30)................0.429 (14)
adjFG%.................0.507 (136)..............0.554 (38)
FT%......................0.770 (12)................0.688 (139)
FTA/FGA..............0.347 (183)...............0.442 (43)
3PA/FGA..............0.175 (328)...............0.325 (169)
A/TO.......................1.53 (5)......................1.27 (23)
TO/100 poss........16.73 (7)....................20.22 (63)
Pomeroy Rank...........36...............................24
Sagarin Rank.............32...............................20

This is a matchup that I've been excited about for awhile. It features two teams that use a lot of possessions and use them well, which results in them being two of the highest scoring teams in the country. They achieve their offensive efficiency in different ways. Iowa is a very good three-point shooting team - their effectiveness from long range allows them to average more points per possession than teams whose offenses are focused more inside. Texas Tech isn't as effective at shooting the ball from the field (see the very average adjFG%), but they make up for it by rarely turning the ball over, and by having one of the country's best free throw percentages . Part of that low adjFG% is the fact that their three point attempts per field goal attempt (3PA/FGA) is the fourth lowest such ratio in the country. Only two Tech players are even averaging 2 three point attempts per game.

Texas Tech has shown they can beat up the cupcakes, but has done little against tougher opponents. They lost by six to Ohio State last week, and lost by 15 at Texas Christian. Both Tech and Iowa have played Centenary, with TT beating them by 52, and Iowa beating them by 35.

Tech's team looks quite balanced - five players average double figure scoring, and looks fairly deep - seven players average at least 15 mpg, and 3 more are near 10 mpg.

A victory would make Iowa the Big Ten's second 10 win team, as Illinois got there Sunday.

The media focus will no doubt be the rematch of Coach Alford and his former coach Bob Knight. Don't let that distract you from what should otherwise be a great game between two evenly-matched teams.

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