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Texas heads to Ft. Worth to face road test against frisky TCU

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Let’s see if having Gary Patterson on our side will help.

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NCAA Basketball: Oklahoma State at Texas Scott Wachter-USA TODAY Sports

Before the Texas Longhorns (14-5, 4-3) brace for a couple of tough weeks, they’ll travel to Fort Worth to play the erratic TCU Horned Frogs (13-3, 3-2).

Despite being unranked, the Horned Frogs sit ahead of Texas in the Big 12 standings, currently holding the fourth spot. After their conference opener against West Virginia was postponed, TCU lost to No. 1 Baylor, but their next three games were decided by three points or less. That includes wins over Kansas State and Oklahoma and also a loss on the road to Oklahoma State.

Head coach Jamie Dixon’s squad is recently coming off a thrashing road upset over No. 15 Iowa State and enter tonight’s contest with a bit of momentum.

The Horned Frogs boast the 15th-best defense per KenPom in terms of adjusted efficiency and allow just 60.7 points per game (18th nationally). Opponents shoot just above 40% from the floor (43rd nationally).

For Texas, tonight’s game against TCU is a precursor before five straight games against top 25 teams, including No. 5 Kansas and No. 4 Baylor.

After gritting out a home victory against Oklahoma State last Saturday, head coach Chris Beard and the Horns have to take care of business on the road before a grueling stretch. Texas is 0-3 against ranked teams this season and their only Quadrant 1 victory came against Kansas State, who wasn’t in the Quad 1 tier until their victory over the Longhorns last week.

Translation — with Texas possibly teetering on the bubble and yet to show any signs of beating the top teams in the Big 12, it’s vital to win games against fellow bubble teams.

Las Vegas is tired of losing money thanks to this Texas team and has adjusted the game line to reflect that, favoring the Horns by only 2.5 points. Texas is 8-11 against the spread this year, covering only 42 percent of the time. The Longhorns also boast five straight wins over the Horned Frogs in addition to victories in 22 of the last 27 games in the series.

How to Watch:

TV: ESPNU

Time: 8:00 p.m. Central

Radio: Texassports.com affiliates

Odds: The Longhorns are 2.5-point favorites over the Horned Frogs, according to DraftKings.

Odds/lines subject to change. T&Cs apply. See draftkings.com/sportsbook for details.