Cowboys Heavy Favorites Over Horned Frogs

Le'Bryan Nash vs. TCU during 2012-13 season.

On paper, the Big 12 basketball game Wednesday night at Gallagher-Iba Arena is a total mismatch. The ninth-ranked Oklahoma State Cowboys are more than 20-point favorites over the TCU Horned Frogs. But OSU head coach Travis Ford will remind his team what happened on Feb. 6, 2013 prior to the Cowboys walking on the court against the Horned Frogs,

A year ago, the Horned Frogs were 18-point underdogs when fifth-ranked Kansas made the trip with Fort Worth with a 19-2 record. TCU had yet to win a conference game in eight tries in its first year in playing in the Big 12. But head coach Trent Johnson's squad pulled off one of college basketball's most surprising upsets of the 2012-13 season with a 62-55 victory over the Jayhawks.

However, that TCU victory over KU is one of only two by the Horned Frogs in conference play during the last two seasons. The Horned Frogs are 2-19 since joining the Big 12 last season, and they are winless in 10 games on the road in conference play the last two seasons.

On the other hand, Oklahoma State is 15-6 in its last 21 conference games (an amazing 13 games better than TCU), including a 2-1 record in Big 12 contests this season. The Cowboys are 9-1 in conference games inside Gallagher-Iba Arena the past two seasons (8-1 a year ago and 1-0 this season).

There's no reason to believe the Cowboys, 14-2 overall, shouldn't be the heavy favorites over the Horned Frogs, 9-6.?

They swept both games against TCU last season, winning 63-45 in Gallagher-Iba Arena as Markel Brown and Marcus Smart combined for 28 points, eight rebounds and eight assists as the Cowboys out-rebounded the Horned Frogs by an amazing 40-17 margin. In the second game, Le'Bryan Nash scored a career-high 28 points and the Cowboys held TCU to 27.3 percent shooting from the field to capture a 64-47 victory in Fort Worth.

Ford hopes his Cowboys won't be overlooking the Horned Frogs, especially with Saturday's trip to Lawrence, Kan., to face the 15th-ranked Kansas Jayhawks in a nationally televised game (CBS) at Allen Fieldhouse.

Prediction: OSU 78, TCU 55

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