Big 12 Betting Odds Preview
Since 2006 the Kansas Jayhawks have won six of the last eight Big 12 championships. The winner of the two that they didn’t win, the Missouri Tigers, now reside in the SEC. The Big 12 is Kansas’ conference for the taking, and the Jayhawks enter the season as -125 chalk at 5Dimes to finish up with the title.
Kansas lost all five of its starters this offseason, but still enters the season ranked in the top five nationally due to another sensational recruiting class. That class is led by Andrew Wiggins, the 6’8” freshman guard that was the crown jewel of the 2013 recruiting class. Wiggins has NBA teams chomping at the bit already, and should look like a man against boys in his single year of college ball.
Bettors looking for experience over potential need look no further than the Oklahoma State Cowboys, who are going off at +250 to win the Big 12 championship at 5Dimes. The Cowboys return just about everyone from last year’s 24-win team including defending Big 12 player of the year Marcus Smart, who averaged 15.4 points per game as a freshman. Oklahoma State figures to be Kansas’ toughest competition.
But while Kansas and Oklahoma State make their living on the wings, the Baylor Bears (+500) do so with power in the front court. Isaiah Austin and Cory Jefferson lead one of the strongest and deepest front courts in the country, a unit that should create matchup problems inside for opposing teams all season long.
The hopes of the Iowa State Cyclones (+800) rest heavily on the health of Melvin Ejim. Ejim will miss at least a month with a knee injury, but if he can return 100% healthy in time for conference play and gel well with newcomers DeAndre Kane and Matt Thomas the Cyclones could end up being competitive.
West Virginia (+1000), Oklahoma (+1000), and Kansas State (+1200) all lost a lot of scoring talent this offseason without gaining clear replacements, likely setting the stage for a battle in the middle of the pack.
Rounding out the Big 12 (with odds provided by 5Dimes):
Texas Tech (+5000)