Buffalo Bulls vs Texas Tech Red Raiders: Predictions, Odds and Roster Notes

How to Watch

Where: Bank of Oklahoma Center in Tulsa, OK, USA.

When: Sunday, March 24th at 6:10pm EST.

How (TV/Radio): TNT; March Madness Live Stream on ncaa.com

Buffalo Bulls

Head Coach: Nate Oats {Overall: 32-3, .914 W-L% | Conference: 16-2, 1st in MAC East}

In what has been the greatest season in school history, the Buffalo Bulls will look to reach their first ever Sweet 16. Nate Oats’ team has taken the nation by storm, as their high scoring offense ranks fourth in the nation, averaging 85.1 points per game. The Bulls are not one-dimensional, however, as they are also the fourth best rebounding team in America.

Buffalo is coming off a savoury 91-74 win on Friday against their former head coach, Bobby Hurley, and the Arizona State Sun Devils. The Bulls were fuelled on offense by their trio of senior leaders, as Nick Perkins and Jeremy Harris each had double-doubles with 21 points and 10 rebounds, while C.J. Massinburg added 18 points.

Texas Tech Red Raiders

Head Coach: Chris Beard {Overall: 27-6, .818 W-L% | Conference: 14-4, T-1st in Big 12}

The Big 12 regular season co-champions come into this game in search of a second consecutive Sweet 16 berth, a feat which has never happened in Lubbock. The Red Raiders have been carried by their suffocating defense, which ranks third in the nation, allowing just 59.2 points per game.

Texas Tech managed to shut down a solid offensive attack in the previous round, taking down the Northern Kentucky Norse 72-57 on Friday. Big 12 Player of the Year, Jarrett Culver, handled the bulk of the scoring load with 29 points. Senior forward, Tariq Owens chipped in 12 points and blocked five shots in the victory.

Buffalo Roster Notes

There are no injuries or roster changes to report for Buffalo.

Texas Tech Roster Notes

Freshman forward Khavon Moore is out for the season with a knee injury suffered in high school, which he has been rehabbing all season.

Head-to-Head: Nick Perkins vs Tariq Owens

Nick Perkins

Power Forward | 6-8, 250lb (203cm, 113kg) | Milan HS | Ypsilanti, MI | Senior

14.5 PPG | 0.7 APG | 7.3 RPG | 0.5 SPG | 0.9 BPG | 1.7 TOV | .462 FG% | .369 3P%

Tariq Owens

Power Forward | 6-10, 205lb (208cm, 92kg) | Mount Zion Prep | Odenton, MD | Senior

8.9 PPG | 0.8 APG | 5.6 RPG | 0.5 SPG | 2.5 BPG | 1.1 TOV | .612 FG% | .222 3P%

The matchup to focus on in this game will be between two big men with contrasting styles of play. Each player’s skill set gives opposing coaches nightmares in terms of game planning, allowing their teammates to get into rhythm more easily.

It is not often that a mid major school like Buffalo has the luxury of the sixth man being their second leading scorer. Nonetheless, the Bulls are able to bring Nick Perkins off the bench, who is a nightmare matchup at 6-8 and 250 pounds. When he isn’t abusing opponents in the paint, the lefty has punished them from the perimeter. The Bulls will hope he can build on his performance against Arizona State, as the Michigan native has otherwise struggled against power conference opponents this year.

After playing his first three years of college ball at Tennessee and St. John’s, Tariq Owens is capping off his career with a chance at a deep tournament run. The slender rim protector has served as Texas Tech’s defensive anchor, as he has yet to have a game this year where he has not blocked a shot. In addition to his five block performance against North Kentucky last round, Owens also managed to block eight and six shots against Memphis and Incarnate Word, respectively, early in the season.

Buffalo vs Texas Tech Predictions and Odds

Texas Tech is listed as a 4 point favourite over Buffalo by oddsmakers, with the majority of sports books setting the over/under for the game at 146.