After a couple of recent stumbles, Texas A&M looks to bounce back against one of the top teams in the country in Houston. Can the Cougars stay unbeaten?
TV schedule: Saturday, December 16th, 2:30 pm ET, ESPN2
Arena: Toyota Center in Houston, Texas
After starting the season out 5-0 and ranked in the top 15 overall, Texas A&M (7-3) has lost 3 of its last 5 games. The latest came last weekend, losing at home to Memphis, 81-75. Manny Obaseki had a career-high 21 pts off the bench to keep them in the game but none of the starters were in double figures.
That included Wade Taylor IV, who finished with 9 pts, 8 asts, and 4 stls in the loss. It was the rare off night for the junior star, who is still averaging 17.1 ppg and 4.9 apg on the season. The team also normally relies on Henry Coleman and Tyrece Radford, both of whom are also double-digit contributors.
Their opponent is Houston (10-0), who currently is one of seven unbeaten teams in college basketball. The Big 12 program is coming off a dominant 89-55 win over Jackson State, led by 25 pts from Emanuel Sharp and 21 pts from LJ Cryer. Those are the top two scorers for the Cougars on the season, led by Cryer at 17.8 ppg on 40% 3Pt shooting on nine attempts a game.
Both Texas A&M and Houston are teams that leads by its defenses and play a physical style. So points may be hard to come by on Saturday. And even though they’re on the road, look for the Aggies to have a little more urgency to end its recent skid.
The Cougars haven’t played a weak schedule but even though they’re now unranked, Texas A&M is the best team the home favorites will have played to date. It’ll be a hard-fought battle for 40 minutes but in the end, look for Houston to still not have a loss.
Prediction: Houston 68, Texas A&M 64