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NCAA Tournament 2021 – #2 Houston Cougars (28-3) vs #1 Baylor Bears (26-2)

American Athletic Conference vs Big 12

Houston vs Baylor pickOur Houston vs Baylor pick observes that the Bears are the favorite in the matchup. You can find Baylor at -5.0 (-101). The best spread for the underdog Cougars is +5.5 (-115). Houston comes to the 2021 NCAAM Tournament Final Four by beating #12 Oregon State in their Elite Eight matchup. The final score in that game was 67-61. In the tournament, the Cougars also beat the #16 Hartford Hawks 79-55, the #9 Wisconsin Badgers 76-63, and the #11 Syracuse Orange 62-46. In their Elite Eight contest, the Baylor Bears dispatched the #3 Arkansas Razorbacks 81-72. In March Madness 2021, the Bears also took down the #16 Hartford Hawks 79-55, the #9 Wisconsin Badgers 76-63, and the #5 Villanova Wildcats 62-51.

The Cougars and Bears will meet on Saturday, April 3 at 5:14 pm ET. Tipoff will be at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, IN. Also, see other Final Four pick for Saturday as the #11 UCLA Bruins take on the #1 Gonzaga Bulldogs at 8:34 pm ET. That game will also tip off at Lucas Oil Stadium.

Houston vs Baylor Pick – Stats

Although Houston has its work cut out for them in this contest, they do possess a statistical edge in certain areas, including rebounds (40.9 to 36.0) and blocked shots (4.6 to 3.8). They are also more successful from the foul line, as the Cougars are completing 74.1% of their attempts. At the same time, Baylor is completing 69.7% of their free throws.

In just about all other statistical categories, the Bears are dominant. Baylor top Houston in average points scored (83.0 PPG to 76.6 PPG), field-goal percentage (48.6% to 43.7%), and three-point success rate (41.8% to 36.1%). The Bears also have the lead in assists (16.6 APG to 14.1 APG) and steals (9.0 SPG to 8.1 SPG).

Key Players

In the backcourt, the Cougars are replete with double-digit point-makers. Guard Quentin Grimes leads all scorers with 18.0 PPG. In addition, he is grabbing 6.0 RPG. Also, in the backcourt, Marcus Sasser is averaging 13.3 PPG and DeJon Jarreau 10.8. Playmaker Jarreau is dishing off 4.3 APG and 5.4 RPG. In the paint, the Cougars rely on forward Justin Gorham. He’s good for 8.6 PPG and completing 51% of his field-goal attempts. He’s also taking in 8.6 RPG.

Baylor is loaded with backcourt players who can knock down threes at a rate of 39 percent or better. From downtown, five Bear guards are sharpshooters. Jared Butler leads the group with 16.6 PPG. He’s also averaging 4.7 APG. Davion Mitchell, who is averaging 5.3 APG, is scoring 14.1 PPG. Mitchell is a 52.2% field-goal shooter. Also, in the backcourt, MaCio Teague is scoring 15.7 PPG. Also, he’s taking in 4.1 RPG. Jonathan Tchamwa Tchatchoua is the go-to guy under the rim. He’s averaging 6.2 PPG and 5.0 RPG.

Houston vs Baylor Pick – Final Thoughts

Our Houston vs Baylor pick certainly acknowledges the Cougars’ ability on both ends of the court. They can score and defend. However, Baylor is the deeper team. Their scoring chops are highly refined. In this Final Four matchup, we do like the Baylor Bears ar -5.0 (-101).

#2 Houston Cougars vs #1 Baylor Bears

Baylor Bears at -5.0 (-101)


Paul has been writing about sports betting and sports for more than a decade, offering picks on the NFL, MLB, NHL, and NBA, as well as on college sports and European football. He's written thousands of season and post-season previews, innumerable articles on sports betting strategies, and various books on sports and sports betting.

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