Texas at Cincinnati Preview

Saturday's 71-60 road win over No. 12 BYU marked Cincinnati's highest-ranked win since beating No. 12 Houston in the 2019 American Athletic Conference title game and the highest-ranked road win since beating No. 11 Wichita State in March 2018.

Wes Miller and his team had very little time to celebrate with a short turn around with No. 25 Texas (11-3 0-1) visiting Fifth Third Arena on Tuesday night.

(Photo: Scott Wachter/USA Today)

The Longhorns visit the Queen City for the first time ever as Cincinnati hosts a Big 12 home game for the first time in program history. 

Rodney Terry's squad is coming off of an 11 point loss to Texas Tech, 78-67, with their other two losses coming to #11 Marquette (86-65) and #4 Connecticut (81-71).

Key Stats and Numbers:

- The Longhorns average 78.3 points per game (97th nationally) while shooting 48.1 percent from the field. Texas has a 54.2 effective field goal percentage and enter with the 40th best adjusted offensive efficiency. 

- BYU entered their game against Cincinnati as the nation's leader in scoring (90.4 ppg) and rebounding (+13.8). A big reason for Cincinnati limiting BYU to a season low 60 points, was the Bearcats plus-9 advantage on the glass. UC is currently second in the country in rebounds per game (40.8) while Texas ranks 132nd with 34 rebounds per game. 

- Cincinnati is currently 24th in the NET rankings and 27th in the Kenpom rankings. Texas is 0-3 against teams inside the top 30 and have lost by an average of 14 points. 

- Texas' strength is their shot blocking ability. Their 5.7 blocks per game is good for 11th in the country and tops in the Big 12.

Players to watch

6'0 Graduate Senior G Max Abmas ( 17.2 ppg, 2.9 rpg, 4.4 apg)

Abmas is the engine that makes the Texas offense run. An efficient scorer (45.7 FG%) and 3-point shooter (39.6 3 FG%), Abmas can beat you in multiple ways depending on how you try to defend him.

The Oral Roberts transfer is the NCAA Division I active career scoring leader (2,562 points) and career scoring average leader (20.8 ppg). Abmas has scored in double figures in every game this season and will make you pay if you put him on the free throw line (91.2 FT%)

6'0 Junior G Tyrese Hunter (13.2 ppg, 2.8 rpg, 4.4 apg)

Hunter scored 20 points in the loss to Texas Tech and has scored 20 or more in the Longhorns past two games that he has played. He has been efficient from the field (49.2 FG%) but has been on and off from the 3-point range (33.3%).

Hunter was voted Big 12 Freshman of the Year during his freshman year at Iowa State.

6'8 Soph F Dillon Mitchell (11.4 ppg, 9.4 rpg, 1.9 apg)

Mitchell led the team in field goal percentage last season as a freshman (63.6%) and is leading the team this season as well at 59.6%. Mitchell isn't your typical wing in the Big 12 as he doesn't attempt many 3-pointers and has yet to connect on one this season, but is extremely effective around the rim at both ends of the floor.

6'9 Graduate Senior F Dylan Disu (11 ppg, 3 rpg, 1.4 bpg)

Disu missed the first 9 games of the season and has seen his shooting numbers drop from 62.5 percent to 46.3 percent this season. Small sample size, but he has connected on 6-of-9 attempts from 3-point range so he that aspect of his game has to at least be in the scouting report. 

The most interesting thing about Disu is him finishing 9-for-9 from the free throw line against LSU and then not attempting a free throw the next three games. 

6'11 Graduate Senior F Kadin Shedrik (11 ppg, 4.3 rpg, 1.5 bpg)

After spending three seasons at Virginia, Shedrick elected to transfer to Texas this season. The big man has seen his scoring numbers increase from 6.5 ppg to 11 ppg with the Longhorns. He is connecting on 58.3 percent of his field goal attempts but has been up and down as far as production. He was held to just 2 points on 1-of-7 shooting in the loss to Texas Tech, 

Bench Players

Rodney Terry shortened his rotation to just 7 guys in the loss to Texas Tech. 

6'5 Senior G Ithiel Horton averages 8.1 ppg, and is shooting 40.4% from the field and 38% from beyond the 3-point arc, but was limited to zero points in 9 minutes against the Red Raiders. 

6'6 sixth year senior Brock Cunninham came off the bench against Texas Tech as well but was limited to zero points in 32 minutes. Averaging 5.4 ppg, 5.2 rpg, Cunningham has been limited to zero points twice in the past three games for Texas. 

Keys to the game:

Texas Tech won in Austin by running efficient offense and defending the paint. Texas is shooting 36.4 percent from 3-point range but haven't shown the ability to consistently beat teams from outside with multiple shooters. Their two leads guards, Abmas and Hunter, are on the smaller side so it will be interesting to see how that plays in to Wes Miller's game plan with Texas having the biggest front court that the Bearcats will see this season. 

Get off to a hot start, get the home crowd behind you, and see what happens from there. Vegas likes Cincinnati -4.5.


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