College basketball today: Oklahoma hosts Kansas, ACC battle with Clemson-Virginia leading Tuesday's games
Here is what you need to know in college basketball for Tuesday, Jan. 23:
Game of the night
Kansas at Oklahoma, 7 p.m, ET, ESPN: West Virginia’s loss Monday night at TCU could create even more distance between Kansas and the rest of the league. If the Sooners could knock off Kansas, there still may be hope for the others in the Big 12. To win this game, Trae Young will need help. He can’t take nearly 40 shots and he can’t turn the ball over nearly 10 times. Brady Manek has had moments where he has boarded well, so has Khadeem Lattin, but this will be all hands on deck for the Sooners. They are more than capable of knocking off Kansas. The rest of the Big 12 will be watching.
Contender/Pretender for ACC title
Clemson at Virginia, 7 p.m, ET, ACC Network: Expecting Clemson to beat Virginia in Charlottesville this season is asking a lot. But if the Tigers have visions of winning the ACC — something that wasn’t fathomable to the outside world in the preseason — they could use a road win at UVA. The Tigers are two games back of 7-0 Virginia, tied with Duke in the loss column and one game back of Louisville. Virginia will be stingy defensively and the Tigers are now without their second-leading scorer in Donte Grantham (14.2 ppg), who is done for the season after suffering a torn ACL against Notre Dame. Virginia has a daunting week, too, going to Duke Saturday.
Looking for a good showing
Providence at Villanova, 6:30 p.m., ET, FS1: The Friars have won four in a row, with wins over Xavier, Butler and Creighton — all likely NCAA tournament teams. There are ZERO expectations of a Friars’ road win against the No. 1 team in the country, but this could be as much a game where the Friars simply need to show they belong. And they should be able to do so — Providence has its mojo back at the right time in the conference season.
Don’t give up yet
Texas A&M at LSU, 9 p.m., ET, ESPNU: The Aggies have won two in a row after opening the SEC with five-straight losses. Their suspensions are over and if all is right, this team still has the talent to win the SEC tournament, the automatic qualifier and the rest of their conference games. They could lose them all, though. Nothing would surprise anyone at this point. LSU knocked off the Aggies in College Station on a Tremont Waters 3-pointer with one second left. This isn’t just about revenge, but rather the ability to create much-needed momentum.