Texas basketball vs. UTEP: Prediction and odds for season opener

Chris Beard, Texas basketball Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports
Chris Beard, Texas basketball Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports /

The day of the regular season opener has arrived for head coach Chris Beard and No. 12 ranked Texas basketball. On Nov. 7, Texas will take on the UTEP Miners out of the Conference-USA to open up a season that has some big expectations for Beard’s squad.

Beard and the Longhorns finished up last season with a record of 22-12 (10-8 Big 12) following a loss in the Round of 32 at the hands of the three-seed Purdue Boilermakers. Texas did manage its first NCAA Tournament win since 2014, though, making last season at least a decent success for the program.

Meanwhile, UTEP finished up last season with a record of 20-14 (11-7 C-USA) after a second-round exit in The Basketball Classic postseason tournament. UTEP was a solid squad last season led by head coach Joe Golding and star guard Souley Boum.

But UTEP did experience some roster turnover during the offseason, losing its top scorer Boum to the NCAA Transfer Portal. In fact, less than half of UTEP’s starters from last season didn’t return to the team for this season.

Here’s a look at the betting odds and game prediction as Texas gets set to host UTEP at home at the shiny new Moody Center in Austin on Nov. 7, with the tipoff time set for 8 p.m. CT.

Texas basketball vs. UTEP: Odds for the regular season opener

Texas is a 22.5-point favorite over UTEP in this game, and the over/under is set at 129.5 points (per FanDuel).

Texas is heavily favored in the moneyline (-4500) over UTEP (+1600).

According to the ESPN Basketball Power Index, Texas has a 96.8 percent chance of beating UTEP.

This game is setting up to be one where Beard and the Longhorns can get some confidence and momentum rolling early in the season. Texas has an opportunity to get some of the new additions to the program, such as freshman forward Dillon Mitchell and sophomore guard Tyrese Hunter, acquainted with their new team.

3 bold predictions for Texas vs. UTEP. dark. Next

Texas should have an easy win to open up the regular season. And the Longhorns should also have an easy win in its second game of the season, which will come against the Houston Baptist Huskies at home on Nov. 10.

Final score prediction: Texas-76, UTEP-52