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Wisconsin-Milwaukee Preview

NCAA Basketball: UW-Milwaukee at Wisconsin Journal Sentinel-USA TODAY NETWORK

Kansas takes on Milwaukee in what is probably their easiest game remaining on the schedule. The Panthers have played just one top-150 team and have defeated just two teams ranked 250th or better.

They’re having some issues scoring, with the Panthers scoring over a point per trip just twice against Division 1 competition. They’re shooting just 43 percent inside the arc and 32.5 percent outside of it. They've done a decent job on the glass and getting to the free throw line, but it’s tough to care too much when their shooting numbers are that bad.

Defensively, Milwaukee has been a decent 2-point defense, limiting teams to just 45 percent or so inside the arc. They haven’t faced Udoka Azubuike yet, however. They also commit a ton of fouls, ranking 347th nationally in defensive free throw rate, so this may be a game where Kansas lives at the line a bit.

Players to Watch

Te’Jon Lucas, 6-2 junior guard

Lucas missed the previous game against Drake, so he may not be in tonight, but if he is he is Milwaukee’s best player, shooting 38.5 percent from beyond the arc, leading the team in assist rate and steal rate, and ranking up there with the nation’s best at drawing fouls.

DeAndre Abram, 6-8 senior forward

Abram is shooting 38.5 percent from three as well this year on 39 attempts, and is the latest in seemingly a long line of stretch four types the Jayhawks have had to deal with this year. He’s not a great passer, however, and he is turnover prone, so Kansas should be able to handle him relatively easily if they can stick to him on the perimeter.

Amir Allen, 6-8 junior forward

Allen plays inside a lot more than you’d expect a 6-8 guy to play, and he’s been a decent interior defender as well as a very efficient scorer inside the arc. My best guess is KU’s offensive gameplan will be to get it to Azubuike early and often if Allen is on him, both to rack up some fouls as well as tire him out on the other end.

The Pick

The spread is 24.5, so it comes down to whether you think Bill Self will get the walk ons in early and how well Kansas plays when they get out to a big lead tonight. I personally think they should cover given the matchup, but 25 is a lot of points. I’ll say they barely miss the cover, but still win handily, 83-60.

Record ATS: 2-5