Big 12 conference play is officially here, as the Kansas Jayhawks host the West Virginia Mountaineers in what might be one of the biggest games of the season. With WVU coming off a huge win over Ohio State last week, this ESPN+ tilt is suddenly a Top 20 matchup. Will this game live up to the hype?
Take a look at what our staff thinks below, and then give your own prediction in the comments.
dnoll5: I’m going to go ahead and say that the environment at Allen Fieldhouse will be pretty good for the game on Saturday. KU hasn’t played in the old barn since December 10, and it’ll be rocking. KU’s guard play (as mentioned in this site’s preview of the game) appears to give KU an advantage and as long a Press Virginia (aka Press and I’ll grope you and I’ll dare the referees to call a foul on every possession because I know they won’t so we actually get 20 or more fouls per half) doesn’t take hold, KU will win. Kansas 77, WVU 64.
David: I see this as a really close, rock fight type of game. I expect some turnovers from KU, and some bad shooting from West Virginia. In the end, I say the Jayhawks make a few big shots down the stretch and scratch out a win. Kansas 68, West Virginia 65
Fizzle406: WVU has got a good team this year but there is no scenario where I pick against Bill Self in Allen Fieldhouse. I think Kansas loses in the return game but they got this one. Kansas 76, WVU 67
Kyle_Davis21: I’m glad this game is taking place in AFH and not Morgantown to kick off Big 12 play. To dnoll5’s point, it’s been a while since the home fans have had the opportunity to gather and make life difficult for an opponent. WVU beating Ohio State will only ramp that up more. WVU should be competitive, but Kansas gets it done at home with Dotson bouncing back from a couple of rough outings. Kansas 73, West Virginia 67
Mike.Plank: It has been a while since KU had a home game, but the second semester hasn’t started yet, right? Since it will be up to the “wine and cheese” crowd to get behind the Jayhawks this afternoon, I’m not as confident in the home court advantage. Fortunately, we have an excellent basketball writer who predicted a rather comfortable Kansas win regardless, plus, I don’t disagree with anything anyone has said yet. It may be ugly for stretches, but Kansas should pull this one out. Kansas 78, West Virginia 65.
Andy Mitts: Fetch and I talked about this on the podcast, and he doubled down in the preview of this game. West Virginia just doesn’t match up well against the Jayhawks. This is a real-life example of “Anything You Can Do”, since Kansas is stronger in basically everything that West Virginia counts as a strength. I expect the game to be fairly close until at least the last 5 minutes, but ultimately the size advantage of Kansas will win out. Kansas 77, West Virginia 63