It’s the marquee matchup of the Big 12-SEC Challenge (and the whole weekend!), as the Kentucky Wildcats come to Allen Fieldhouse to face the Kansas Jayhawks. College Gameday is in town, and it was nice to hear all the accolades piled on both of these teams (but mainly the good guys) in the morning show today.
However, we are down to business tonight, and Kansas is looking to get one game closer in the all-time wins race. Will they be able to pull it off?
Take a look at what our staff thinks, and then leave your own prediction in the comments below!
Kyle_Davis21: Kansas has won so many close games of late that I would not be surprised if they wound up on the wrong side of a close contest against a really good team if no other reason that because these things tend to happen when it’s 18-22 (or 25 for JCL) year olds playing basketball. But the questionable health of TyTy Washington is a huge factor in how strong Kentucky plays. Oscar Tshiebwe is Kentucky’s star, but this team is dependent on the play of Washington and Sahvir Wheeler. It’s also just tough to pick against KU in Allen Fieldhouse with College Gameday in town. I’ll say the Jayhawks’ close-game win streak continues. Kansas 82, Kentucky 79
dnoll5: I’m also taking Kansas but don’t really have a lot of confidence in that pick. We’ve seen Tshiebwe and David McCormack on the floor together many times, and I’m not so thrilled about that matchup today, so I’m picking Jalen Wilson as a guy who will step up for KU. More minutes for Remy Martin after an extended break could be key too. Kansas 80, Kentucky 79.
Brendan: Yeah, the Tshiebwe matchup is obviously a huge concern, but I’m also in agreement that I think this could be a big opportunity for Wilson. Some extra help on the glass, a typical Agbaji game and maybe a return to more efficient shooting for Braun should be enough. Kansas 83, Kentucky 80
Andy Mitts: This is such a hard one to predict, because the outcome is entirely dependent on which team is able to limit the other’s NPOY candidate. Tshiebwe is going to get his, but the hope is that David can get somewhat close in total rebound numbers and keep him from easy buckets. Kentucky is going to be able to slow down Ochai with the defense of Washington and Wheeler, but the health of Washington, and the ability of Ochai to open things up for the other perimeter guys (and them to actually knock down shots) will ultimately be what decides the game. I think Kentucky has more unknowns, and given what we’ve seen from McCormack and secret weapon KJ Adams, I think the Jayhawks have enough to pull off the win. However, if you are looking for an easy game, this is yet another one that is not for you. Kansas 92, Kentucky 90 (OT).