Last Updated Jan 31, 2023, 7:27 AM
Kansas vs. Kentucky Picks, Predictions, Odds
Sports Betting Expert
The defending national champion Kansas Jayhawks are in the middle of a three-game slide. Kansas has dropped three straight games against opponents in the rough and tumble Big 12, so the Jayhawks are more than happy to take part in the SEC/Big 12 Challenge this week.
Although they will be facing another blue blood in the Kentucky Wildcats, their opponent is having a down season and is currently a fringe tournament team.
On Saturday, January 28, 2023, the Kentucky Wildcats will welcome the Kansas Jayhawks to Rupp Arena in Lexington, Kentucky. Tipoff is scheduled for 8 p.m. ET on ESPN.
Kansas Jayhawks vs. Kentucky Wildcats Betting Prediction
The Kentucky Wildcats are just 1-5 against Quad 1 opponents so far this season. Kentucky was able to knock off Tennessee in Knoxville two weeks ago, but the Wildcats have lost to the other five top tier teams they have faced. In that win over the Volunteers, the Wildcats shot less than 40% from the floor, and they greatly benefited from getting to the free throw line 25 times.
As long as Kansas can keep Kentucky off the free throw line, the Jayhawks should be able to pick up another nice victory and snap a three-game losing streak.
Score Prediction: Kansas 74, Kentucky 69
Best Bet: Kansas +2.5
Kansas Jayhawks vs. Kentucky Wildcats Betting Odds
Kansas Jayhawks vs. Kentucky Wildcats Betting Resources
Date: Saturday, Jan. 28, 2023
TV-Time: ESPN, 8:00 p.m. ET
Venue: Rupp Arena
Location: Lexington, Kentucky
Big 12 Championship Odds
SEC Championship Odds
Kansas Jayhawks vs. Kentucky Wildcats Betting Stats
Straight Up (SU), Against the Spread (ATS), Over-Under (O/U)
Points Per Game (PPG), Opponents Points Per Game (OPPG)
Kansas Jayhawks Betting Analysis
We've made money betting against Kansas the last couple weeks, but the time has come to roll with the Jayhawks. The Big 12 is the toughest conference in the country, so this will be a little bit of a reprieve at a nice time for Bill Self and company.
Jalen Wilson is the second-rated player in the country according to Ken Pomeroy. Wilson played a pivotal role in last year's national championship, but this is now his team. He is averaging 21.4 PPG and 8.6 RPG, leading Kansas in both categories, and he is constantly asked to create late in the shot clock. That hurts his overall efficiency numbers, but there are few players in the country that are better with the ball in their hands.
Freshman Gradey Dick is the second-leading scorer with 14.9 PPG, and he has the potential to take over a game with his size and touch. Dick is a 6'8 guard, and he is averaging 5.2 RPG while knocking down 43.7% of his threes. Dajuan Harris Jr. is the other perimeter shooter to watch on Kansas, and he is hitting 41.7% from beyond the arc.
The main concern with Kansas is its lack of depth. When the starters are off the floor, this team is not nearly as efficient. Guards Joseph Yesufu and Bobby Pettiford Jr. are the reserves that have seen the most action, but neither one has played particularly well.
Kentucky Wildcats Betting Analysis
Reigning consensus National Player of the Year Oscar Tshiebwe is a little less efficient than he was last year with Kentucky. Tshiebwe is still one of the top players in the country, and he is the star of the Wildcats once more with 16.6 PPG and 13.9 RPG. He is knocking down 58.7% of his field goals, but his inability to stretch the floor with range does hurt the team the way the game is played today.
The other big man to watch is Jacob Toppin. The younger brother of former Naismith Award winner Obi Toppin hasn't been as dynamic as his brother, but he has carved out a niche for himself. Toppin is averaging 11.0 PPG and 6.6 RPG, but he is only making 44.1% of his field goals, and there isn't much talent in the frontcourt aside from Tshiebwe and Toppin.
Antonio Reeves and Cason Wallace are the two perimeter players to watch on Kentucky. Reeves is averaging 12.9 PPG and is hitting 39.7% of his threes, while Wallace is averaging 11.2 PPG and making 39.6% of his treys. Sahvir Wheeler is the primary distributor, averaging 5.8 APG, but he hasn't been the most effective shooter from the floor.