Northern Kentucky vs. Kentucky Pick
Will No. 2 Kentucky have any struggles when it faces in-state foe, Northern Kentucky, tonight at 9:40PM ET in the NCAA Tournament?
According to oddsmakers at BetDSI, Kentucky is the clear favorite today, as the Wildcats are getting odds of -20 points against Northern Kentucky. The over/under total for the game is listed at 153 points. These two last met in 2013 with Kentucky getting a 93-63 victory. This game will take part in the South Region and air on CBS from Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, Indiana
Kentucky is currently on an 11-game win streak to get to 29-5 on the season. The Wildcats won the SEC regular-season and tournament titles and are playing their best basketball right now. UK has covered in four of its last six games to move to 18-16 against the spread on the season. Kentucky averages 85.9 points per game on offense this season while allowing just 71.2 on defense. Malik Monk is leading the team with 20.4 points per game while De’Aaron Fox is adding 16.1 points and 4.8 assists per contest.
Northern Kentucky comes in as a winner of six straight. The Norse finished third in the Horizon League but went on to win the conference tournament to get this bid. They sit at 24-10 on the season and 20-9-1 against the spread. NKU averages 74.9 points per game on offense while allowing 71.8 on defense. Drew McDonald has led the team with 16.4 points and 7.7 rebounds per game while Lavone Holland II adds 14.3 points per game.
Kentucky should win here but I think the Wildcats will get a little push back. The Wildcats haven’t been the best at covering big spreads and have failed to cover in their last two as a 20-point favorite or greater. The Horizon League is a respectable conference, so Northern Kentucky has been tested. The Norse have only lost by 20 points or more once this season as well, so they know how to keep things within reason, even against better competition.
MARCH MADNESS PREDICTION: NORTHERN KENTUCKY +20