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Western Kentucky Hilltoppers vs. Kansas Jayhawks Gambling Prediction & CBB Preview

Hilltoppers vs Jayhawks East Region Spread/Handicapping

I was a little surprised that Kansas received the #1 seed but their resume passes the test. Another season, another regular season title (shared) and conference tournament title.

NCAA Tournament – South Bracket
#1 Kansas Jayhawks (29-5) vs #16 Western Kentucky Hilltoppers (20-15)
Friday March 22
Sprint Center – Kansas City, MO
Moneyline: No ML currently listed at SportsBettingOnline.ag
Spread: Kansas -20.5
O/U: 133.5

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There were a couple of real head scratchers along the way, like losing to TCU, but this team has won 10 of 11 since a three game losing streak in the middle of the season.

They also grabbed 5 wins against tournament teams in the non-conference.

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Kansas guard Ben McLemore is one of the best players in the country. He led the Jayhawks with 16ppg but has the kind of talent that he could have led the nation – he just needs to be more aggressive.

After McLemore KU has a number of good offensive options: inside with Jeff Withey and on the perimeter with Travis Releford and Elijah Johnson. Johnson could wind up being the key as he directs the attack.

Since coach Bill Self took over the program Kansas has has a lot of success including making it to last year’s title game. They were 3-3 ATS in last year’s tourney and were a good not great 19-14 ATS this season.

This team has covered in their last 10 victories and another win and cover is expected.

Western Kentucky

The Hilltoppers are no strangers to the Big Dance but they were far from the best team in the Sun Belt this season. They were fourth in their own division but rattled off 4 victories in the conference tourney to secure the automatic bid. [ad-6571516]

Without those wins this was barely a .500 team so don’t expect them to win a game the way they have the last three times they have been invited to the party.

Against a team like Kansas WKU is likely to get eaten up inside. They just don’t have a lot of length even though they are alright guarding the rim with more than one player averaging a block a game.

I think they are going to have to get into an up and down game which is a tough blueprint because they just don’t have the shooters for it.

There is a reason this team is a #16, previous incarnations have had better talent.

The ATS numbers don’t paint any prettier a picture. They were 17-17 against the number this season but just 5-13 against winning teams.

Kansas will easily be the best team they have played and this is the biggest number of the year – the second biggest was a plus 17.5 against VCU, a game they lost by 32.

Spread Pick: Kansas -20.5
O/U Pick: Over
Score Prediction: Kansas 83 – Western Kentucky 60


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About The Wiesguy

The Wiesguy is a newcomer to the handicapping scene. Hailing from Toronto, Canada he is always sweet on the underdogs and you can often find his thoughts, musings and picks at moneydogs.blogspot.com.