Back Kentucky -11.5 vs. Texas With NCAA Basketball Picks

Jeff Grant

Friday, December 5, 2014 2:23 PM GMT

Kentucky has dominated opponents with its two-platoon system, but expect the Harrison twins to play longer against Texas in a high-profile matchup Friday night. How can NCAA Basketball bettors use this to their advantage tonight?

Looking to Make History
Texas has held each of its first seven opponents to below 60 points and 37 percent shooting, which can’t be ignored when making your NCAA Basketball picks, but the program is 0-7 SU all-time against No. 1 teams in the country.

The Longhorns have seven players averaging at least 5.3 points through their first seven affairs, with senior Jonathan Holmes leading the way in scoring 12.7 points and grabbing 8.6 rebounds a contest.

Over the last two-plus seasons, the squad is 1-4 SU and 3-2 ATS as road underdogs of 9.5 to 12 points, with the OVER going 3-2 in those five opportunities.

 

Getting After It Defensively
The Kentucky Wildcats has won its first seven games by an average of 34.4 points, which is important to consider when looking over SBR's NCAA Basketball odds boards, as it has managed to hold opponents under 20 points in seven of 14 halves played to this point.  

The Wildcats lead the nation in rejections with 65 swats, and have blocked their opponents’ shots on 26.7 percent of their attempts.

It’s important to point out that the program is 4-1 SU and 2-3 ATS as home favorites of 9.5 to 12 points since the start of the 2012-13 campaign.

 

Missing Taylor
The Longhorns have played their last four games without the services of sophomore guard Isaiah Taylor, who was averaging 15.0 points and 3.0 rebounds before going down with a wrist injury that’ll keep him off the court until the end of the month.

Junior Javan Felix will have to play at a high level if Texas intends on covering the number as a double-digit road underdog, but he recorded just 10 points and four assists in 37 minutes of play in a 55-54 victory over Connecticut last Saturday.

 

Harrison Twins
The Wildcats have 10 players averaging between 15.3 and 22.0 minutes per game, with no one playing more than 26 minutes in a single contest, but I expect head coach John Calipari to change things a bit in this high-profile matchup.

Aaron and Andrew Harrison are combining to score 18.7 points through seven games of their sophomore campaign, but that number will increase due to the importance of perimeter play in a game that features two of the taller teams nationally.

 

Prediction
I’m going to recommend that readers back the Wildcats as one of their top NCAAB picks, as they’ve gone 6-2 ATS in their last eight games versus Big 12 Conference opponents.

NCAA Basketball Pick:  Kentucky Wildcats -11.5 at Pinnacle 

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