Grab Kentucky vs. Texas In The SEC Basketball Tournament Championship

Doug Upstone

Sunday, March 13, 2016 4:05 PM GMT

As crazy and offbeat as this conference has been all year, it played according to the chalk to reach the title game. The SEC basketball tourny will break the tie in league records this season.

Texas A&M (26-7 SU) ended up with the top seed by virtue 79-77 OT thriller over Kentucky (25-8) on Feb.20th, which played a massive role in the Aggies regaining their confidence, after losing four in a row in the middle of the season.

What should we be looking for against the NCAA basketball odds boards Sunday afternoon?

 

The Numbers

Texas A&M
ATS Record - 14-11-3
Away Record - 9-6 and 6-7-2 ATS
Underdog Record - 2-2 and 2-2 ATS
No Days Rest - 2-1 and 2-1 ATS
Off a SU Win - 21-4 SU and 12-8-2 ATS

 

Kentucky
ATS Record - 17-16
Away Record - 8-8 and 7-9 ATS
Favorite Record - 25-7 and 17-15 ATS
No Days Rest - 2-0 and 2-0 ATS
Off a SU Win - 17-7 SU and 11-13 ATS

 

Game Scoop
Have to give Aggies coach Billy Kennedy credit, he surmised LSU as soft as melting butter and had is players go for jugular against the Tigers in a contest that was over by halftime. Kennedy will need the same sort of aggressiveness versus a far superior Kentucky club.

Texas A&M has to take characteristics from the first game and find ways to improve on others. The Aggies made nine three-balls, which ultimately was the difference in the contest. (Kentucky made four treys) They will require the same sort of marksmanship and have to win the rebound battle like last time when they were +5. This is extremely important because of the Wildcats ability to play volleyball on the offensive glass against various opponents.

The last meeting was a home game for Texas A&M and they cannot afford another dud performance from Danuel House, who was 2 for 9 from the field and registered only nine points. Lastly, if the Aggies go 14 for 24 from the charity stripe again, they will not be taking home a championship trophy.

John Calipari might not be everyone's flavor of choice, but the man can coach and is adaptable as they come. Each year he brings in five supposed All-American's and get them to not worry about the NBA (Ben Simmons, what were thinking!) and figures out the strengths and weaknesses of each group and molds them in the best manner.

This year's crop of big men are not in the mode of Antonio Davis, DeMarcus Cousins or Karl-Anthony Towns. While they might someday becomes those types of players, they are not ready for professional basketball. Calipari determined he has a great point guard in Tyler Ulis, but he had to slow him down and make him understand to be a facilitator along with scorer. The other key difference-maker is shooting star Jamal Murray, who can heat like a microwave in just seconds.

If Kentucky plays with the same passion they did in the second half again Georgia and finds the sometimes elusive third scorer, be it Alex Pythress or Isaiah Briscoe, they are tough to beat.

 

And the Winner Is....
Late Saturday night, Kentucky was released as 3.5-point favorite to be SEC champions yet again. Not one to be a waffler, I did choose Texas A&M to win it all, but I do have some concerns about seeing the Wildcats at their best and the Aggies at their finest.

I will stick with initial gut feeling for NCAA basketball picks and side with the Aggies because of veteran leadership and hope the Cats are just enough off their game.

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NCAA Basketball Picks: Texas AM +4
Best Line Offered: at BetOnline