March Madness 2017 Picks: UCLA vs. Kentucky South Region, Sweet 16 Round

Lonzo Ball

Doug Upstone

Wednesday, March 22, 2017 8:30 PM GMT

This is a rematch from an early December game, which broke the aura of Kentucky and brought back UCLA into the limelight and this should be great game to see how far both teams have come.

UCLA vs. Kentucky

South Region, Sweet 16 Round

Friday, March 24th, 9:39 pm E.T.

 

UCLA Breakdown

 The Bruins offense could hardly be any more effective than what it has been in the last two games, shooting over 50 percent on each occasion and committing a grand total of NINE turnovers in 80 minutes of basketball. The other notable aspect has been the improved defense, which is still not elite, but does enough to bother the opposing team and more importantly to those studying the college basketball odds, UCLA (31-4, 17-18 ATS) is putting in the effort, which is something we did not always see from them. For the Bruins to advance to Elite 8, they have to continue to protect the ball, have a statistical edge in rebounds and of course play defense to their abilities.

 

Kentucky Breakdown

Kentucky (31-5, 16-18-1 ATS) has two potential positive coming into what is worthy of a Final 4 tilt. The Wildcats have the revenge angle and is finally playing a team that loves to run like they do. Since SEC play began, every opposing team has gone to great measures to limit Kentucky from playing at full throttle and running up and down the court. Coach John Calipari's 'Cats will be able to finally go all out, but faces a team who are actually even better at playing all 94 feet than they are. For the Wildcats to win as one-point underdogs, they will need a fourth scorer besides Malik Monk, De'Aaron Fox and Edrice Adebayo. It could be Isaiah Briscoe or Derek Willis, but one of these two will have to chip in 15 or more points for the Wildcats to win.

What to Watch For: As stated, too bad this is in the Sweet 16, as this encounter is worthy of being played later in the tournament. Nonetheless, this is where it falls and for  college basketball picks I prefer UCLA who has shown more overall maturity and offensive diversification and say they win by five points or less.