Tread Lightly with Kentucky
Kentucky had a powerful 2018-19 effort, placing together a 30-7 record en route to an Elite Eight berth before falling to Auburn in overtime. No doubt head coach John Calipari will possess the Wildcats playing at a high degree, but he’ll need to enter the season with quite a different look. Four of Kentucky’s starting five are likely to graduate or be drafted in the NBA since Reid Travis is an old and P.J. Washington, Keldon Johnson and Tyler Herro will likely be moving pro.
All is not lost, however, as the Wildcats have done a good job recruiting for the upcoming season, procuring two 2019 McDonald’s All-Americans, shooting guard Tyrese Maxey and little forward Khalil Whitney. I anticipate sophomores Immanuel Quickley and E.J. Montgomery to lead the fee and will work well with the incoming freshmen. With their brand new look, I would be hesitant to put a bet on this club in +500 at this stage.
Kansas May be Well-Balanced and Experienced
Kansas had an extremely intriguing 2018-19, revealing flashes of brilliance along with being rated in the top five in the AP poll for eight months, including 2 weeks in the top spot. Overall, the Jayhawks finished the year with a 26-10 record, falling to Auburn in the Round of 32. Kansas was a Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde team when it came to house and away splits, going a perfect 16-0 at Allen Fieldhouse but only 3-8 in true road games — very confusing results.
The Jayhawks needed to battle through accidents, losing protect Lagerald Vick for its summer in February. He is a senior and won’t be back next year. Junior center Udoka Azubuike played nine matches . But Kansas, despite those huge holes in the frontcourt and backcourt had a Round of 32 appearance. The Jayhawks should be feisty this upcoming season as I don’t anticipate Azubuike to be drafted and Vick will be their sole loss, so chances of +2000 provide decent value.