Kentucky Wildcats Odds to Win the 2015 NCAA Tournament with Picks and Predictions
by George Monroy - 2/24/2015
Every year it seems like the Kentucky Wildcats are in the middle of another all-time recruiting class and building up talk about possibly going undefeated on the way to another national title. Coach John Calipari's extraordinary recruiting skills have put the squad at the forefront of college basketball. And even though the Wildcats did not win a title last season, they played in the championship game twice and took home one title over a three-season span.
Kentucky is yet again the favorite to win the national title and make Calipari only the third coach to win multiple championships since 2000. Heading into the final two weeks of the regular season, Kentucky is on the verge of finishing the year undefeated and giving itself the opportunity to be the first team in nearly 40 years to hoist a national title trophy without a loss. Let's s take a closer look at Kentucky's 2015 national title odds with predictions and analysis.
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Kentucky Wildcats 2015 National Title Storylines
The excitement surrounding Kentucky is beginning to permeate college basketball and seep on to the national stage. Basketball experts and pundits have known just how good the Wildcats are since the beginning of the year, but now that the NCAA tournament is only a few weeks away, and March Madness is on everyone's mind, the average fan has finally begun to notice Calipari's squad. The hype train is just going to pick up speed in the coming weeks.
Kentucky has been the unanimous No.1 team in the nation for four straight weeks and continues to receive all 65 first-place votes in The Associated Press poll. The squad has nine players that are expected to be NBA Draft picks and is probably the most talented group in the entire nation. The question on the table, like it seems to be every year with the team, is whether or not Kentucky's talent can overcome its inexperience.
The Wildcats have already dealt with a major setback this season when starting forward and key contributor Alex Poythress was lost for the season back in December because of an ACL tear in his knee. The loss impacted Calipari's two-platoon system but has really allowed Willie Cauley-Stein and Karl-Anthony Towns to shine in his absence-each are grabbing more than six rebounds per game.
Kentucky Wildcats 2015 National Title Odds and Key Trends
Kentucky is receiving -120 odds to win the 2015 national title, according to Sportsbook.ag, and is the overwhelming favorite. The next team in line, the Wisconsin Badgers, is receiving +750 odds. The Wildcats are also receiving odds to finish the season (both regular and post) undefeated with the "No" currently favored at -200.
Overall, Kentucky has not been a great ATS team and currently has a 14-13 mark, with 8-9 and 4-4 home and road splits. The team has been good, great and dominant during stretches of the season, but having to face 18- to 25-point spreads on a nightly basis is probably too much of a line for any team to overcome. Kentucky, however, has been a solid "under" bet for most of the season and has stayed below its posted total in 17 of 27 games this season.
Kentucky Wildcats Odds to Win the 2015 NCAA Tournament Picks and Predictions
Kentucky is on the verge of making history and is only four games away from finishing off the year undefeated. The squad has games against Mississippi State, No. 18 Arkansas, Georgia and Florida, and if they can enter the tournament without a loss on their record then an undefeated season is soundly within reach. That motivation has to be enough to have Calipari obsessing and losing sleep with excitement.
The number on Kentucky winning the 2015 national title is not a great one, and wagering on a team at -120 during a single-elimination tournament is a scary proposition. However, the Wildcats look as dominant as a team can look with four games left in the regular season and probably should be receiving those types of odds. Betting on Kentucky is a solid wager to make and probably the smartest bet as well.
But if you are looking for value, wouldn't wagering on the team to finish the season undefeated at +200 be the correct way to go? Is Calipari really going to give up a game this late in the season just because? And isn't adding an extra four games to the team's tournament worth swapping -120 for +200 odds ? Of course it is.
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