Kentucky at Tennessee Spread, ATS Pick & TV InfoJosh Bailey
Top-ranked Kentucky hits the road to Knoxville to take on the Tennessee Volunteers this Tuesday at 7:00 PM ET at Thompson-Boling Arena. The game will be broadcast on ESPN and streamed live on WatchESPN.com.
Kentucky remains undefeated with an impressive 25-0 record, and dominated their opponents for most of the season, but with a less than average strength of schedule most analysts wonder if the competition of March Madness will dethrone the Wildcats.
Proving my point are the college hoops oddsmakers who have listed the Tennessee Vols as 14.5 point home underdogs.
A Closer Look At The Kentucky at Tennessee Spread, My ATS Pick & TV Info
Matchup: (1) Kentucky Wildcats at Tennessee Volunteers
Date: Feb. 17, 2015
Start Time: 7:00 p.m. ET
Location: Knoxville, Tennessee
Stadium: Thompson-Boling Arena
TV Info: ESPN
Radio: Kentucky Vs Tennessee
Point Spread: Kentucky Wildcats -14.5
Kentucky Will Cover the Spread If
Kentucky gets turnovers and converts those turnovers into easy buckets.
The last time that these two teams met, way back in January of 2014, Kentucky only beat Tennessee by 8 points, 74 to 66, as a -8.5 points home favorite. Obviously, Kentucky is a better team this year than last year, but the expectations are much higher as well.
Most coaches dream of coaching the AP top-ranked team once in their careers. @UKCoachCalipari has done it 100 times. He's won 91 of them.
— Kentucky Basketball (@KentuckyMBB) February 15, 2015
Kentucky’s best shot to cover the spread against Tennessee on the road, not just to win the game outright but to cover the spread, is for the Wildcats to force turnovers and then get easy buckets in transition. Tennessee committed only 12 turnovers in the game last season and Kentucky couldn’t cover the spread. Josh Richardson, Tennessee’s starting point-guard has a tendency to turn the ball over. He committed 7 versus Ole Miss alone, which should give Kentucky backers confidence.
Tennessee Will Cover the Spread If
The Vols are patient and work for a high percentage shot.
Tennessee needs to be patient on offense and work for a high percentage shot when they face Kentucky. That’s not going to be easy to do since the Wildcats allow a 34.2% success rate from the field, but the last thing that Tennessee wants to do is get into an up and down game with Kentucky.
Tennessee defeated Kentucky three times during the 1978-79 season, including this win in Stokely Athletics Center. pic.twitter.com/Y4mLMXmpcM
— Tennessee Basketball (@Vol_Hoops) February 16, 2015
That’s just not the Volunteers’ style. The Vols score 64.6 points per game on average from 43.5% shooting. They’re only good behind the three-point line 34.7% of the time. The percentages can stay the same if their defense plays as well as it usually does, 63.2 points and 37.7% from three allowed, but if they speed the game up, Kentucky can bury them by 20 or more points. Tennessee needs to play their style and hold Kentucky’s possessions down in order to cover the spread in this game. If the game is too fast, the Wildcats are going to bury the Vols.