Notre Dame vs Kentucky Elite 8 Odds & Final Score Prediction

Notre Dame vs Kentucky Elite 8 Odds & Final Score Prediction

Notre Dame vs Kentucky Elite 8 Odds & Final Score Prediction

The 3rd-seeded Notre Dame Fighting Irish return to the Elite Eight for the first time since 1979 only to face the most dominate college hoops team ever: the top-seeded Kentucky Wildcats.

The Fighting Irish are coming off a huge 81-70 victory against the Wichita State Shockers. Notre Dame used the second half to bounce the Shockers. The Irish shot 75% over the final 20 minutes, overwhelming the seventh-seeded Shockers with a barrage of 3-pointers.

Unfortunately for the Fighting Irish, the Kentucky Wildcats had a bigger win. The Wildcats crushed the WVU by a score of 78-39. Yes, the Wilcats scored TWICE as many buckets as the Mountaineers.

A Closer Look At The Notre Dame Fighting Irish vs Kentucky Wildcats Elite Eight Odds & My Final Score Prediction

Matchup: (3) Notre Dame Fighting Irish vs (1) Kentucky Wildcats
Date: Mar. 28, 2015 
Start Time: 8:49 p.m. ET 
Location: Cleveland, Ohio
Stadium: Quicken Loans Arena
TV Info: TBS
Stream: March Madness Live
Radio: Notre Dame Vs Kentucky
Point Spread: Wildcats -11
Game Total: 137

Notre Dame’s Elite 8 Projected Starting Lineup:

Kentucky’s Elite 8 Projected Starting Lineup:

  • F Zach Auguste, 6-10, Jr, 12.6 ppg, 6.4 rpg
  • G Demetrius Jackson, 6-1, So, 12.4 ppg, 3.6 rpg
  • G Steve Vasturia, 6-5, So, 9.8 ppg, 3.0 rpg
  • G Jerian Grant, 6-5, Sr, 16.8 ppg, 3.1 rpg
  • G Pat Connaughton, 6-5, Sr, 12.5 ppg, 7.3 rpg
  • Coach: Mike Brey (15th season)
  • G Aaron Harrison, 6-6, So., 11.3 ppg, 2.4 rpg
  • G Andrew Harrison, 6-6, So., 9.2 ppg, 2.1 rpg, 3.7 apg
  • F Trey Lyles, 6-10, Fr., 8.4 ppg, 5.1 rpg
  • F Karl-Anthony Towns, 6-11, Fr., 9.7 ppg, 6.7 rpg
  • C Willie Cauley-Stein, 7-0, Jr., 9.3 ppg, 6.4 rpg
  • Coach: John Calipari (sixth season)

These two squads have faced off six times before with the Wildcats leading the series 4-2 both straight up and against the spread. However, the last time they met in 2012 the Irish won by 14, covering the spread that had them as a 1 point favorite.

Notre Dame ended the season 29-5, 14-12 against the spread and they beat the Northeastern Huskies (69-65), the Butler Bulldogs (67-64 OT), and the Wichita State Shockers (81-70) in the 2015 NCAA Tourney. The Irish average 78.8 points per game (12th), 15.1 assists per game (32nd), shoot 51.0% from the field (2nd), led by senior guard Jerian Grant (16.8 PPG, 3.1 RPG, 6.6 APG) and senior forward Pat Connaughton (12.5 PPG, 7.3 RPG, 0.9 BLKPG). Their defense permits 65.6 PPG (145th) while pulling down 32.8 rebounds per game (250th).

"It’s like blood in the water. You feel it, and you want to keep getting stops so you can keep running," Connaughton said. "It’s something you can’t get enough of."

Kentucky finished the regular season 34-0, 19-13-2 against the spread and is trying to become the first team to win the NCAA tournament with a perfect season. During their March Madness run, the Wildcats have beaten the Hampton Pirates (79-56), the Cincinnati Bearcats (64-51), and the West Virginia Mountaineers (78-39), with a 1-2 against the spread record. Sophomore guard Aaron Harrison (11.3 PPG, 2.4 RPG, 1.5 APG) and freshman guard Devin Booker (10.5 PPG, 1.9 RPG, 1.3 APG) lead the Wildcats and they averages 74.9 points per game (29th) while shooting 46.9% from the field (40th) and recording 14.7 assists per game (42nd). Kentucky’s defense allows 53.9 points per game (4th) and while grabbing 38.1 rebounds per game (21st).

"Well, that didn’t come from me because that’s not how I coach," Kentucky’s John Calipari said after stumping on West Virginia. "I mean, what, someone’s going to come in and say we’re going to lose, and they’re going to say they’re going to win. But we say at some point you have to step in the ring, we’ll lift the rope, you’ve got to come in here."

The Fighting Irish are 5-2 ATS in their last 7 games following a SU win, 5-2 ATS in their last 7 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600, 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games following an ATS win, 6-2 ATS in their last 8 games overall, 5-2 ATS in their last 7 neutral site games, but 1-8 ATS in their last 9 NCAA Tournament games.

The Wildcats are 4-1-1 ATS in their last 6 Saturday games, 8-3-2 ATS in their last 13 games as a favorite, 5-2 ATS in their last 7 games vs. a team with a winning SU record, 8-3-2 ATS in their last 13 games overall, and 12-3-2 ATS in their last 17 neutral site games.

Elite Eight Final Score Prediction: Notre Dame 60-71 Wildcats.