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Kansas vs. Kentucky

National Championship Pick

4/2/12

We've reached the end of yet another college basketball season. Kentucky and Kansas will tee it up tonight for all the marbles with the Wildcats favored by 6, up 1 point from the opener of 5. The total on the game is 137, down 3 points from where it opened at 140.

The betting public has been all over Kentucky and hey, why not. Their run has been spectacular. They've been winning by wide margins all year long making the -6 they are laying here look way too easy. Maybe, maybe not.

We'll keep this short and sweet. If you follow us, you know we play college hoops by the numbers. We have several methods we use to handicap a game and get a number. We rely on our score prediction model as well as power ratings and readjusting those ratings based on current form. Every method we use comes up with a margin much less than 6 points.

The largest margin we have, is 3 points, and that's using our model and data from the last 7 games. That predicted final is 75-72 with Kentucky on top.

Using season to date data, the model says 68-68. Uh oh, overtime!

Something else to keep in mind. We told you that when readjusting power ratings to emphasize current form, Ohio State was playing at a higher level than any other tournament team, and they were beaten by Kansas.

Bottom line - Is Kentucky the better team? Yes. Will Kentucky likely win? More than likely we'd say. Is it a mismatch? No, we don't think so. Kansas has a heck of a shot here and we're confident in our numbers. Anything can happen of course, and this game will likely be decided late, at the foul line where Kentucky is lights out.

We'll back our numbers and make a season ending play on Kansas +6

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