The Kentucky Wildcats face Louisville Saturday on the Final 4 odds menu and it's as much a battle between coaches as it is between players.
Louisville, the No. 4 seed that pulled upsets during March Madness, brings Rick Pitino while Kentucky, the bracket's top seed and game favorite, brings John Calipari. They also bring an eight-game wiin streak where they have covered the point spread every time.
Calipari replaced Pitino in Kentucky and now they face off with the national title game at stake. [ Bet Kentucky to win it all and pocket a 50% bonus at TopBet ]
The Wildcats opened as 9-point favorites and Charles Barkley believes KU is so good, they would beat some NBA teams.
The Cardinals meanwhile continue to win as underdogs (10-3 ATS in their past 13 games in that role) and won't settle for being listed on the Final Four odds menu - they want to play on Monday in New Orleans. [ Best KU odds, visit 5Dimes ]
The Wildcats currently sports a 36-2 record overall in NCAAB action, and have posted a corresponding betting slate of 16-21 ATS. The Cardinals are 30-9 and 22-13-1 ATS. Betting totals have seen the Wildcats produce a 16-18-2 OVER/UNDER record on the season, while the Cardinals have gone 14-21-1 against the number.
Power Rankings / Prediction:
The Power Rankings at Odds Shark show No. 7-rated Louisville taking on the No. 2-rated Wildcats in this contest. The scores prediction computer here indicates a possible 84-74 win for the Wildcats on Saturday.
How They Match Up:
Rating these schools in several key categories is important for handicappers and Kentucky has the nation's No. 15-rated offensive output, at 77.9 PPG. The visiting Cardinals defense ranks No. 31 allowing on average 60.8 PPG. The Wildcats FG% has averaged 48.8% so far, more than the Cardinals marksmen have achieved on the year, 42.5% per game.
Defensively, Louisville features the nation's No. 23-rated defense on the road, allowing 62.7 points per game. Kentucky, meanwhile, comes in at No. 21 nationally in scoring at home.
Last time out for Louisville, they were a 72-68 winner as they battled Florida at home. They covered in the match as a 1-point underdog. Louisville got 19 points from Russ Smith en route to a 72-68 victory over Florida on Saturday at US Airways Center.
Kentucky was an 82-70 winner in their most recent outing at home against Baylor. They covered the 7.5-point spread as favorites. The Wildcats grabbed an 82-70 win over the Bears on Sunday, behind a 19-point effort from Michael Kidd-Gilchrist at Georgia Dome.
Louisville Cardinals Trends:
When playing on Saturday are 3-7
After playing Florida are 2-0
After a win are 7-3
Kentucky Wildcats Trends:
When playing on Saturday are 7-3
After a win are 9-1
A few Cardinals at Wildcats trends to consider:
Kentucky is 24-1 SU in its last 25 games
The total has gone UNDER in 10 of Kentucky's last 11 games when playing Louisville
The total has gone OVER in 5 of Kentucky's last 6 games
Kentucky is 6-2 SU in its last 8 games when playing Louisville