Kansas State-Kansas Betting Preview: Can Wildcats Snap Allen Fieldhouse Drought?
Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Dean Wade
With the Big 12 regular season championship hanging in the balance, the Kansas State Wildcats and Kansas Jayhawks meet in Lawrence on Monday night.
The Wildcats have not won at Kansas since 2006, but will their senior-laden team end that streak? Or will the Jayhawks stay alive for an unprecedented 15th straight Big 12 title?
Let’s take a close look.
>> All odds as of 8 a.m. ET. Download The Action Network App to get real-time odds and live win probabilities on your bets.
Betting Odds: Kansas State Wildcats at Kansas Jayhawks
- Spread: Kansas -3.5
- Over/Under: 133
- Time: 9 p.m. ET
- TV: ESPN
Kansas State (21-6) is in prime position to stop the 14-year reign of Kansas atop the Big 12 conference. The Wildcats are 11-3 in conference with a two-game lead over the Jayhawks. They are 15-10 overall, which includes an impressive 7-3 on the road.
Kansas (20-7) is coming off the most lopsided Big 12 loss in the Bill Self era. The Jayhawks were manhandled at Texas Tech in a 91-62 loss on Saturday. The Jayhawks are still undefeated at home (15-0), but only 11-13-1 ATS.
Kansas State defeated Kansas 74-67 at home on Feb. 5. That win occurred while the Jayhawks still had second-leading scorer Lagerald Vick (14.1 ppg, 45.5% 3P), who has now left the team to deal with personal matters. Vick’s absence will help the Wildcats continue their hot shooting from 3P. Kansas State ranks second with a 3P average of 37.2% in conference games. In their first matchup, the Wildcats shot 41.7% (10 of 24) from beyond the arc.
Kansas State also has one of the best defenses in the country. It ranks seventh overall in adjusted defensive efficiency and 20th in turnovers forced. Within conference play, the Wildcats have been even more dominant, ranking second in defensive efficiency and first in steals.
Kansas is starting to feel the effects of losing not only Vick, but starting center Udoka Azubuike. The Jayhawks have been forced to rely on freshmen more than ever before in the Self era.
Their starting five against Texas Tech featured five players who were not in a Kansas uniform last year. Junior forward Dedric Lawson (19 ppg, 10.1 rpg) has been great, but he needs to be more assertive as the only veteran presence on the floor.
The Jayhawks offense has been struggling as the season has progressed. Currently, it ranks sixth in the conference in adjusted offensive efficiency and seventh in 2P%.
The Jayhawks have shot the 3P well (36.3%), but Kansas State holds opponents to just 31.2% from beyond the arc.
Kansas has played well at home this year, but the Jayhawks are now at their most vulnerable. They will bring their best effort to this game, but that won’t be enough.
With an inexperienced backcourt and no Vick, this is the Wildcats’ best chance to break their 13-year losing streak at Phog Allen Fieldhouse. Grab the 3.5 points in a game the Wildcats could win.
The Pick: Kansas State +3.5