Houston Cougars vs Kentucky Wildcats Preview, Predictions & Betting Tips
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Houston vs Kentucky Sweet 16 Betting Preview
Friday March 29, 2019, 9:59 @ Sprint Center Kansas City, MO
In the Sweet 16 in the Midwest Region, 2nd seed Kentucky faces off with 3rd seed Houston.
Houston is in the Sweet 16 for the first time since the “Phi Slama Jama” team in 1984 led by Hakeem Olajuwon and Clyde Drexler. They have won both of their tourney games by at least 15 points, but have not faced higher than an 11 seed.
The team is led by a great defense that ranks 6th in the nation in points allowed per game and they only gave up 59 points in their last game.
The Cougars did have four games facing ranked teams this season, but three of those games were against AAC foe Cincinnati, who beat them in the conference tournament title game and were bounced in the first round of the College Basketball National Tournament.
Kentucky is no stranger to the Sweet 16 and their defense has been awesome in their two tournament games only giving up 44 points and 56 points respectively.
They have not faced Houston since the 2007 season.
The winner of this game will face the winner of the Auburn vs North Carolina game for the right to go to the Final Four.
Houston Cougars Form
After a blowout win in their first tournament game, Houston beat Ohio State 74-59 in their last game. While they did not shoot the 3-pointer well in the game they shot 46.4% from the floor and held the Buckeyes to 38.8% shooting and also forced 14 turnovers.
Four of five starters for the Cougars went for double figures led by Corey Davis Jr. with 21 points.
Davis Jr. leads the team averaging 17.1 ppg and Armoni Brooks (13.2 ppg) is the only other player averaging in double figures. Davis Jr’s has totaled 47 points and 13 rebounds in the two tourney games and Brooks had 10 points in the win over Ohio State after only going for three points in the opening game.
Kentucky Wildcats Form
Like Houston, Kentucky had a blowout in their tournament opener and in their last game beat a good Wofford team 62-56.
While the Wildcats only shot 40.4% they held the Terriers to 37.5% shooting and had 17 points from the free throw line while Wofford only had six. Reid Travis led the Wildcats with 14 points and Ashton Hagans chimed in for 12 points.
The big question for the Wildcats is will PJ Washington play? He leads the team in scoring and rebounding and has a sprained foot. He is questionable for this game and in the win over Wofford he was on the bench with a hard cast.
Tyler Herro (14.1 ppg) is the 2nd leading scorer and had nine points in the Wofford game.
Houston vs Kentucky Sweet 16 Betting Trends
Below are the top Sweet 16 betting trends for Houston vs Kentucky.
- Houston is 8-2 ATS in their last 10 non-conference games.
- Houston is 9-3 ATS in their last 12 neutral site games.
- Houston has an Under record of 3-1-1 in their last 5 games.
- Kentucky is 6-0 ATS in their last 6 non-conference games.
- Kentucky is 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games after an ATS win.
- Kentucky has an Under record of 16-5 in their last 21 games.
Houston Cougars vs Kentucky Wildcats Tips
Even without PJ Washington, we have to go with the Wildcats in this one. They are a very athletic team and will give problems to the guards of Houston mainly the scorers in Davis Jr. and Brooks.
Kentucky will slow the pace and play good defense and they will get the win, cover the spread, and advance to the Elite 8.
Tip: Kentucky -2.5 (-110)