College Basketball Odds and Predictions: Kentucky Wildcats vs. Mississippi Rebels

Kentucky Wildcats at No. 16 Mississippi Rebels
Tuesday, 1/29/12, 9:00 PM EST, TV:  ESPN
Opening Point Spread:  Mississippi -3
Current Betting Line:  Mississippi -3
Opening Total:  145
Current Total:  146.5
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker

The Mississippi Rebels have not fared well historically against the Kentucky Wildcats
The Mississippi Rebels have not fared well historically against the Kentucky Wildcats

Kentucky has won three of its last four games, including a 75-70 victory over the LSU Tigers as 15.5-point home favorites, while going OVER the posted total of 142.5.  The Wildcats have four projected starters averaging in double figures, with guard Archie Goodwin leading the way in scoring 14.6 points per game.  Offensively, the team is averaging 75.8 points per game, while shooting 48.5 percent from the field overall.  Kentucky is 1-5 ATS versus conference opponents this year, which can’t be ignored when looking over the college basketball odds page.

The Wildcats are 99-13 all-time against the Rebels, with their .884 winning percentage being the highest versus any league opponent for the program.  Kentucky freshman Nerlens Noel is definitely a player to watch on both ends of the floor, as he averaged 9.0 points and 10.5 rebounds in two games last week, while tallying 34 blocks over the last five games.  Head coach John Calipari has recorded a dominating 60-17 record on the road dating back to the 2005-06 campaign.

Mississippi will put the Southeastern Conference’s longest current win streak on the line Tuesday night, which must be considered when making your NCAA basketball picks.  The Rebels are 6-0 in league play for the first time in school history and will play their first game as a ranked team versus an unranked Kentucky squad since 2001.  Junior guard Marshall Henderson is the player to watch offensively, as he leads the conference in averaging 19.4 points per game, while ranking third nationally in knocking down 3.9 3-pointers a contest.  Mississippi is 5-1 ATS at home this season, with the UNDER going 2-1 in three opportunities.

The Rebels are fifth in the country in averaging 80.3 points per game, while they also get after it a bit on the defensive end—limiting foes to 27.6 percent shooting from beyond the arc.  Sophomore point guard Jarvis Summers has become an offensive threat of late, averaging 12.5 points in six conference games, which is far better than his 7.1 mark during non-conference play.

Sports bettors will likely play the total in this affair, as the Rebels have fallen short of the number in all four of their games as home favorites of three points or less since 2010.

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