2017 NCAA Tournament
Midwest Regional Final
#1 Kansas Jayhawks vs #3 Oregon Ducks
Saturday, March 25, 2017, 8:45 pm Eastern, TV: TBS
Sprint Center – Kansas City, Missouri
Opening Line: Kansas -6
Current Line: Kansas -7
Opening Total: 156 1/2
Current Total: 157
Opening Money Line: Kansas -235 / Oregon +195
Current Money Line: Kansas -355 / Oregon +295
The 31-4 Kansas Jayhawks take on the 32-5 Oregon Ducks in the Midwest Regional Final Saturday night in Kansas City. The Jayhawks are the #1 seed in the region and the Ducks are the #3 seed. The winner will advance to the Final Four next week in Glendale, Arizona against the South Regional Champion #1 North Carolina or #2 Kentucky. Kansas leads the series against Oregon 4-3, but they haven’t played since 2003. Kansas won the only previous meeting in the NCAA tournament, also in this round in 2002 in Milwaukee.
Oregon is coached by Dana Altman. The Ducks tied with Arizona for the Pac 12 regular season title with a 16-2 record. However, Arizona beat Oregon 83-80 in the Pac 12 Championship game in Las Vegas. Oregon beat #14 seed Iona 93-77 in the first round and #11 seed Rhode Island 75-72 in the second round, both in Sacramento. The ducks beat #7 Michigan 69-68 in the semifinals Thursday Oregon is making their 15th appearance in the Tournament including five straight. They are in the Sweet 16 for the seventh time and second straight time. Oregon hasn’t been back to the Final Four since winning the inaugural championship back in 1939.
Oregon has road losses to Baylor, Colorado, UCLA, plus neutral site losses to Georgetown in Maui and Arizona in Las Vegas. The Ducks have home wins over Valparaiso, Boise State, Alabama, Montana, Fresno State, UCLA, USC, Oregon State, Cal, Stanford, Arizona State, Arizona, Utah, and Colorado. Oregon has road wins over Washington, Washington State, Utah, USC, Cal, Stanford, and Oregon State, plus neutral site wins over Tennessee and Connecticut in Maui, UNLV in Portland, plus Arizona State and Cal in the Pac 12 tournament in Las Vegas. The Ducks are 20-15-1 ATS and the total is 17-19 this season. Oregon was a 1 point favorite against Michigan and the total was 148.
Kansas is coached by Bill Self. The Jayhawks won the Big 12 regular season title with a 16-2 record. It was the 13th straight season that Kansas won at least a share of the regular season title. However, the Jayhawks were upset by TCU 85-82 in the Big 12 quarters in Kansas City. Kansas is the #1 seed in the Midwest and beat #16 UC-Davis 100-62 in the first round and #9 Michigan State 90-70 in the second round, both in Tulsa. Kansas crushed #4 Purdue 98-66 in the Sweet 16 Thursday. The Jayhawks are making their 46th appearance in the NCAA Tournament. They have made the NCAA Tournament every year except 1989 since 1984. The Jayhawks are back in the Elite Eight for the 23rd time with 14 trips to the Final Four.
The Jayhawks have neutral site losses to Indiana in Honolulu and TCU in Kansas City, a road loss at West Virginia and a home loss to Iowa State. Kansas has neutral site wins over Duke in New York City, UAB, Georgia and Davidson in Kansas City, plus home wins over Long Beach State, Stanford, Nebraska, Kansas State, Texas Tech, Oklahoma State, Texas, Baylor, West Virginia, TCU, and Oklahoma. Kansas has road wins at UNLV, TCU, Oklahoma, Iowa State, Kentucky, Kansas State, Texas Tech, Baylor, Texas and Oklahoma State. The Jayhawks are 14-18-1 ATS and the total is 17-16 this season. Kansas was a 5 point favorite against Purdue and the total was 156.
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Oregon is outscoring teams 79-66 this season. The Ducks are #44 or better in both categories nationally. The Ducks are shooting 48.4% from the field and 37.9% from 3 point range. Oregon is #19 in field goal percentage nationally. Oregon makes 70.8% from the free throw line. Opponents are shooting 40.5% from the field and 31.3% from 3 point range. The Ducks are #26 or better in both categories. Oregon averages 36.6 rebounds per game and opponents average 29.1 per game. Oregon averages 16.1 assists, 11.7 turnovers, 6.6 steals and 6.4 blocks per game. Opponents average 11.4 assists, 13.6 turnovers, 4.8 steals and 3.5 blocks per game.
Dillon Brooks averages 16.4 points, 3.1 rebounds, 2.7 assists and 1.1 steals per game. Tyler Dorsey averages 14 points, 3.4 rebounds, and 1.8 assists per game. Chris Boucher averages 11.8 points, 6.1 rebounds and 2.5 blocks per game. He is out for the season with a knee injured suffered during the Pac 12 Tournament. Jordan Bell averages 10.8 points, 8.3 rebounds, 1.8 assists, 1.3 steals and 2.1 blocks per game. Elgin Cook averages 10.7 points, 4.4 rebounds, 3.1 assists and 1.1 steals per game. Payton Pritchard and Casey Benson will also get minutes in the rotation. M.J. Cage is out for the season with a knee injury.
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Kansas is outscoring teams 83-72 this season. The Jayhawks are #15 in scoring nationally. Kansas is shooting 48.9% from the field and 40.6% from 3 point range. The Jayhawks are #11 in field goal percentage and #5 in three point shooting nationally. Kansas makes 67.1% of their free throws. Opponents are shooting 41.7% from the field and 35.3% from 3 point range. The Jayhawks average 39.1 rebounds a game and opponents average 31.6 per game. Kansas is #18 in rebounding nationally. The Jayhawks average 16.4 assists, 13.1 turnovers, 6.9 steals and 4.7 blocks per game. Opponents average 12.7 assists, 13.5 turnovers, 7 steals and 3.7 blocks per game.
Guard Frank Mason III averages 20.8 points, 4.2 rebounds, 5.2 assists and 1.3 steals per game. Guard Josh Jackson averages 16.4 points, 7.2 rebounds, 3 assists, 1.6 steals and 1.1 blocks per game. Guard Devonte’ Graham averages 13.2 points, 3.2 rebounds, 4.3 assists, and 1.5 steals per game. Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk averages 9.8 points, 3.1 rebounds, 1.3 assists and 1 steal a game. LaGerald Vick averages 7.3 points and 3.5 rebounds per game. Landen Lucas averages 8.1 points and 8.5 rebounds a game. Center Udoka Azubuike (wrist) is out indefinitely.
Oregon is 8-1 ATS as an underdog of between 7-12.5 points, 5-1 as an NCAA Tournament underdog 4-1 as a neutral site underdog, 9-3 in Saturday games, 37-16 as an underdog, 9-4-1 in NCAA Tournament games, 1-3-1 overall, and in neutral site games, 1-5-1 against teams with winning records, and 0-3-1 after a straight up win.
Kansas is 4-0 ATS in non-conference games, 7-1 as an NCAA Tournament favorite, 6-1 in NCAA Tournament games and against teams with winning records, 4-1 as a favorite, as a neutral site favorite, overall and in neutral site games, 6-2 after scoring more than 90 points, and after a straight up win, and 4-10 after a cover.
Kansas has destroyed every team they have played so far in the tournament. Oregon has played three close games. This should be an up and down game as both teams can play in the 80’s. I think Kansas pulls away for a convincing win to return to the Final Four for the first time since 2012.