Kentucky vs Vanderbilt Odds
Kentucky and Vanderbilt meet Tuesday night in a game that will see two teams sit in the middle of the tightly packed SEC standings.
The Wildcats come into this matchup 4-3 in the SEC after winning three straight games against Tennessee, Georgia and Texas A&M. Those three wins came after a rock bottom loss to South Carolina at the Rupp Arena.
On the other hand, Vanderbilt has started to exceed preseason expectations after beating Arkansas and Georgia in the last three games. The Commodores are no strangers to stiff competition with the schedule’s 39th highest strength, according to KenPom’s Total Components.
To make a choice on which team will continue to climb the SEC ladder, let’s take a look at the odds and make a prediction for Kentucky vs. Vanderbilt.
This Kentucky team has completely turned its season around since losing to Alabama and losing at home to South Carolina as 21-point favorites.
That turnaround can be credited to freshman Cason Wallace, who played most of the minutes at the point guard position. He brings a level of insult that his counterpart Sahvir Wheeler just couldn’t consistently produce.
The roster that changed Kentucky’s season now has the highest Adjusted Team Efficiency Margin nationwide for any D1 roster (60+ holdings at https://t.co/cegyfz96ax).
In fact, Wallace/Reeves/Fredrick/Toppin/Oscar have the highest scoring of any lineup since 2019-20 pic.twitter.com/VVBrPMmz43
— Evan Miyakawa (@EvanMiya) January 18, 2023
That added offensive threat has also worked wonders for one of the country’s strongest insiders, Oscar Tshiebwe. In his last two games, Tshiebwe averaged 22 points and 20.5 rebounds.
This newfound starting lineup has helped the Wildcats climb to 25th nationwide in adjusted offensive efficiency while averaging 76.1 points per game.
Uncharacteristically, John Calipari’s Wildcats now need to improve on the defensive end to live up to preseason expectations. Kentucky ranks outside of the top 100 in allowable effective field goal percentage and turnover percentage — two areas that will be crucial to disrupting a thriving Vanderbilt offensive.
Until the Wildcats can find consistency on the defensive end, they will have a hard time breaking away from conference opponents.
Vanderbilt, picked by many to finish bottom of the SEC rankings, currently sits fifth with Georgia.
This success is the result of an experienced Commodores team tested early and often. Although they are only 10-9 overall, Vanderbilt has played against 10 teams in the top 100 this season.
The Commodores were particularly successful on offense, ranking 43rd nationally in adjusted efficiency. That’s partly down to her ability to take care of the basketball, create second chances, and find candid looks from across the arc.
Vanderbilt ranks 83rd nationally for offensive turnover percentage, giving up the ball on just 17.4% of possession. The Commodores combine this ball control with an offensive rebound percentage of 32.4% to create a possession advantage over most opponents.
Vanderbilt has used these possessions to find candid views from across the arch. The Commodores shoot 41.6% of their total field goals from the 3-point line, the 73rd highest rate in the country.
This offensive success will be crucial against a Kentucky team that is vulnerable on defense.
Kentucky vs Vanderbilt Betting Tip
Although Kentucky has completely turned its season around with a new and improved starting rotation, it’s a difficult situation for the Wildcats. The last three games for this Kentucky team have been a grind regardless of the results.
The Wildcats must now take to the streets and face a Vanderbilt offense primed to expose Kentucky’s weakness on defense.
The UK’s recent success is reflected in the market as the initial spread widened from Kentucky -2.5 to -4.5. I believe this steam gives us an opportunity to invest in a Vanderbilt team that is poised to take advantage of a favorable situational matchup with Kentucky.
With public money in Kentucky, keep an eye on the market and look for the best number.
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