Kansas vs. Santa Barbara - 11/14/14 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction
Santa Barbara Gauchos (21-9) at Kansas Jayhawks (25-10)
College Basketball: Friday, November 14, 2014 at 8:00 pm (Allen Fieldhouse)
The Line: Kansas Jayhawks -14 -- Over/Under: TBA See the Latest Odds
The Kansas Jayhawks and the UC Santa Barbara Gauchos face off on Friday in Lawrence in as they both tip-off their 2014-2015 college basketball seasons.
The Kansas Jayhawks lost two of the top three players drafted in last year’s NBA Draft but they still are absolutely loaded this season. Kansas has three of the top 10 NBA Draft prospects this season including two freshman who may be playing their only season in Lawrence. Wayne Selden Jr. returns and many though he would have been a high pick last season but he should much better than the 9.7 points and 2.5 assists he averaged last year. Perry Ellis is Kansas’ leading returning scorer at 13.5 points per game but he isn’t getting much hype. Kelly Oubre is one of two freshman everyone seems to be talking about and the 6-7 guard that can pretty much do it all like we happen to see at Kansas seemingly every year. Cliff Alexander is a 6-8 power forward who is rated number three among NBA Draft prospects who is a physical type both going to the hole and grabbing rebounds. Devonte Graham is a point guard who also might compete for a starting spot but it might not be right away and the list really does on and on. Kansas is simply loaded once again.
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UC Santa Barbara had 21 wins a season ago and looked to be headed toward the NCAA Tournament but I the Big West Tourney they ran into a buzz saw in Cal Poly and were run out of the gym 69-38. Taran Brown transferred to Wyoming and Kyle Boswell graduated but UCSB still has their best player, Alan Williams, back on the team. Williams averaged 21.3 points and 11.5 rebounds throwing in 2.4 blocks and he had 16 double-doubles last season. The backcourt for Santa Barbara returns with Michale Bryson who averaged 11.5 points and Zaimico Harmon who scored 7.8 points and dished out over five assists per game and look for Juco transfer DaJuan Smith to get minutes as well. John Green has simply never been healthy but somehow the Gauchos believe the fourth year is the charm. UCSB may not be in Kansas’ class but they aren’t stiffs either.
Kansas is 1-4 against the spread in their last five games, and 0-4 against the spread in their last four non-conference games. UCSB is 9-3 against the spread in their last 12 Friday games and 19 of their last 27 non-conference games have gone over the total.
I see UCSB keep this close for a half or even the first 30 minutes but in the end Kansas has too much talent an should pull away and cover what looks to be a very reasonable number.