CBB Picks: Take Georgia As Underdog At Kentucky

We need to have a conversation about the overpriced spreads favoring the Kentucky Wildcats.

Kentucky has been valued too much on the spread in SEC play and Tuesday presents the perfect time to fade the Wildcats.

Kentucky is an 11-point favorite coming off a road win over Tennessee that took a toll on the Wildcats physically and emotionally.

Georgia is one of the most underrated power-conference teams in Division 1. Mike White has done a great job in year one after coming over from Florida.

UGA’s defense propelled it to a 3-1 start in league play. That unit will be the key to covering the double-digit spread in favor of Kentucky.

There are a few other obvious spots on the board for me on Tuesday, but UGA-Kentucky stands out the most by far.

Georgia (+11) at Kentucky (9 p.m. ET, ESPN)

Kentucky is overrated on the point spread.

After all, this is a team that lost outright as a 20-point favorite against South Carolina one week ago.

South Carolina is a far worse team than Georgia. The Bulldogs are 3-1 in the SEC and have held Auburn, Mississippi State and Ole Miss, all top 100 KenPom teams, under 65 points.

Georgia can meet strength with strength on the perimeter inside Rupp Arena.

The Bulldogs rank ninth in three-point defense.

Kentucky was horrendous from three-point range against Alabama, who has the 13th-best three-point defense. The Wildcats shot 5-for-20 from three in their 26-point loss in Tuscaloosa.

Georgia also will not be overwhelmed by Oscar Tshiebwe in the paint. The Bulldogs are a top 50 offensive rebounding team. There are less than two offensive boards per game between Kentucky and Georgia.

The Bulldogs should not be intimidated by visiting Kentucky and I think the Wildcats will have a bit of a letdown after pulling off the much-needed win over Tennessee.

I don’t know if Georgia can win outright, but the Bulldogs can absolutely stay within 11 points behind their defense.

Houston at Tulane (Under 146) (7 p.m. ET, ESPN+)

Houston-Tulane presents a wild clash of styles.

Tulane ranks sixth in pace on KenPom. Houston is 335th.

Normally you do not see a total this high for a Houston game because its defense can be so overwhelming.

Houston is 6-1 to the over in its last seven games, but none of those totals closed over 135 points.

The Cougars will try to impose their defensive will on the game first.

Any slow down for multiple minutes will kill the high total. And I think you’ll see that. Houston played four true road games and did not give up more than 62 points in any of those contests.

Rhode Island at Richmond (-8) (7 p.m. ET, ESPN+)

Rhode Island is a really bad road team.

The Rams lost by 10 and 11 on the road against Duquesne and UMass in Atlantic 10 play. They lost by two in overtime to La Salle as well.

Rhode Island’s other two true road games were a 53-49 loss to Boston College and a nine-point defeat at the hands of Georgia State.

If Rhody struggles against average and bad teams on the road, imagine how it will fare against a Richmond team on the fringe of the KenPom Top 100.

Richmond holds an average margin of victory of 16.6 points at home. The Rams should help boost that average against a Rhode Island team that ranks in the bottom third in most major offensive categories.

Boston College at North Carolina (7 p.m. ET, ACC Network)

North Carolina 1H Spread -8

North Carolina is a 14-point favorite against Boston College, but I prefer the first-half number because of how poor BC has been lately in the opening 20 minutes.

BC was down by 10 at half to Wake Forest and faced a 15-point deficit against Miami. The Golden Eagles also faced road halftime deficits of nine at Syracuse and 12 at Duke.

UNC should jump on BC early. The Tar Heels owned double-digit halftime leads in two of their last three wins.

My only concern with the full game spread is UNC pulling the regulars with four or so minutes left and being up anywhere from 15-20 points.

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