Kansas State vs. Kansas: NCAA Basketball Picks and Predictions

Kansas State vs. Kansas: NCAA Basketball Picks and PredictionsKansas State vs. Kansas: NCAA Basketball Picks and PredictionsXavier Sneed #20 of the Kansas State Wildcats shoots. Ed Zurga/Getty Images/AFP

If Punxsutawney Phil sees his shadow Tuesday, the furry weather prognosticator is telling us to prepare for another six weeks of chilly winter temps. Things will also remain chilly in Lawrence if Bill Self sees his Kansas Jayhawks drop another contest when the rival Kansas State Wildcats come to town for a clash on Tuesday’s college basketball odds card.

Kansas State Wildcats vs. Kansas Jayhawks

Tuesday, February 02, 2021 – 08:00 PM EST at Allen Fieldhouse

It has been a long time since we’ve seen Kansas go through a rough patch like the one that the Jayhawks find themselves in presently. They have dropped four of their last, including their first 3-game losing streak since 2013, and plummeted all the way down to No. 23 in the AP poll. Kansas set a record earlier this season for most consecutive weeks in the AP top 25, currently at 232, and another loss would surely end that streak that began, ironically, on February 2, 2009.

KU Looking for Phog Magic to Turn Things Around

If the numbers at online sports betting sites are any indication, a dubya is all but in the books against Kansas State. Kansas is laden with the heaviest chalk on Tuesday’s board at -18 to -18½ at various shops, with 133-133½ for the total.

All four losses in the recent 5-game stretch came on the road, and the Jayhawks are 7-1 at Allen Fieldhouse on the campaign. That one home defeat was a doozy, however, one of the worst setbacks in Lawrence the Jayhawks have suffered as Texas blew them out, 84-59. The hard times started with a 75-70 loss at Oklahoma State, followed by defeats at Baylor and Oklahoma. Kansas broke that string with a 59-51 win at home over TCU, though that really wasn’t impressive considering the Jayhawks were favored by 14.

Last Saturday found Kansas in Knoxville going up against Tennessee in the Big 12/SEC Challenge, and the Volunteers busted out an 80-61 final to easily cover as 3-point home favorites. Tennessee scored the game’s first five points and never trailed, eventually building a 26-point lead in the second half. The Jayhawks were beaten badly on the glass, and shot under 40% for the fourth consecutive game.

Christian Braun #2 of the Kansas Jayhawks shoots the ball against the Kentucky Wildcats. Andy Lyons/Getty Images/AFP

K-State Drags 8-Game Skid to Lawrence

As strange as it is to see Kansas sitting in the middle of the Big 12 pack, it’s also a bit odd to see Kansas State down near the bottom of the standings. Bruce Weber would love to have his team only in the midst of a 1-4 stretch like the Jayhawks, instead of the 8-game losing streak his Wildcats are mired in. They managed to start the conference schedule with a victory over Iowa State, but have since dropped all eight Big 12 matchups. Kansas State has failed to cover any of their last four games and struggled on both ends of the floor.

Being at home this past weekend against a Texas A&M team that had never won in Manhattan didn’t help at all. Online sportsbooks were giving the Wildcats 2 points on their own floor, and Kansas State led by 3 with a little more than two minutes left before the bottom fell out. The Aggies stepped up the pressure and outscored the Wildcats 13-3 down the stretch for a 68-61 final to get the victory in the Big 12/SEC clash. Texas A&M made all 11 free throws in the closing minutes, outscoring Kansas State 22-5 at the charity stripe for the game.

Jayhawks Have Won Eleven of Last Twelve in Rivalry

A win Tuesday night would give Kansas its 200th in the rivalry with Kansas State, the Wildcats checking in with 94 triumphs in the one-sided series. The Jayhawks have dominated the last 27 years, winning 60 of the 66 clashes, and stand 50-18 against the Wildcats at Allen Fieldhouse. Kansas State’s last win in Lawrence came in January 2006, the Jayhawks winning the last 14 meetings on their home floor.

Kansas swept the two meetings last season, covering as 16½-point chalk with an 81-60 decision in the January meeting at The Phog. The final easily eclipsed a 126½-point total after the previous two meetings in Lawrence fell short of the marks.

Kansas probably couldn’t have picked a better conference opponent to dig out of the current home than having Kansas State come to Allen Fieldhouse. Still, that’s a bunch of points to cover for a team that is in such a downward spiral. I’ll play it safer with my NCAA basketball pick and look for the final coming up short.

NCAAB Pick: Under 133½ (-108) at Heritage Sports (visit our Heritage Sports Review)

Under 133½(-108)

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*The pick reflects the line at the moment the writer made the play, the odds at the beginning of this article show the live line movement. Since the lines might vary, don’t forget to refer back to our live odds.


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