A Rare Meeting
The jet-setting Kentucky Wildcats (6-2) return home on Saturday after a 73-69 win over Michigan last Sunday in a game played in London. UK has now had five nights of rest as it welcomes the Yale Bulldogs (8-2) to Rupp Arena as the programs meet for the second time in history. Kentucky won the first meeting by 21 points back when JFK was in office in 1961.
Yale Off to Solid Start
Yale is an Ivy League school, but these guys can hoop it up too. The quality of the opponent hasn’t been the best (262nd in adjusted strength of schedule) but winning builds momentum, and the Bulldogs have come out with an 8-2 start, which is the best for the school since 1945.
Yale will try to win Saturday’s game with defense, as two opponents have broken the 62-point barrier against the Bulldogs this season. Both of those outcomes have come in the last two games, though, a 71-61 loss at Butler and beating Stony Brook 77-72 the contest before that. Yale’s losses this year have come on the road, with the defeat to Butler and falling 65-62 at Colorado.
If Yale’s defense can’t contain Kentucky, will the Bulldogs’ offense be able to keep them in it? Matt Knowling leads the team with 16.2 ppg, but John Poulakidas (10.8) and Eric Jarvis (10.6) are the only two players scoring double figures for Yale.
Scoop on Free Play from the Locker Room
Kentucky at Home Has a Huge Edge
The Wildcats could come out a bit jet-lagged here after the trip to London, but they’ve had all week to recalibrate back in Lexington. Speaking of being home, UK is a tough squad to beat at Rupp Arena, going 5-0 on its own court. UK will be among the teams garnering interest in march madness betting when the tournament rolls around.
The win over Michigan at the O2 Arena in London was a nice resume builder for the Wildcats, who had all five starters score in double figures. It was also a small form of revenge on a Big Ten team from Michigan after UK had dropped an 86-77 2OT game against Tom Izzo’s Spartans squad earlier in the season.
What’s really going to be interesting in Saturday’s game is how Yale stacks up against reigning Player of the Year Oscar Tshiebwe, who is averaging 14.2 points and 13.5 rebounds per game on the season. The Bulldogs don’t regularly play anybody over 6’8″ in their rotation, so Tshiebwe will likely be roaming free on the interior in this matchup.
Yale vs Kentucky Injuries
Yale vs Kentucky Head-to-Head
There is almost no history to review for betting online in the Yale vs Kentucky matchup.
These teams haven’t met since December 27th, 1961, with UK getting the 79-58 victory. Larry Purciful led the way with 25 points for the Wildcats.
Yale vs Kentucky Game Information
- Game: Yale (8-2) vs Kentucky (6-2)
- Location: Rupp Arena, Lexington, Ky.
- Day/Time: Saturday, Dec. 10, 1 p.m. ET
- Yale vs Kentucky Live Stream: TBS.com
Yale vs Kentucky Betting Lines
Yale vs Kentucky Picks & Prediction
Kentucky is favored by 15½ points over the Ivy League opponent.
Yale has a scrappy defense, and Kentucky is coming off a long travel trip to London, but most people would concede that this one is going the Wildcats’ way. Tschiebwe will just be too much on the interior for the undersized Bulldogs to handle.
The odds in this chart are based on the time of publication. They are subject to change.