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How and what to watch for Kentucky vs. No. 19 Tennessee

Kentucky is sitting in the bottom half of the SEC for the first time in a while and the Vols are creeping toward the top.

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Tennessee Volunteers forward John Fulkerson controls the ball against South Carolina Gamecocks forward Wildens Leveque during the second half at Thompson-Boling Arena.  Randy Sartin-USA TODAY Sports

The Kentucky Wildcats are just hoping the season ends mercifully soon as they head to Rocky Top to take on the No. 19 Tennessee Volunteers on Saturday.

UK (7-13, 6-7 SEC) isn’t used to struggling as much as they have during the 2021 season. They’re scoring just 69 points per game while they give up over 71 each time out to their opponents. Brandon Boston Jr. is the team’s leading scorer with only 12 points per game. They do have five players averaging in double figures, but they’re also shooting just 41% from the field, and rank 95th in the nation in offensive efficiency according to KenPom.

The Vols (15-5, 8-5 SEC) got off to a red-hot start this season but have faded a bit recently. They’ve lost four games in their last 10, including two of their last five games. Offensively they’re scoring 73 points per game while only allowing 62 to their opponents. KenPom has the defense as the third-most efficient unit in the country. Jaden Springer leads the Vols in points, scoring 12.4 per contest. They’re similar to Kentucky in terms of having a lot of players who score a few points here or there, without having one game-breaking type player.

KenPom is giving the Vols a 76% chance to come away with a win in this one.

Game Time/TV Channel/Streaming

You can watch Kentucky vs. Tennessee on Saturday, February 20th at 1:00 p.m. ET on CBS, or you can watch via the CBS Sports app or CBS All-Access with a cable or streaming service login. If you don’t have a cable login, you can get a free trial from YouTube TV, Hulu with Live TV, AT&T TV Now, FuboTV, or Sling TV to stream it.

Point Spread, Totals, Odds, Trends

Point spread: Tennessee -7
Point Total: 134
Money line: Kentucky +245, Tennessee -315

  • It’s been a smart move to bet against the Wildcats recently, they’ve gone 0-5-1 ATS in their last six.
  • The over has hit in all of Kentucky’s last five games because of their suspect defense.
  • Tennessee hasn’t fared a ton better ATS, going 3-6 in their last nine.
  • The total has gone over in all but two of the Vols’ last six games.

The Best Bet

These two teams met just two weeks ago in an 82-71 victory for Tennessee. Neither of these teams have fared well ATS as of late, but a point total of 132.5 should be a bar they’ll have no trouble clearing.

Pick: Over 134

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