As one season closes, another is set to start in a mere six months and it is never too early to put a futures bet on who you think are the group cutting down the nets at the Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta following April. The Virginia Cavaliers claimed the 2019 title, their first in school history, but they sit on the oddsboard, two spots behind the Kentucky Wildcats, who would be the +500 favorite.
BetOnline has Kentucky as the favorite to win against the 2020 college hoops championship at +500 followed closely by Duke at +600, Virginia at +650, Michigan State at +800, and Michigan and North Carolina in +1200 to round out the leading teams on the oddsboard.
Tread Lightly with Kentucky
Kentucky had a powerful 2018-19 effort, placing together a 30-7 record en route to an Elite Eight berth before falling to Auburn in overtime. Undoubtedly head coach John Calipari will possess the Wildcats playing at a high level, but he’ll have to enter the season with rather a different appearance. Four of Kentucky’s starting five are very likely to graduate or be drafted in the NBA since Reid Travis is a senior and P.J. Washington, Keldon Johnson and Tyler Herro will probably be moving pro.
All isn’t lost, though, as the Wildcats have done a great job recruiting for the upcoming season, procuring two 2019 McDonald’s All-Americans, shooting guard Tyrese Maxey and little forward Khalil Whitney. I anticipate sophomores Immanuel Quickley and E.J. Montgomery to lead the fee and will work nicely with the incoming freshmen. With their brand new look, I’d be hesitant to lay a wager on this bar in +500 at this stage.
Kansas May be Well-Balanced and Experienced
Kansas had a very interesting 2018-19, showing flashes of brilliance and being rated in the top five in the AP survey for eight months, including two weeks at the top spot. Overall, the Jayhawks finished the year with a 26-10 record, falling to Auburn in the Round of 32. Kansas was a Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde club when it came to house and away splits, heading a perfect 16-0 in Allen Fieldhouse but only 3-8 in true road games — quite confusing results.
The Jayhawks needed to battle through accidents, losing guard Lagerald Vick for its season in early February. He is a senior and won’t be back next year. Furthermore, junior center Udoka Azubuike played only nine matches in 2018-19. However, Kansas, despite those big holes in the frontcourt and backcourt, nevertheless had a Round of 32 look. The Jayhawks should be feisty this forthcoming season as I do not anticipate Azubuike to be drafted and Vick are their only loss, so chances of +2000 provide adequate price.
Auburn Providing Best Value
Head coach Bruce Pearl has to be proud of the effort his team put in this past season, going 30-10, for example winning the SEC tournament and falling just to eventual national champion Virginia 63-62 in the Final Four. The group had four seniors, including shield Bryce Brown, who headed the team with 15.9 points per game.
On the other hand, the core of the group should come back for the 2019-20 season, most notably Jared Harper and Chuma Okeke, who combined for 27.3 ppg. Harper led the team with 5.8 assists per game, while Okeke was the group leader with 6.8 rebounds per game. Additionally, Pearl has recruited five players that have signed letters of intent, such as little forward Isaac Okoro,who’s the 37th-ranked recruit. I think this group will cause waves and +3300 may be a steal as we near March next year.
Here’s a look at the Complete list of odds for your 2020 college hoops championship:
2019-20 College BASKETBALL Champion Odds
Michigan State +800
North Carolina +1200
Mississippi State +3300
Texas Tech +3300
Florida State +6600
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