No. 1 Kentucky 19.5-Point Chalk Against Illinois State

The NCAA men’s basketball season continues on Monday with the No. 1 ranked Kentucky Wildcats hosting the Illinois State Redbirds in what appears on paper to be a lopsided game in favor of Kentucky.

Odds makers have Kentucky favored by 19.5 points and have not yet released the over/under point total for this game.

Illinois State has started its season 3-4 straight up and 1-4 against the spread, while Kentucky is off to a blistering 6-0 SU and 2-4 ATS start.

The Redbirds on the road are 0-1 SU and ATS, while the Wildcats at home are 4-0 SU and 1-3 ATS.

Tyler Ulis a starting guard for Kentucky has a hyper-extended elbow and is listed as day-to-day. His playing status will be determined at game time.

Kentucky has won each of its first six games this season by 10 points or more but have yet to look dominate in part due to its young roster, which is attempting to find its way at the collegiate level.

Ulis, although just a sophomore, is one of Kentucky’s veterans. However, the team does not lose that much talent without Ulis as both Jamal Murray and Isaiah Briscoe two freshmen guards are loaded with talent.

Last week, Illinois State put a scare into No. 2 ranked Maryland as the Redbirds were ahead with less than six minutes remaining before falling to the Terrapins by 11 points.

Leading the scoring for Illinois State is DeVaughn Akoon-Purcell who is averaging just less than 16 points per game.

Illinois State is noted for playing nearly everyone on the bench at some point in the game. Size will be a huge disadvantage for the Redbirds as their tallest player is 6-foot-11 Daouda Ndiaye, but after him, 6-foot-8 is their tallest.

Murray is leading Kentucky in scoring with an average of 14.8 points per game. Skal Labissiere a fellow freshman is second in scoring at 14.7 points per game with Ulis adding 13.2 per game.

The Wildcats have hit just 29% of their shots from beyond the 3-point arc without any one player stepping up and establishing himself as a threat from downtown as of yet.

Labissiere is a 6-foot-11 forward as a freshman and already has been projected as a top three NBA draft pick in the 2016 draft. However, starting the season he is averaging just 4.7 rebounds per game after 6 games.

Kentucky lost in the championship game to Duke last season, but has won 37 straight games during the regular season.

Kentucky should dominant this game from the start, but often times will need the first half to get into the flow of the game. Look for Kentucky to win easily, but have a hard time covering as 19.5-point chalk.

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