Sweet 16 Odds & Predictions – Michigan vs. Kansas 3/29/13

Last Updated: March 27th, 2013 by Adam Markowitz (Bankroll Sports Columnist)
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Michigan BasketballOur 2013 NCAA Tournament predictions continue on Friday, March 29th with the Sweet 16. Join us as the #6 Michigan Wolverines and the #2 Kansas Jayhawks go to war in what should be a remarkable opening game of the fourth round of the NCAA Tournament.

March Madness: Michigan Wolverines vs. Kansas Jayhawks
Michigan vs. Kansas Location: Dallas Cowboys Stadium, Arlington, TX
Michigan vs. Kansas Date/Time: Friday, March 29th, 7:37 p.m. (ET)
2013 March Madness On TV: TBS

Key #1: The Wolverines need to contain Jeff Withey
Get used to hearing this for the rest of the tournament for as long as the Jayhawks are in it. At an imposing seven-feet tall, Withey has the type of size that just doesn’t exist in college basketball. He never strays all that far away from the basket, even if his man tries to get him outside. The problem with having a smaller man on him that could at least get him outside of the paint is that someone has to defend him on the other side of the court. That’s the big problem that Big Blue needs to avoid. Withey put up 16 points, 16 boards, and five blocks against an undersized North Carolina outfit the last time out, and there really isn’t going to be much of an answer for him in the Michigan lineup either. The key isn’t going to be stopping Withey, because that isn’t going to happen. They can’t let him get block happy either, as his offensive game seems to feed off of his defensive game. When Withey is rejecting all sorts of shots in the lane, he tends to get himself some more opportunities on the other side of the court, and quite frequently, those shots that he takes are of a very high percentage.

Sweet 16 Odds at WagerWeb Sportsbook
#4 Michigan Wolverines +2
#1 Kansas Jayhawks -2
Over/Under 136
Click Here to Bet Your Sweet 16 Picks!

Key #2: Michigan simply has to get some points on the board
Here are some stats for you that might blow your mind. The Wolverines played some flat out awesome defensive teams this season. Michigan played a total of seven games against Top 25 defensive teams, two against Michigan State, two against Wisconsin, two against Ohio State, and one against Pittsburgh. In games against those teams, the Wolverines averaged just 57.3 points per 40 minutes. (Remember that a game against Ohio State and one against Wisconsin went to overtime.) In Kansas’ last 25 NCAA Tournament games, it has played to the ‘under’ to the tune of a 21-4 record. In that stretch, the team has allowed just 61.4 points per game. In the games that it has lost in the dance since 2007, it has allowed 68.4 points per game, and each of the foes scored at least 66 points against the Jayhawks. In the wins that it has had in that run, it has allowed 59.7 points per game and has only allowed more than 65 points twice in those games. That’s just a remarkably consistent stat for Head Coach Bill Self and the gang, and if Michigan doesn’t plan on getting into the 60s in this one, it isn’t going to end up winning the game.


Key #3: Glenn Robinson III has to continue to avoid being a no-show
The Big Dog’s son has had himself a very interesting first year with the Wolverines. He averaged 11.0 points and 5.5 rebounds per game, and he really did show tremendous flashes of athleticism along the way. Robinson though, was wildly inconsistent throughout the season. He scored eight points or fewer 12 times this season in 35 games. In those games where he scored eight or fewer, the Wolverines averaged just 68.3 points per game. They went 6-6 SU and 3-9 ATS. In games in which Robinson scored at least nine points, Michigan went 22-1 SU and 13-7-1 ATS. When you take out the games against teams that aren’t dancing, what’s left are an 0-6 SU record and a 1-5 ATS mark. When Robinson did score at least nine points against tourney teams this year, Big Blue is 8-1 SU and 7-2 ATS. That’s a humongous overlay, and it’s further proof that the Wolverines really need Robinson to step it up and remain a consistent player if they want to have any realistic chance of coming away with a ‘W’.

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Posted in NCAA Basketball - Last Updated on Wednesday, March 27th, 2013 @ 12:30 am (EST)
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