What will Kentucky’s record look like at the end of the season? Thankfully, we’ll know for certain a week from Saturday, but for fun, let’s check in with the latest KenPom and Sagarin predictions.
KenPom: 26-5, 15-3 in the SEC
KenPom has Kentucky losing by three in Knoxville, giving the Cats a 41 percent chance of knocking off the Vols.
|Saturday, March 2||AWAY||Kentucky 71||Tennessee 74||41%|
|Tuesday, March 5||AWAY||Kentucky 73||Ole Miss 68||68%|
|Saturday, March 9||HOME||Kentucky 68||Florida 58||80%|
Even though KenPom predicts a Tennessee win over Kentucky, it also predicts the Volunteers will lose at Auburn to end the regular season, meaning they’ll also finish with a 15-3 conference record. Same goes for LSU, which KenPom believes will lose at Florida on Wednesday. That would leave another three-way tie at the top, with LSU, Kentucky, and Tennessee all sharing the SEC regular season title. Here are KenPom’s projected conference standings:
In this situation, LSU would be the No. 1 seed in the SEC Tournament and Kentucky would get the No. 2 seed over Tennessee thanks to secondary tiebreaker procedures.
Sagarin Predictor: 26-5, 15-3 in the SEC
Kentucky’s current Sagarin Predictor rating is 91.72, sixth best in the country. The home advantage is 3.15. Using those numbers and the ratings of Kentucky’s opponents, the Sagarin Predictor has the Cats losing in Knoxville and beating Ole Miss and Florida to finish the season:
|Saturday, March 2||AWAY||Kentucky 91.72||Tennessee 93.79|
|Tuesday, March 5||AWAY||Kentucky 91.72||Ole Miss 86.40|
|Saturday, March 9||HOME||Kentucky 94.87||Florida 85.93|
Like KenPom, Sagarin Predictor has Tennessee losing to Auburn and LSU losing at Florida.
One stat I wish got more play is Sagarin’s “recent rating,” which weighs recent play more heavily than earlier games to track trends. Based on that metric, Kentucky’s the second best team in the country right now behind North Carolina. Here’s the top five:
1. North Carolina: 97.75
2. Kentucky: 95.48
3. Virginia: 95.34
4. Michigan State: 92.69
5. Gonzaga: 92.01
Tennessee is No. 10 and Duke No. 14, which shows you how vulnerable they are without Zion.
Your turn. Predict Kentucky’s regular season record below: