ESPN has released a slate of National Champion, National Player of the Year and Coach of the Year predictions, and just one of 26 ESPN analysts picked the Kentucky Wildcats to win it all.
That expert was Adam Rittenberg, who had Wichita State, Michigan State, Duke and Kentucky in his Final Four.
Kentucky was also picked to make the Final Four by four analysts, including former Georgetown head coach John Thompson III, ESPN announcer Jimmy Dykes and ESPN analyst Alex Scarborough.
The other experts overwhelmingly favored Michigan State, as they received 14 of the 26 title picks. Michigan State star Miles Bridges received 20 picks for National Player of the Year, and Tom Izzo received eight picks for Coach of the Year. That makes it pretty clear that ESPN likes what Michigan State has going on this year.
Kentucky’s John Calipari received no picks for Coach of the Year, and no Kentucky player was picked for Player of the Year.
SEC foe Florida also received a pick for National Champion. Duke got a few picks, Arizona got a few picks, and Xavier and Kansas each got one pick.
Kentucky is talented but young (as we’ve heard so many times), and the experts might be holding that against them.