Game time: 7:10 pm EST on Thursday, March 15th.
Location: Taco Bell Arena in Boise, Idaho
Announcers: Brian Anderson, Chris Webber and Lisa Byington will have the call.
Odds: UK opened as a 6-point favorite, but the line has dropped to 5.
Radio: Tom Leach and Mike Pratt will have the UK radio network call on 630 AM and 98.1 FM in Lexington. Go here for all radio listings.
Predictions: ESPN’s BPI predictor gives UK a 59.6-percent chance of winning. KenPom gives UK a 67-percent chance of winning and projects a 73-70 win for the Cats from Lexington. NumberFire also projects a 73-70 win for UK. TeamRankings predicts UK to win 75-69.
Projected Davidson Starters:
- G Jon Axel Gudmundsson (13.4 PPG, 5.1 APG)
- G KiShawn Pritchett (6.2 PPG, 2.2 RPG)
- G Kellan Grady (17.9 PPG, 3.3 RPG)
- F Peyton Aldridge (21.3 PPG, 7.8 RPG)
- F Oskar Michelsen (5.5 PPG, 2.5 RPG)
Projected UK Starters:
- G Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (13.2 PPG, 4.9 APG)
- G Hamidou Diallo (10.4 PPG, 3.7 RPG)
- F Kevin Knox (15.7 PPG, 5.3 RPG)
- F PJ Washington (10.4 PPG, 5.4 RPG)
- C Nick Richards (5.8 PPG, 5.0 RPG)
Kentucky’s strong SEC Tournament performance has resulted in the Wildcats meeting another set of Wildcats as they take on one of the most well-known mid-majors in college basketball: the Davidson Wildcats.
Davidson will come into this UK game with a 21-11 record. They finished third in the Atlantic 10 but won the conference tournament to get an automatic bid. Davidson is led by Peyton Aldridge, who averages 21.5 points per game and 7.8 rebounds per game, both team highs.
Davidson’s leading passer is Jon Axel Gudmundsson, who averages 13.4 PPG, 6.1 RPG and 5.1 assists per game. Davidson also has a third player averaging double figures, Kellan Grady, who is averaging 18 PPG.
Davidson played several major opponents this year, but didn’t fare well against Power 5 teams. They lost to the North Carolina Tar Heels, 85-75, and to the Virginia Cavaliers, 80-60. However, Davidson did defeat top-25 Rhode Island twice in three matchups this year, with the last one coming in the A-10 Conference Tournament Championship.
But these Wildcats also have losses to Appalachian State, Hawaii, and Richmond (twice). If not for those slip ups, we could easily be talking about a 9 or 10 seed for Davidson, but alas, they’ll be a 12 seed in arguably the toughest region.
The ESPN BPI ranks Davidson at 34, while KenPom has them at 55.
This will be the fourth appearance in the NCAA Tournament in this decade for Davidson. The team’s last appearance was in 2015. The Wildcats made it to the second round before losing to the Iowa Hawkeyes, 83-52.
UK owns a 1-0 record all-time against Davidson in the NCAA Tournament, defeating the Wildcats 75-55 in the opening round in 1986 in Charlotte. With a win over Davidson, UK would face the winner of the No. 4 seed Arizona Wildcats (27-7) vs No. 13 seed Buffalo Bulls (26-8) matchup.
Here is how you can watch and follow Thursday’s action: