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Kentucky vs. Louisville: analysis, betting trends, expert picks and prediction

Breaking down Cats vs. Cards with a prediction.

NCAA Football: Kentucky at Louisville Jamie Rhodes-USA TODAY Sports

Some of Kentucky’s best, as well as their worst, has came during the Governor’s Cup against their cross-state rival Louisville Cardinals.

The Wildcats’ 2019 campaign has certainly been a roller-coaster ride, with the final hours of their regular season on the horizon. Can Kentucky make it two consecutive seasons with a win over Louisville?

Only time (and their play on the field today) will tell.

Analysis

ESPN’s Football Power Index currently shows Kentucky as a -3.5 favorite and is giving the Wildcats a 69.2% chance of defeat. Oddly enough, Louisville actually has a better record (7-4) than Kentucky (6-5), but of course, the Wildcats’ play top-to-bottom one of the toughest schedules each season due to being in the Southeastern Conference.

So, what should we expect from the Wildcats on Saturday?

Both teams rush the football extremely well, so this game could very well come down to which offense protects the football and which defense can limit their opponent’s breakout runs for big plays.

OddsShark currently predicts a narrow finish, with Kentucky winning by a calculated score of 31.9-30.3. While the Cardinals would cover the spread of 3.5, Kentucky will gladly take a second straight win over their red bird rival.

Betting Trends

Kentucky

  • Kentucky are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games.
  • The total has gone UNDER in 6 of Kentucky’s last 8 games.
  • Kentucky is 4-2 SU in their last 6 games.
  • The total has gone OVER in 4 of Kentucky’s last 5 games against Louisville.
  • Kentucky is 6-0 ATS in their last 6 games at home.
  • Kentucky is 0-5 ATS in their last 5 games when playing at home against Louisville.
  • Kentucky is 2-5 SU in their last 7 games against an opponent in the Atlantic Coast conference.
  • The total has gone OVER in 4 of Kentucky’s last 5 games played in November.
  • The total has gone UNDER in 6 of Kentucky’s last 8 games played on a Saturday.

Louisville

  • Louisville is 4-2 ATS in their last 6 games.
  • The total has gone OVER in 5 of Louisville’s last 7 games.
  • Louisville is 5-2 SU in their last 7 games.
  • Louisville is 6-2 SU in their last 8 games against Kentucky.
  • The total has gone OVER in 5 of Louisville’s last 6 games on the road.
  • Louisville is 5-0 ATS in their last 5 games when playing on the road against Kentucky.
  • Louisville is 1-5 ATS in their last 6 games against an opponent in the Southeast conference.
  • The total has gone OVER in 6 of Louisville’s last 7 games played in November.
  • Louisville is 8-0 SU in their last 8 games played in Week 14.

Expert Picks

Pete Fiutak of College Football News is expecting a result of an upset via Louisville, taking down Kentucky 24-20.

The Courier-Journal in Louisville asked their sports staff for a prediction on the game, which featured a 5-2 return in favor of the Wildcats.

In Lexington, Mark Story of the Herald-Leader is predicting a Kentucky victory by a score of 27-24.

Story’s colleague, Josh Moore, is going with a similar prediction that favors Kentucky in a 29-24 decision.

Prediction

Kentucky has been victim of slow starts this season, and that simply won’t cut it on Saturday. The Wildcats’ will have to take care of the football, make timely blocks across the offensive line and play better than they have so far this season on special teams. Through the air, Kentucky can set up plays off play-action but their identity is carrying the football so don’t expect much different from head coach Mark Stoops and his team. Neither team has dominated this year, but Kentucky seems to be slightly better as we head into Saturday.

Final Score: Kentucky 31, Louisville 29