The Kentucky Wildcats are entering the new year coming off arguably their best victory of the season.
An eight-point overtime win over the No. 7-ranked Louisville Cardinals will rival the team’s first primetime victory over Michigan State for their marquee win of the season.
After losing two straight games in Vegas prior to their in-state rivalry game, the Wildcats needed their victory over Louisville to strengthen both their belief in themselves and the country’s belief in them.
Well, it did that.
After a 3-2 December which included losses to Utah and Ohio State, the Wildcats’ odds to win the 2020 national championship have marginally decreased according to BetOnline.ag.
The odds have moved from 10-1 to 12-1.
While that doesn’t sound good, the Wildcats still are tied for the third-best odds in the nation although not even being ranked with the top 15. Had the odds not changed, they’d be tied with Duke for the second-best odds. They’re currently tied with Michigan State and Louisville, both teams they’ve beaten this season.
The Wildcats likely won’t be heavily favored going into the tournament even if they have impressive home stretch with conference play starting in January. The reason why is because the team’s inconsistent shooting.
They found their rhythm against Louisville, but they’ve struggled outside of that matchup. It’s been noticeable and hurt them against Ohio State and Utah. However, if they get hot, just like any other team, they’ll be a force in March.
They have size, tenacity, and dynamic guard play to carry them. The only question remaining is if this team can finally put it all together. That, for now, has yet to consistently been seen.
The team’s toughest tests of the year are over, and they passed. That’s why their odds are still among the best even with three losses.
Here is a look at the best odds to win the 2020 NCAA Tournament:
Team - 12/2/19 odds - 1/3/20 odds
Kansas - 10/1 - 8/1
Duke - 10/1 - 10/1
Gonzaga - 16/1 - 10/1
Ohio State - 22/1 - 10/1
Kentucky - 10/1 - 12/1
Louisville - 12/1 - 12/1
Michigan State - 9/1 - 12/1
Maryland - 25/1 - 16/1
Michigan - 20/1 - 16/1
Oregon - 14/1 - 16/1
Baylor - 33/1 - 20/1
Florida - 20/1 - 20/1
North Carolina - 16/1 - 25/1
Virginia - 20/1 - 25/1