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Kentucky vs. Texas A&M viewing info, odds, what to watch for, and predictions

It’s been an upset-filled week for top-25 teams on the road. Will Kentucky avoid a similar fate in College Station?

DJ Wagner. Huddle. Dylan Ballard - A Sea Of Blue

Kentucky Basketball vs. Texas A&M Aggies

  • Date: January 13th, 2024
  • Time: 2:00 pm ET
  • TV Channel: ESPN has today’s TV coverage.
  • Announcers: Dan Shulman and Jay Bilas will call the action for ESPN.
  • Location: Reed Arena in College Station, Texas.
  • Online Stream: Stream the game online with WatchESPN and the ESPN app.
  • Radio: Tom Leach and Jack Givens have the UK radio call on the UK Sports Radio Network.
  • Replay: WatchESPN and the SEC Network (check local listings).
  • Rosters: UK | A&M
  • Stats to Know: UK | A&M
  • KenPom: UK | A&M
  • Team Sheets: UK | A&M

What are your predictions for Kentucky vs. Texas A&M? Let us know in the comments section!

The Kentucky Wildcats are 2-0 in SEC play after wins at Florida and at home vs. Missouri.

With four of the top five college basketball teams losing this week, Kentucky could make the jump into the top five of the AP Poll in January for just the second time since 2017.

Standing in their way will be a motivated Texas A&M Aggies squad in College Station on Saturday. This feels like a must-win game for the Aggies, who have started 0-2 in SEC play, so the Cats must come ready for another 40+ minute war if they want to get to 3-0 in league play.

The Aggies debuted in the preseason poll at No. 15, one spot ahead of Kentucky, but with a 9-6 record, they have fallen out of the others receiving votes category. Things seem to be trending in the wrong direction, as they have lost four of their last six games, with their two wins coming against sub-300 KenPom teams.

That said, four of A&M’s six losses have come against ranked teams by an average of seven points. The Aggies certainly have the talent to challenge Kentucky, and a sold-out College Station crowd will give them an added advantage.

Let’s take a look at what to watch for in the matchup.

Control the Boards & Limit Second-Chance Points

Playing the best rebounding team in the country last Saturday, the Wildcats will play another top 10 rebounding team in Texas A&M. The Aggies average just under 43 rebounds per game, ranking eighth nationally, but where they really excel is offensive rebounding.

A&M ranks first nationally in offensive rebounds per game (18.3 RPG) and offensive rebounding percentage (44.6%).

Kentucky who was a top-three offensive rebounding team in the country the last two seasons with Oscar Tshiebwe, averages just over 12 offensive rebounds per game and a 37.7 offensive rebounding percentage.

One reason the Aggies attack the offensive rebounds hard is they don’t shoot very well at all. In fact, they are the second-worst shooting Power Five team behind Rutgers, hitting just over 40% of their shots.

That said, the two biggest threats on the glass will be their big men Henry Coleman III and Andersson Garcia, who combine to average more than 17 rebounds per game, including eight offensive boards.

Fortunately, Kentucky’s guards have rebounded fairly well much of the season, but the bigs must show more effort in College Station to get the win.

Slow Down Wade Taylor

A&M is led by preseason SEC Player of the Year, Wade Taylor IV, who leads the team in scoring, assists, and steals. A dynamic playmaker at creating for himself and his teammates, Taylor is the motor of the team.

Taylor has a usage rate of 31.7%, ranking in the top 25 nationally, so expect the ball to be in his hands plenty on Saturday. He’s also fourth in the SEC in scoring at 17.3 points per game but on an inefficient 42.8 effective field goal percentage while averaging four assists per game.

Taylor has a tendency to try to do too much if pressured, which can result in turnovers and bad shots. If Kentucky’s backcourt can pressure Taylor into mistakes, they can limit A&M’s offense and push the slow pace A&M will look to play with.

Win the Hustle Plays

Buzz Williams has always been a tough and gritty coach, and he has instilled that in his Texas A&M teams. As we have seen this week with four of the AP top five teams falling on the road, winning conference road games is tough.

The team that wants it more, dives on the floor for loose balls, flies around on defense, and reduces second-chance points could be the one that wins this game.

Will Kentucky show the will to fight like there’s no tomorrow? Expect that kind of effort from the Aggies, so matching it is a must to win.

Opposing Players to Watch

G Wade Taylor IV, 6-feet, 175 lbs

  • 17.3 PPG (4th in SEC)
  • 4.0 APG (7th in SEC)
  • 2.4 SPG (2nd in SEC)

F Henry Coleman III, 6-foot-8, 245 lbs

  • 12.5 PPG
  • 8.4 RPG (3rd in SEC)
  • 61.3% FG (2nd in SEC)

G Tyrece Radford, 6-foot-3, 190 lbs

  • 12.2 PPG
  • 5.1 RPG
  • 2.2 APG