As we all know Monday night's tip off will be between the Kentucky Wildcats (1) and the Kansas Jayhawks (2). This game is coming after a very exciting Final Four round. For those of you who missed it Kentucky held off the Louisville Cardinals 69-61 and Kansas defeated Ohio State 64-62 after trailing the majority of the game. Both Kentucky and Kansas did not play particularly well or at least at the caliber that their coaches hold them too. With that being said lets take a look at what we could expect Monday night.
Lets start with our number one seed: Kentucky. Kentucky has had a remarkable season, thus far. But the pressure is all on Kentucky, for anything less than a national championship will not do for Wildcat nation, and the season would be considered a failure. Led by freshman forward Anthony Davis, the Wildcats are a great all around team. Kentucky has one of the nation's best man-to-man defenses and can really amp up the pressure when needed. But shooting nearly 50 percent at the free throw line and having 14 turnovers, as they did against Louisville, is not going to cut it Monday. The Wildcats are going to have to do a better job at preventing second chance opportunities as well. Monday night needs to be the best basketball the Wildcats have played all season because the Jayhawks will definitely not back down.
We have watched Kansas battle through deficits all tournament long, but this game they are going to need to have handle on. Lead by Thomas Robinson, Tyshawn Taylor, and Jeff Withey, the Jayhawks need to come out tougher and sharper than they did against the Buckeyes. Robinson and Withey are going to have to play bigger than they have all season. This is the time for the Jayhawks to shock the world, but not in Lawrence, Kansas where the ultimate is expected from this Jayhawk team.
The last time these two teams met was way back in November, when Kentucky beat Kansas by 10. So with that in mind who do the fans root for? The number 1 seeded Wildcats with the Wooden Player of the Year? Or will they be rooting for the resilient and shocking Jayhawks? 9:23 PM could not come soon enough. I am predicting that Kansas will win this bruising battle with their suffocating defense and their advantage in offensive rebounding will be the critical factors to this battle of college basketball icons.