The Second Round of the NCAA Tournament matchup between the No. 4 Kansas Jayhawks (26-9) and the No. 5 Auburn Tigers (27-9) will take place at Vivint Smart Home Arena. The game’s Over/Under (O/U) has been set at 148 points with Auburn opening as a 2-point favorite. Tip-off is scheduled for 9:40 p.m. ET on Saturday, March 23, 2019.
Auburn Tigers vs. Kansas Jayhawks Free Preview
In the First Round, the Tigers edged the No. 12 New Mexico State Aggies, 78-77. With 13 points and five rebounds, Chuma Okeke put together a solid performance for Auburn. The Tigers forced 16 turnovers and had an effective field goal percentage of 0.561 (above their season average of 0.541).
The Jayhawks come in on a high note after thoroughly outplaying the No. 13 Northeastern Huskies in the First Round, 87-53. With 25 points on 9-for-16 shooting, Dedric Lawson was the top scorer from either team. The Jayhawks, who came into the game averaging an effective field goal percentage of 0.523, had a phenomenal mark of 0.623 and had an offensive rebounding percentage of 35.7 (above their season average of 29.7).
This has potential to be a mistake-prone game for the offense of Kansas. Kansas ranks 200th in the NCAA in ball protection (turnover percentage of 18.9 percent), while the disruptive defense of Auburn forces the most turnovers in the NCAA (25.6 percent). Moreover, the Tigers’ 18th-ranked offense (offensive efficiency of 114.4) will battle against the Jayhawks’ 58th-ranked defense (defensive efficiency of 98.2).
Of Auburn’s 35 games with betting action, 18 have finished over the projected point total, while 20 of Kansas’ 35 games have finished over the O/U total. Both teams have respectable straight up (SU) records (27-9 for Auburn; 26-9 for Kansas), but the Tigers hold a slight advantage against the spread (ATS). Auburn is 17-14-4 ATS, while the Jayhawks are 15-19-1.
Auburn Tigers vs. Kansas Jayhawks Prediction
Prediction: SU Winner – Kansas, ATS Winner – Kansas, O/U – Under
The Tigers rank 19th in blocks per game (4.8) while the Jayhawks rank 138th in blocks allowed per game (3.4).
Auburn averages 14.4 assists per game, which ranks 83rd in the nation. Kansas ranks 147th in assists allowed per game (13.0).
Auburn ranks fourth in three pointers attempted per game (30.1) while Kansas ranks 277th in three pointers allowed per game (25.5).
The Jayhawks rank 39th in rebounds per game (38.3) while the Tigers rank 207th (34.3).
Auburn ranks third in steals per game (9.4) while Kansas ranks 160th in steals allowed per game (6.5).
The Jayhawks’ average margin of victory in their last five games has been 10.4, up from 6.1 for the season.
During their last five games, the Tigers have scored an average of 76.2 points per game (1.2 below their season average) and allowed an average of 67.6 points per game (1.1 above their season average).