Tuesday College Basketball Betting: Kentucky A Slim Underdog Vs Tennessee

Kentucky Wildcats forward Oscar Tshiebwe celebrates an SEC basketball victory over the Florida Gators at Rupp Arena
Image Credit: Jordan Prather-USA TODAY Sports

The Tuesday college basketball betting menu warrants a fire emoji or two.

For starters, college basketball fans will be treated to a pair of top-20 conference clashes (No. 4 Kentucky at No. 16 Tennessee and No. 10 Villanova at No. 8 Providence). Additionally, four other ranked programs — No. 9 Duke (vs. Wake Forest), No. 15 Wisconsin (at Indiana), No. 19 Michigan State (at Penn State), and No. 20 Texas (at Oklahoma) — could be on upset alert.

On paper, the Tuesday college basketball betting slate looks like the best we’ve seen in a single night since conference seasons began in earnest after New Year’s. So are we headed for a chaotic night of upsets? Or will the favorites take care of business both on the court and at the wagering window?

Props.com breaks down the Tuesday college basketball betting odds for a trio of high-profile games: Kentucky-Tennessee, Villanova-Providence, and Wake Forest-Duke.

College basketball betting odds via DraftKings and updated as of 2:15 p.m. ET on Feb. 15.

No. 4 Kentucky Vs No. 16 Tennessee

Tennessee Volunteers guard Santiago Vescovi (left) dribbles the ball as he tries to maneuver around South Carolina Gamecocks guard Erik Stevenson (right) during an SEC basketball game
Image Credit: Randy Sartin-USA TODAY Sports

Tipoff/TV: 9 p.m. ET/ESPN
Kentucky: 21-4 SU (10-2 SEC)/12-13 ATS
Tennessee: 18-6 SU (9-3 SEC)/14-10 ATS
Spread/Total: Tennessee -1.5 (-110)/141 (Under -120)
Last meeting: Exactly a month ago, Kentucky hammered the Vols 107-79 as a 4.5-point home favorite (Jan. 15, 2022)
Did you know: Prior to the Wildcats’ blowout of Tennessee at Rupp Arena, the road team had been on a 5-0 SU/ATS run in this rivalry

About Kentucky: The Wildcats have won six in a row and 10 of their last 11, with an average victory margin of 13.6 points during the latter run. On Saturday, Kentucky crushed Florida 78-57 as a 10-point home favorite, falling to 3-5 ATS in its last eight. Tuesday’s game in Knoxville kicks off a difficult stretch in which John Calipari’s crew will face four NCAA Tournament-worthy schools over 11 days (at Tennessee, vs. Alabama, vs. LSU, at Arkansas). The Wildcats lead all SEC opponents in scoring offense (81.3 ppg, 9th nationally), field-goal shooting (49.1%), 3-point proficiency (35.6%), rebounds (41.2 per game), and assists (17.1 per contest).

About Tennessee: The Volunteers have won seven consecutive SEC games, including Saturday’s 73-64 victory over Vanderbilt, coming up just short as an 10.5-point home chalk. Among SEC schools, Tennessee ranks first in scoring defense (allowing 63.1 ppg, 34th nationally), second in 3-point proficiency (34.5%), second in assists (16.8 per game), and third in steals (9.9 per contest). However, the Vols are ninth in field-goal shooting (43.6%).

What’s At Stake: Kentucky (10-2) and Tennessee (9-3) are both chasing 11-1 Auburn in the SEC standings, with only the Volunteers facing the No. 2 Tigers over the final weeks of the regular season (Feb. 26 in Knoxville). The Wildcats (3rd) and Vols (10th) are among the top-10 schools in the NCAA’s NET rankings, suggesting both are in the running for top-3 seeds in next month’s NCAA Tournament.

Players To Watch

Kentucky forward Oscar Tshiebwe, who had 27 points and 19 rebounds in Saturday’s 21-point win over Florida, is currently favored to win the John R. Wooden Player of the Year Award. The 6-foot-8 junior leads the Wildcats in scoring (16.4 ppg), rebounding (15.3 per game), and field-goal shooting (60.2 percent). He’s recorded 19 double-doubles in 31 games, including the last seven in a row.

Tennessee guard Santiago Vescovi is averaging a team-high 13.6 ppg, and he ranks second in assists (3.3 per game) and steals (1.8 per game), and fourth in rebounding (4.5 per game). The 6-foot-3 junior has scored in double figures in 20 of 24 contests, including 13 of his last 14. He led the Vols with 20 points in last month’s loss at Kentucky.

Notable Trends

  • Kentucky is 3-8 ATS in its last 11 as an underdog (but 2-0 SU/ATS last two)
  • Kentucky is 1-11 ATS in its last 12 Tuesday games
  • Tennessee is 0-3 ATS in its last three at home (but all as a double-digit favorite)
  • Under is 6-2 in Kentucky’s last eight on the road
  • The SU winner has covered the spread in the last 13 series meetings
  • Favorite and underdog have alternated SU/ATS wins in the last seven in this rivalry
  • Over is 7-2 in the last nine series battles (2-2 in games at Tennessee)

Kentucky Vs Tennessee Odds and Action

UPDATE 6:45 P.M. ET: Tennessee landed on WynnBet’s Tuesday college basketball betting board as a 1-point favorite and is up to -2. Ticket count is 3/1-plus on Kentucky, but money is running almost dead even. The total rose from 139.5 to 141, with ticket count 3/1 and money 2/1 on the Over.

No. 10 Villanova Vs No. 8 Providence

Providence Friars guard Al Durham prepares to shoot against the Georgetown Hoyas during a Big East basketball game
Image Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

Tipoff/TV: 8 p.m. ET/CBS Sports Network
Villanova: 19-6 SU (12-3 Big East)/13-11-1 ATS
Providence: 21-2 SU (11-1 Big East)/14-9 ATS
Spread/Total: Villanova -4 (-115)/132
Last meeting: Providence upset Villanova 54-52 as a 4.5-point home underdog (March 6, 2021)
Did you know: Providence is 7-0 SU/ATS as an underdog this season

About Villanova-Providence: Villanova has won three and a row and six of seven dating back to Jan. 16, with all six victories by six points or more. That includes Saturday’s 73-67 win over Seton Hall, though the Wildcats fell short as 9-point home favorites. Providence enters Tuesday riding an eight-game winning streak that has vaulted the Friars unranked to inside the top 10. It hasn’t always been easy, though, as evidenced by Providence’s 76-73 overtime win over DePaul on Saturday as a hefty 9-point home chalk. The Friars are just 4-5 ATS in their last nine outings. In Big East circles, Villanova ranks first in 3-point proficiency (35.9%). However, Providence rates in the bottom half of the 11-team league in scoring, rebounding, assists, steals and blocks.

Notable Trends

  • Villanova has followed a 6-0 ATS surge with a 2-6 ATS nosedive (all as a favorite)
  • Villanova is 6-13 ATS in its last 19 road games (0-3 last three)
  • Providence is 0-4 ATS in its last four at home (all as a favorite)
  • Providence is 18-6 ATS in its last 24 as an underdog
  • Over is 5-2 in Villanova’s last seven road games
  • Over is 4-1 in Providence’s last five at home
  • Villanova is 5-2 SU/ATS in the last seven series meetings (all as a favorite)
  • Under is 7-2 in the last nine head-to-head battles (4-0 last four)
  • Total points scored in the last four series clashes: 124, 114, 127, 106

Villanova Vs Providence Odds and Action

UPDATE 6:45 P.M. ET: WynnBet pegged Villanova a 5-point favorite and this morning dipped to -4.5, where the line stuck the rest of the day. Point-spread ticket count is dead even, but spread money is almost 5/1 on underdog Providence. The total advanced from 130 to 132 by lunchtime today, then inched back to 131.5 in the past 30 minutes. Ticket count is 4/1 and money beyond 7/1 on the Over.

Wake Forest Vs No. 9 Duke

Duke Blue Devils forward Paolo Banchero (right) drives to the basket against Wake Forest Demon Deacons forward Isaiah Mucius (left) during an ACC basketball game
Image Credit: Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports

Tipoff/TV: 7 p.m. ET/ESPN
Wake Forest: 20-6 SU (10-5 ACC)/16-10 ATS
Duke: 21-4 SU (11-3 ACC)/14-9-2 ATS
Spread/Total: Duke -9.5 (-115)/150.5 (Under -115)
Last meeting: Duke traveled to Winston-Salem, N.C., last month and dominated the Demon Deacons 76-64 as a 6-point road chalk (Jan. 12)
Did you know: Eight of the last nine series meetings — including five in a row — have been double-digit blowouts, with Duke going 8-1 SU/6-3 ATS

About Wake Forest-Duke: Wake Forest is coming off Saturday’s 76-72 upset loss to Miami as a 6.5-point home favorite. Still, the Demon Deacons are on a 7-2 SU/ATS run, which has pushed the team into the top 40 in the NCAA’s NET rankings. That indicates that Wake is approaching NCAA Tournament “bubble” territory. Duke has won seven of its last eight (5-3 ATS), including Saturday’s 72-61 victory over Boston College, though the Blue Devils missed as a 14-point home chalk. Within the ACC, Duke (79.9 ppg) and Wake Forest (78.6 ppg) rank first and third in scoring offense, respectively. The Demon Deacons (49.1%) and Blue Devils (48.4%) also rate 1-2 in field-goal shooting.

Notable Trends

  • Wake Forest is 4-1 SU/ATS on the road during its ongoing 7-2 SU/ATS run
  • Wake Forest is 5-1 ATS in its last six as a road underdog
  • Duke is 5-2 ATS in its last seven overall
  • Road team is 6-2 ATS in the last eight series meetings
  • Last month’s Duke-Wake Forest game stayed Under the total, ending a 4-0 Over stretch in this rivalry

Wake Forest Vs Duke Odds and Action

UPDATE 6 P.M. ET: Duke is down to a 9.5-point favorite in TwinSpires’ Tuesday college basketball betting market, after opening at -10.5 and making a stop at -10. An hour before tipoff, Wake Forest is netting 65% of tickets and 62% of money on the spread. “Wake Forest is a public ‘dog tonight,” TwinSpires trading analyst Zachary Lucas said. The total rose from 147.5 to 150.5, with the Over seeing 57% of tickets/66% of cash. “A mix of public and sharp money on the Over,” Lucas said.

Jay Clemons
Jay Clemons remains the only sports writer on the planet to capture Cynposis Media's national award for Sports Blog Of The Year (beating out NBA.com, MLB.com, PGATour.com, The Players' Tribune in 2015), along with the Fantasy Sports Writers Association's pre-eminent award for Best Football Writer (2008). Through the years, Mr. Clemons has been a key figure with numerous blue-chip sports/media brands, namely the Detroit Lions, Sports Illustrated, FOX Sports, Bleacher Report and now American Affiliate's Props.com. Clemons, a graduate of Michigan State University and Wayne State University, has been an on-camera Web-TV host for Sports Illustrated, Bleacher Report and FOX Sports. In 2015, he also became the first-ever sports journalism professor at Kennesaw State University in suburban Atlanta. And for the betting community, covering the last two years of the sports calendar (2019-20 / 2020-21), Clemons enjoyed a rock-solid winning rate of 59.6 percent with point-spread and over/under selections (NFL, college football and college basketball.)