Bold Predictions for Champions Classic: Kansas vs. Michigan State | Duke vs. Kentucky

Duke Blue Devils head coach Mike Krzyzewski are 3-point favorites against the Kentucky Wildcats in the late game of the Champions Classic.
Duke Blue Devils head coach Mike Krzyzewski are 3-point favorites against the Kentucky Wildcats in the late game of the Champions Classic. / Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports

This week, our team at BetSided has already given out full betting predictions for tonight's Champions Classic at Madison Square Garden, as well as how you can turn $1 into $100 if either team in either game make a three-pointer.

The No. 3 ranked Jayhawks kick off their season as 4.5-point favorites against the Michigan State Spartans with a total of 141. That's 2.5 points lower than where it was posted on Monday morning.

Meanwhile, the Blue Devils are a 3-point favorite against the Wildcats as Mike Krzyzewski coaches in his final season for Duke. The over/under at WynnBET has hovered right near 148.5, coming up from a few days ago at 147.5

In what should be two terrific matchups to begin the college basketball season, here are three bold predictions for how these two games will go down.

Bold Prediction for Kansas vs. Michigan State

Neither team scores more than 70 points

With the total continuing to move towards the under, I don't envision this matchup to be the high-paced game we're expecting from the late game.

The Jayhawks are a solid defensive team with David McCormick in the middle, and while new transfer Remy Martin from Arizona State will be a key addition, Bill Self has already indicated that he's going to be more of a distributor in an offense that relies on a lot of passing and finding open looks, rather than taking teams in isolation.

Michigan State has traditionally been a very reliable defensive-minded team under Tom Izzo, and both teams rank in the top 10 of the KenPom adjusted defensive rankings to start the season.

I'm expecting a very pedestrian offensive performance in the first half, before both teams start to get things figured out a little more in the second.

Our Reed Wallach is taking the UNDER in this matchup as well.

Bold Predictions for Kentucky vs. Duke

The Wildcats Pull off the Upset over the Blue Devils

John Calipari has made it work with some of the most athletic, young, raw talent in the country, but it's been a few years since he's had some reliable, experienced players that play quality minutes and perhaps even be their most important players.

Calipari snagged four transfers from the portal this offseason in Kellan Grady, CJ Fredrick, Sahvir Wheeler and Oscar Tshiebwe. Grady in particular is a lock down shooter from Davidson who can help add some space for Kentucky to work their offense and get some looks down low.

Paolo Banchero Gets a Double-Double in His Duke Debut

Kentucky and Duke have been the two biggest hubs for freshman phenoms over the last decade or so. For tonight, Blue Devils super freshman Paolo Banchero, gets a great opportunity to make his college basketball debut on the national stage of Madison Square Garden.

Longtime ESPN NCAA hoops analyst Jay Bilas has likened him to his former teammate Danny Ferry, and has said on the record that he's as gifted of a big guy at a skill level.

Coach K has raved about how Duke has four different players who can play the point and handle the basketball, leading to plenty of transition and put back opportunities for Banchero inside.

I still expect UK to take down the Dukies, but Banchero will be the player we're all discussing afterwards.

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