Simulation predicts Kentucky to beat Connecticut in the 2014 National Championship
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A seven and eight seed will square off Monday night in Dallas with a national championship on the line. Despite the seeds, the game is void of any Cinderella storyline, as both Connecticut and Kentucky are among the most successful programs in college basketball, and both proved their merit in their respective routes to Dallas. Will John Calipari's freshman prevail or will Shabazz Napier and the Huskies carry the day?
Using our college basketball simulation engine, we "played" Connecticut vs. Kentucky 1,001 times to predict the game's outcome. The Wildcats were victorious in 53.5 percent of simulations, outscoring the Huskies 69.7-69.1.
2014 National Championship Prediction
|Matchup||Win %||Avg. Score|
|Kentucky Wildcats||53.5||69.7||Sample Boxscore|
|vs. Connecticut Huskies||46.5||69.1||Simulate Title Game|
We also selected a sample boxscore from our 1,001 simulations. In the sample game, Kentucky won 72-68, led by 16 points from Aaron Harrison. Julius Randle chipped in a double-double with 13 points and 11 rebounds, while James Young and Alex Poythress also scored in double figures.
Napier had an off-night for Connecticut, making just three of 13 attempts on his way to 14 points. He did add seven assists and seven rebounds though. Ryan Boatright totaled 19 points for the Huskies.
Both teams struggled to score, with Kentucky making 38.3 percent of its baskets and UConn not much better at 38.6 percent. The Wildcats enjoyed a significant advantage on the boards, outmuscling Connecticut for a 45-31 edge in rebounds.
The national championship is Kentucky's second in three years. Of the current roster, only walk-ons Jarrod Polson and Brian Long logged minutes two seasons ago.
For the Huskies, the game marks their first loss in four title game appearances. Connecticut won national championships in 1999, 2004 and 2011.
Remember, you can simulate the 2014 NCAA National Championship as many times as you want for FREE using our SimMatchup tool.
Jake Westrich is the Digital Content Coordinator for WhatIfSports.com. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.