Final Four MOP Odds

Final Four MOP Odds

With a Final Four chock-full of elite schools, there is no shortage of talented candidates aiming to bring home the coveted Most Outstanding Player award. Kentucky’s dominant frontcourt still leads the way, but Duke’s own pair of low post wunderkinds aren’t far behind. And then there’s probable Player of the Year Frank Kaminsky, who along with his Wisconsin teammates faces the unenviable task of taking down both the Wildcats and possibly the Blue Devils to claim his prize. And what about the Spartans, the true underdogs who will need herculean efforts to topple two of the very best teams in America. Here are the odds for the 2015 MOP.

Karl-Anthony Towns (UK) 3/1 – Sure, Towns lit up Notre Dame in the Midwest Final, but he totaled 9 points and 9 rebounds in wins over West Virginia and Cincinnati. Kentucky’s biggest strength is a hindrance to individual accolades: depth. Any one of eight players could go off in a game, which makes predicting which Wildcat will deliver the biggest performance a chore. At any rate, Towns will have to shine versus the Badgers’ active trio of big men if Kentucky hopes to march on.

Willie Cauley-Stein (UK) 4/1 – See Towns above. Cauley-Stein crashes the glass, rejects shots, and runs the court like a point guard. Problem is he hasn’t taken more than six shots all tournament long. Then again, Kentucky does most of their damage in the paint, so he is a decent bet to get hot, especially with Towns getting most of the attention.

Jahlil Okafor/Justise Winslow (Duke) 5/1 – Okafor struggled during the second weekend, but he’s always a threat to explode, and he did notch 17 points and 5 rebounds in the November meeting with Michigan State. However, Winslow is playing the best of all the Devils, having recorded double-digit rebounds in four of his last five outings. He also does something that Okafor doesn’t: play defense. If Duke and Coach K win a fifth title it will be largely due to Winslow’s two-way abilities.

Frank Kaminsky (Wis) 8/1 – The only reason Kamisnky isn’t topping the list is because oddsmakers don’t think Wisconsin will beat Kentucky. Makes perfect sense, but big Frank is by far the best all-around player remaining in the Field. It will take all of the Wildcats’ low post monsters to contain the Badgers’ behemoth.

Sam Dekker (Wis) 8/1 – How good has Dekker been in the Tournament? He’s racked 87 points and 22 rebounds in four games. He’s hit 13-27 from beyond the arc and 10-13 from the free-throw stripe. Kaminsky will need help to spring the upset and Dekker has the skills to get the job done.

Travis Trice (MSU) 12/1 – A smallish senior point guard who can beat defenders off the dribble and from the perimeter? Sounds similar to last year’s MOP, Shabazz Napier of UConn. Trice is the perfect Tom Izzo player in that he works for everything he gets on both ends of the floor. Don’t sleep on this kid.

Branden Dawson (MSU) 20/1 – Like Trice, Dawson is an experienced player who uses grit and smarts to get the upper hand on opponents. He’s been a beast on the boards in March and dropped 18 and 9 on Duke back in the November.