Kentucky v Auburn
Getty Images

No. 13 Alabama can get a bit closer to winning back-to-back SEC regular-season championships with a victory vs. No. 17 Kentucky on Saturday at Rupp Arena. However, the Wildcats will be eager to bounce back after a heartbreaking loss at the buzzer at LSU on Wednesday.

The SEC showdown on CBS features two of college basketball's three highest-scoring teams as the Crimson Tide enter ranked No. 1 nationally at 91 points per game. UK, meanwhile, is No. 3 at 87.6 per game behind a rotation full of gifted playmakers. Where both teams need to improve over the season's final weeks is on defense. In their two league losses to date, the Crimson Tide (19-7, 11-2 SEC) allowed over 90 points. Those defeats, which came on the road against Tennessee and Auburn, were by 20 and 18 points, respectively.

Kentucky (18-8, 8-5) is gifted enough offensively to surpass 90 points against anyone, and especially against a team like Alabama that is eager to play fast. However, the Wildcats must also defend better than they have for much of this season if they are going to outlast a quality team like the Crimson Tide. UK has dropped four home games already this season, putting it in jeopardy of matching the futile record of six losses inside Rupp Arena established by the 1988-89, 2008-09 and 2020-21 UK teams.

A win over the SEC leaders would go a long way toward smoothing over the frustration of Kentucky's home performance this season. Alabama enters as a projected No. 3 seed for the NCAA Tournament in Jerry Palm's Bracketology, while Kentucky enters as a projected No. 7 seed. 

How to watch Kentucky vs. Alabama live

Date: Feb. 24 | Time: 4 p.m. ET
Location: Rupp Arena -- Lexington, Kentucky
TV: CBS | Live stream: CBSSports.comCBS Sports App (Free)  

Kentucky vs. Alabama prediction, picks

This is destined to be a high-scoring game played at breakneck pace. Both teams are among the best offensively in the country, but both have some defensive issues. Kentucky at its best is capable of beating anyone, but the Crimson Tide are the more consistent team. Rupp Arena hasn't provided its usual home-court edge this season, which opens the door for Alabama to take another step toward the SEC title while adding a fourth Quad 1 victory to its resume.  Prediction: Alabama (pick 'em)

Who wins every college basketball game? And which teams could sink your bankroll? Visit SportsLine now to see how to pick every college basketball game, all from the model that simulates every game 10,000 times and has generated over $2,000 in profit the last four-plus years.