Charles Barkley told a national TV audience that Kansas will win the national championship on Monday after the Jayhawks defeated Villanova on Saturday.
Barkley’s comment came a few minutes after the conclusion of the Jayhawks’ 81-65 win over the Wildcats. Kansas will make its first national title game appearance since 2012, which also came in New Orleans and ended with a loss to Kentucky.
Barkley provided a bit of analysis about the game, and then went right to his prediction.
“They’re (Kansas) going to win the national championship on Monday night,” Barkley said. “I’ve seen enough.”
Barkley, who normally works for TNT as part of its ‘Inside the NBA’ coverage, has spent the past three weeks providing analysis for the NCAA Tournament as part of the Turner/CBS coverage, along with Kenny Smith, Clark Kellogg and Ernie Johnson.
Kansas guard Ochai Agbaji, who flirted with the NBA last offseason before returning for his senior year, had 21 points and made six 3-pointers. Forward David McCormack had a season-high 25 points and added nine rebounds in what was his best overall game of the season.
Villanova cut the Kansas lead to six points with about six minutes left, but guard Christian Braun helped the Jayhawks pull away with a pull-up jumper and two 3-pointers in the final five minutes, part of his 10 points, all of which came in the second half. Jayhawks forward Jalen Wilson added 11 points.
Kansas is seeking its sixth national title and its second under head coach Bill Self.
You can find Matthew Postins on Twitter @PostinsPostcard.