Xavier vs. Villanova Pick
Will No. 1 Villanova be able to pick up a double-digit win at home when it hosts No. 10 Xavier tonight at 8PM ET?
According to oddsmakers at Bovada.lv, Villanova is favored at home in this game, as the Wildcats are getting odds of -9.5 points against Xavier. The over/under total for the contest is listed at 164 points. Tonight’s game takes place from the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and will air live on FS1.
Villanova moved back to No. 1 this week following a 100-90 win at home over Marquette this past weekend. The Wildcats are now 14-1 on the season, 2-1 in conference play and 10-5 against the spread. Nova has failed to cover in its last two games. The Cats are averaging 88.9 points per game on offense while allowing 69.8 per game on defense. Jalen Brunson is leading Villanova with 19.4 points and 5.2 assists per game while Mikal Bridges is adding 17.8 points and 5.6 rebounds per contest.
Xavier had a long win streak snapped this weekend, as the Musketeers lost at Providence, 81-72. Xavier is 15-2 overall, 3-1 in the Big East and 12-5 against the spread. The Musketeers are just 3-4 ATS in their last seven games. Xavier is putting up 85.6 points per game this season while giving up 72.2 per game on defense. Trevon Bluiett is leading Xavier with 19.4 points and 5.6 rebounds per game while J.P Macura is adding 13.1 points per contest.
Villanova has won eight of its last nine meetings with Xavier and the Wildcats have covered the spread in all of those wins. This is a big spread for a top-10 matchup, but Xavier is coming off a 9-point road loss against Providence. Nova has the better team, it is just a matter of whether or not the Cats hit their shots and stay focused on defense. Nova’s defense is actually slightly worse at home than on the road. The public betting is backing Xavier tonight, but I am going to take my chances on Villanova.
CBB DAILY PREDICTION: VILLANOVA -9.5