One Parlay Opportunity for Saturday
One of the biggest matchups on Saturday's college basketball slate is the one between No. 3 Villanova and No. 4 Xavier at 4:30 p.m. ET on FOX. Here's why this matchup presents an interesting parlay opportunity for bettors.
According to oddsmakers from online sports book YouWager, the Wildcats are now 1.5-point road favorites to beat the Musketeers, who opened as 2-point home underdogs. As for the total, the number hit the board at 165.5 but was bet down a full point to 164.5.
Public bettors are siding with the home underdog in this matchup, as 58% of the betting tickets wagered at online sportsbooks are on the Musketeers. Public bettors are also playing the under as of this writing, with 65% of the betting tickets online listed with the u164.5.
Here's why fading the public when it comes to both the side and the total could be profitable. Despite winning nine straight, Xavier has struggled against Villanova in recent years. The Wildcats dominated the Musketeers 89-65 earlier this year in Philly and they also lead the all-time series 25-5. Xavier head coach Chris Mack has beaten Jay Wright just once in the previous 10 meetings between these two teams. If you've watched the previous games in this series, Xavier simply doesn't match up well with Nova, which is desperate having dropped back-to-back games against St. John's and Providence entering play on Saturday.
Here's why the over also makes sense: In two of their three games played in the month of February, the Musketeers have scored at least 96 points. This is the best offensive team that Mack has had at Xavier, while, conversely, this is one of the worst defensive teams that Wright has displayed at Villanova.
The Wildcats are 9-1 against the spread in their last 10 games against the Musketeers, while the over is 6-1 in their last seven games overall. I stay away from parlays as much as possible because they can be fool's gold, but this is a good opportunity.
Saturday College Basketball Prediction: Villanova -1.5 & the over 164.5