East Region Prediction

NCAA Tournament Predictions: Will Villanova still win the East Region?

Is there anyone that can keep Villanova from reaching the Final Four out of the East Region? Here’s our NCAA Tournament predictions for this foursome.

According to oddsmakers at YouWager, Villanova is the clear favorite in the region, as the Wildcats have +100 odds. Other odds are West Virginia (+375), Purdue (+400) and Texas Tech (+450). The East Region semifinals and final will take place from TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts.

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THE FAVORITE

Villanova has looked good in its first two games of the tournament. The Wildcats beat No. 16 Radford and No. 9 Alabama by more than 20 points. Nova will now face No. 5 West Virginia in the Sweet 16 as they seek to make their sixth Final Four appearance. Nova has won its last seven while going 5-1 ATS in its last six. On a neutral floor, Villanova is averaging 84.3 points per game on a neutral floor while holding opponents to 64.3 per game. The Wildcats look like the team to beat in the region and have been one of the top teams in the nation all season.

DARK HORSE

Texas Tech at +450 is an interesting bet. The Red Raiders defeated Stephen F. Austin and Florida over the first weekend and they have won four of their last five games. Their defense has been locked in lately, allowing just 67.2 per game over their last five. This week they face a Purdue team that is without a key player. That’s a game the Red Raiders can win and then it’s a head’s up battle with WVU or Nova, where anything can happen.

STAY AWAY

Purdue at +400 is the bet I definitely don’t like. While the Boilermakers were able to top Butler in the second round without Isaac Haas, it is hard to image Purdue winning two games this weekend without him. Haas is averaging 14.7 points and 5.7 rebounds per game and a broken elbow will keep him off the floor. A loss like that will be hard to overcome against the teams remaining in this region.

PREDICTION

I said going into the tournament that I liked Villanova to win the whole thing and the East Region, so I am sticking with that pick. The Wildcats have played the best the most consistently this season. While West Virginia poses a tough challenge, I think the Cats have the athletes to handle that press and also the defense to hold any of these teams in check.

EAST REGION PREDICTION: VILLANOVA +100

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