Wright's squad remains unblemished
Reigning national champion Villanova has basically steamrolled every nonconference foe thrown its way. Now, the rest of the Big East will incur the Wildcats’ wrath.
Jay Wright’s team begins league action by hosting DePaul, with a 6:30 p.m. ET tip tomorrow night at the Pavilion. Online sports book Bovada.lv gives ‘Nova odds of -3300 to emerge victorious. The Blue Demons, on the other hand, represent +2200 underdogs.
Winners of 18 straight contests dating back to last season’s Big Dance, the Wildcats (12-0) have been idle since a 90-48 rout of American on Dec. 21. Senior Josh Hart led the way with 20 points in that affair, while Eric Paschall and Mikal Bridges added 15 apiece. In total, four of Wright’s players average in double figures in scoring.
DePaul (7-6) displayed similar balance in the consolation game of the recent Continental Tire Las Vegas Classic. Despite dropping a 69-58 decision to surging Missouri State, coach Dave Leitao took a lot of positives out of the Sin City experience. Specifically, Billy Garrett Jr. posted 16 points against the Bears. Tre’Darius McCallum also recorded 11, with Brandon Cyrus chipping in 10.
Still, the Blue Demons clearly aren’t ready for this kind of adversary. Villanova may even see guard Phil Booth (knee tendinitis) rejoin the starting lineup. In any event, bank on a blowout in the City of Brotherly Love.
WEDNESDAY NCAA PICK: VILLANOVA -26.5