Even a long break from basketball did not stop the No. 3 Villanova Wildcats from extending their undefeated streak to seven games. Still unbeaten in conference play, the Wildcats will take on the streaking Providence Friars this Saturday at home. Will the Friars hand Villanova its first loss in Big East play? Or will the Wildcats keep going? Check out our preview of this game below.
Betting Preview for the Providence Friars vs Villanova Wildcats NCAA College Basketball Game on January 23 2021
Where: Finneran Pavilion, Villanova, PA
When: Saturday, January 23, 2021, 8:00 PM ET
TV Broadcast: TBA
Betting on the Providence Friars (odds)
Record: 8-6 Overall / 4-4 Conference
Providence ended its three-game losing skid in style, as the Friars took down No. 11 Creighton Bluejays in Omaha on Jan. 20 to the tune of a 74-70 score. It was the Nate Watson show for the Friars in that game, as the center pumped in 29 points to go with 6 rebounds in 34 minutes. Watson and David Duke will be the 1-2 punch of the Friars against Villanova, and the Friars hope that the two will click this coming Saturday. Duke is Providence’s best player. He is averaging 19.9 points per game and shooting 46.9 percent from deep, while Watson is putting up 18.3 points per game on 62.9 percent shooting from the field. Providence is too top-heavy with just Watson and Duke averaging in double figures this season, though Alyn Breed and Jimmy Nichols had 15 and 10 points against Creighton, respectively. The Friars are 98th in the nation with 74.2 points per game but 35th in adjusted offensive efficiency with 111.5 points per 100 possessions.
Providence is 4-1 against the spread in its last five games.
Betting on the Villanova Wildcats (odds)
Record: 9-1 Overall / 4-0 Conference
Speaking of efficiency, there aren’t a lot of teams in Division I basketball this season with a more efficient offense than Villanova. The Wildcats, who are averaging 79.7 points per game, are second in the nation with an assists/ turnover ratio of 1.887. The Wildcats rarely turn the ball over, relatively speaking. In fact, they average the fewest turnovers per game with just 8.0 per contest. Villanova’s 3-point shooting is a big reason why the team has been an offensive juggernaut. In their last game, the Wildcats drained 9 threes on 22 attempts (40.9%) and shot 47.3 percent from the field on their way to a 76-74 home win over the Seton Hall Pirates on Jan. 19. That’s the first time Villanova saw action in 27 days, so they likely could have done a lot better if not for the rust accumulated from that long layoff. Collin Gillespie led the Wildcats with 22 points, while Jermaine Samuels came off the bench and fired 20 points while hitting all three 3-point attempts.
Villanova, which is nailing 10.2 threes per game, is 6-4 against the spread in its last 10 contests.
Villanova wins, 74-66.
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