On Saturday afternoon, the Villanova Wildcats will face the Kansas Jayhawks at Allen Fieldhouse in a matchup between two ranked teams. Villanova comes in at 8-3 and are ranked number 17 in the country. Kansas comes in at 8-0 and are the new number one team in the country after Gonzaga lost this past weekend.
Villanova Trying to Get Back on Track
Villanova started off the season rough but rebounded nicely until they lost to Penn 78-75 on Tuesday night. Villanova trailed almost the entire game and could never get things going completely. Collin Gillespie led the way in scoring with 21 points. Phil Booth added 18 points and played 37 minutes in the game. The Wildcats got good contribution from Saddiq Bey and Eric Paschall who scored 13 and 10 points, respectively.
The Kansas Jayhawks have been solid all season long and finally got the number one spot that they have deserved for so long. In their last game, Kansas narrowly escaped New Mexico St in a 63-60 victory. Dedric Lawson led the way for the Jayhawks in this one, scoring 20 points to go along with 10 rebounds. Kansas only had one other player in double figures: Marcus Garrett with 10 points. They still got balanced scoring from the rest of the team and were able to pull out the win.
Booth, Paschall Bring Experience
Villanova lost a lot of pieces from last years team, but returned Phil Booth and Eric Paschall, who both figure to be an integral part of this Wildcat team. Phil Booth is the leading scorer on Villanova with 15.8 points per game on a team that is averaging exactly 75 PPG. The defense has been solid for the Wildcats as they are allowing just 66 points a game. They will have to play a lot better than they have in their losses against Penn, Michigan, and a surprising Furman team if they want to have a chance against the Jayhawks.
Dedric Lawson is the do-it-all man for Kansas, as he is the leading scorer, rebounder, and assister with 19.1 points per game, 10.6 rebounds per game, and 2.9 assists per game. They will need help from the supporting cast if they want to beat another solid team like they have been doing all season long. Kansas has notched solid wins against Michigan St, Marquette, and Tennessee and look to add Villanova to that list. The Jayhawks are averaging 81.8 points a game on offense and are allowing 71.4 points per game on defense.
Jayhawks vs. Wildcats Prediction
Kansas comes in at -7.5. The Jayhawks have been incredible all season long and I don’t see that stopping any time soon. Villanova has been an inconsistent team and has struggled against teams that are not as good as the Jayhawks. Allen Fieldhouse will be rocking for this one and Kansas should be able to get a comfortable victory against a loud home crowd. Take the Jayhawks -7.5.
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