Villanova Wildcats vs Kansas Jayhawks Betting Preview

Villanova Wildcats vs Kansas Jayhawks Betting Preview

The stage is set for the final three games of the college basketball season in New Orleans. The Villanova Wildcats and Kansas Jayhawks tip things off at 6:09 p.m. ET on Saturday.

Villanova (30-7) has won nine straight games, including all seven postseason games through the Big East Tournament and the South Region, and the Wildcats have done it their own way. That is a strong defense and playing within themselves offensively.

Like Villanova, Kansas (32-6) is on a nine-game winning streak, including seven in the postseason with a Big 12 Tournament championship and then the Midwest Regional.

The Jayhawks were tested but pulled through with a convincing win over Miami, outscoring the Hurricanes 47-15 in the second half in a 26-point win.

The line opened at Kansas -3.5 with an over/under of 132.5 and has since moved to Kansas -4.5 and 133.5 as of this writing.

Kansas Jayhawks Betting Preview: Standout offense

The Jayhawks have always been a team that likes to get up and down under Bill Self. This year’s team is no different, and the more possessions they get, the more opportunities for their efficient offense.

Kansas scores 78.6 points per game for the 29th best mark in the country. They are 23rd in efficiency, converting at 48% from the field and 36.1% on 3-pointers, the 66th best mark.

Ochai Agbaji has led Kansas for most of the season, but his scoring margin has dropped in the tournament. The welcome resurgence of Arizona State transfer Remy Martin, who is averaging six points above his season mark during the postseason.

Jalen Wilson, Christian Braun, and David McCormack are also scoring in double figures and averaging at least six rebounds per game.

Villanova Wildcats Betting Preview: Defensive battle

Villanova will try to combat that pace by limiting turnovers and securing rebounds. Of course, making shots goes a long way in that, too. The Wildcats hold teams to 28.3 rebounds per game, the 38th best mark in the country.

The Wildcats hang their hats on defense, holding teams to 63.6 points per game which is 36th in the country. Teams are converting 41% from the field against Villanova, the 54th best mark in the country.

Villanova can score it, too. The ‘Cats have the 49th best 3-point shooting team at 36.6% from 3-point range and are the best free-throw shooting team in the country at 82.5%. If it gets late and they’re able to draw fouls, Villanova should be able to put away Kansas.

Losing Justin Moore, the second-leading scorer during the regular and postseason, to an Achilles injury hurts. But Villanova’s system and leaders Collin Gillespie and Jermaine Samuels will try to lead them.

Betting Prediction

Villanova is 20-16-1 against the spread and 17-20 on over/unders this season, which includes a 5-2 mark against the spread in the postseason.

Kansas is 19-18-1 against the spread and 20-18 on over/unders, with a 6-1 postseason record against the spread.

Rebounding will be key in this game, and if Kansas can get live-ball rebounds and push up court, they should be able to win and cover 4.5.

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