The No. 8 Providence Friars (24-3, 14-2 Big East) visit the Pavilion Tuesday to take on the No. 11 Villanova Wildcats (21-7, 14-4). Tip is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. ET (FS1). Below, we look at the Providence vs. Villanova odds and lines, and make our expert college basketball picks, predictions and bets.
Providence is coming off a huge 21-point win (72-51) over Creighton Saturday. The Friars have won 3 straight games since losing at home to Villanova 89-84 Feb. 15. They’ve only lost to Virginia, ‘Nova and Marquette.
Providence is 16-11 against the spread (ATS), 3-2 ATS against ranked opponents and is a conference-best 6-2 ATS on the road.
Villanova is 7-5 ATS at home, only behind DePaul (12-5) in the Big East. The Wildcats are 14-13-1 ATS overall and 6-4-1 ATS against ranked opponents.
They are led by fifth-year senior G Collin Gillespie’s 16.6 points per game this season.
Rankings courtesy of the Ferris Mowers Coaches Poll powered by USA TODAY Sports.
Providence at Villanova odds, spread and lines
Odds provided by Tipico Sportsbook; access USA TODAY Sports Scores and Sports Betting Odds hub for a full list. Lines last updated at 2:36 a.m. ET.
Money line: Providence +380 (bet $100 to win $380) | Villanova -540 (bet $100 to win $540)
Against the spread: Providence +9.5 (-105) | Villanova -9.5 (-120)
Over/Under (O/U): 134.5 (O: -115 | U: -107)
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Providence at Villanova odds, lines, picks and predictions
Villanova 68, Providence 64
At +380, Providence has good value. The Friars are 7-1 straight up on the road, but having been inconsistent offensively at times this season, I can’t fully get behind them.
Taking the points below has value though.
Against the spread
BET PROVIDENCE +9.5 (-105).
The Friars have gotten quite a bit of flak this season for winning close games and not putting it on weaker opponents, but they have a mere three losses. As mentioned, one of the losses was to the Wildcats by just 5 points.
The three times the Friars were underdogs by 5 or more points this season, they not only covered, but they went 3-0 straight up (SU). Those 3 times were at UConn, at Xavier and at Wisconsin. Providence is 5-0 SU/ATS as a road underdog.
In the season’s first meeting between these rivals, ‘Nova shot 50.9% from the field and 47.8% from deep (11-for-23), while Providence shot 48.4% and 21.7% from deep (5-for-23). If those averages return to normal, Providence wins the game.
The Friars have shown few weaknesses and have been able to hang with close teams. I’d take them to cover in this position.
LEAN to the UNDER 134.5 (-107).
Villanova made it rain the first time these teams met. Assuming that doesn’t happen again, there should be fewer points as both teams rank outside the top 200 in possessions per game.
Villanova sits 334th out of 358 programs in possessions per game. Basically, the Wildcats play an ultra-slow pace. The Friars don’t pick up the pace much either, ranking just 224th.
Villanova averages 66.4 possessions per game, while Providence averages 69.4. The Wildcats defense ranks 61st in opponents’ field-goal percentage, while the Friars rank 49th.
The ‘Cats are 14-14 O/U this season; the Friars are 14-13 O/U.
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