Villanova Wildcats vs. Connecticut Huskies - 3/22/14 East Region
Connecticut Huskies (27-8) at Villanova Wildcats (29-4)
College Basketball: Saturday, March 22, 2014 at 9:40 pm (First Niagara Center)
The Line: Villanova Wildcats -3.5 -- Over/Under: 132.5 See the Latest Odds
The Connecticut Huskies and Villanova Wildcats will play in the third round of the NCAA tournament on Saturday night.
Connecticut came back to beat the Saint Joseph’s Haws in the second round with an 89-81 victory. The Huskies made 11 threes and forced 14 turnovers in the win. On the season, Connecticut averages 72.3 points on 44.9 percent shooting and allows 63.6 points on 39 percent shooting. The Huskies have held eight of their last 11 opponents to 68 or fewer points. The Huskies also shoot 76.4 percent from the free throw line and 39 percent from downtown. The Connecticut Huskies are 18-15 ATS overall this season.
Villanova cruised to a 73-53 victory over the Milwaukee Panthers in the second round. In the victory, the Wildcats held the Panthers to just 28.6 percent shooting and snagged 46 rebounds. On the season, Villanova averages 78.4 points on 45.9 percent shooting and allows 66.2 points on 40.3 percent shooting. The Wildcats have scored at least 73 points in four of their last five games and have held teams under 40 percent shooting during that stretch. The Wildcats also shoot 71.5 percent from the free throw line and 35.6 percent from downtown on the season. The Villanova Wildcats are 22-9 ATS overall this season.
The Huskies are 10-3 ATS in their last 13 NCAA Tournament games and 5-1 ATS in their last 6 vs. Big East. The Wildcats are 13-3 ATS in their last 16 non-conference games and 38-17 ATS in their last 55 games overall. The Huskies are 1-5-1 ATS in the last 7 meetings between these two teams, while the underdog is 4-0-1 ATS in the last 5 meetings.
I like Connecticut in this game to not only cover, but to win the game SU. The Huskies have a player in Shabazz Napier who can take over a game, and they’re a team that makes their free throws down the stretch. I’ve been chanting all season that Villanova is overrated, as it’s a team that’s been living off of a Kansas victory that took place in November.
UConn is a team that always is a tough out in the tournament, and it will get the job done once again.