Xavier at Villanova Lines, Free Pick & TV Info

Posted by Kenny Bell on Monday,January 9, 2017 1:27, EDT in

It’s one of the biggest games of the year in the Big East on Tuesday night. Villanova was the No. 1 team in last week’s polls but will fall a bit after suffering its first loss of the season. The Wildcats host No. 16 Xavier, although the Musketeers could go a bit higher in the new polls on Monday. Villanova is a solid home favorite in the college basketball lines.

Xavier at Villanova Lines, Free Pick & TV Info

When: Tuesday, Jan. 10, 7 PM ET
Where: The Pavilion, Villanova
TV: Fox Sports 1
Stream: Fox Sports Go
RadioXavier / Villanova
Opening NCAA Basketball Lines: TBA

Why Bet On Xavier?

The Musketeers (13-2, 3-0 Big East) come off a 97-82 win over St. John’s. Xavier has won 15 straight games at the Cintas Center and 24 of the last 25 at home. The Musketeers’ defensive pressure was too much for the Red Storm at times, forcing 10 turnovers and recording 23 points off of turnovers. Xavier outscored St. John’s 36-13 off the bench. XU is the last remaining unbeaten team in Big East play. Xavier leads the Big East and is No. 18 nationally in rebound margin (+8.1 rpg.).

Xavier’s Edmond Sumner is second on the team in scoring (12th in Big East at 15.6 ppg.) and first in assists (third in conference at 4.9 apg.). Xavier junior Trevon Bluiett, a 2016-17 USA Today preseason Third Team All-American, leads XU in scoring at 17.7 ppg. (seventh in the Big East) and has posted a team-high eight 20-point games this season. Bluiett is 29th on XU’s career scoring list with 1,186 points. Senior RaShid Gaston leads the team and is seventh in the Big East in rebounding at 6.3 rpg.; ranked third in the league in offensive reb. at 2.6 rpg.

Xavier coach Chris Mack announced after Saturday’s victory that he will reinstate senior Myles Davis after a 15-game suspension. Davis’ suspension stems from an August incident in which he allegedly smashed his ex-girlfriend’s phone on the sidewalk and struck and dented the door of her car. Davis originally faced two misdemeanor criminal damaging charges. In November, he pleaded guilty to one reduced charge of disorderly conduct.

Xavier’s second-leading returning scorer, Davis averaged 10.8 points and 4.1 assists last season for a Musketeers team that won 28 games. The 6-foot- 2 combo guard will boost a Xavier offense shooting a modest 34.7 percent from behind the arc and ease some of the pressure on Sumner to be the Musketeers’ primary playmaker.

Villanova leads the series 22-5, although the two teams split the home-and- home series last season.

Why Bet On Villanova?

The Wildcats (15-1) bounced back from a loss to Butler with a 93-81 win over Marquette on Saturday. Three days after shooting a season-worst 37.3 percent from the field in the loss at Butler, Villanova set the tone for the night in the opening five minutes when it made its first six shots from the field. The Cats kept up the pace in the second half, sinking 12 of their first 14 attempts as they added to a margin that reached 30 points.

“I just liked the way we made good decisions,” Villanova coach Jay Wright said. “Everybody shared the ball – 24 assists – and that’s just really how we want to play. That’s how we normally play, but we were just getting a little sloppy and we’ve got to keep that up because people try to take that away from us. We have to be disciplined and still be able to do that.”

Kris Jenkins scored a season-high 23 points, including six of Villanova’s 14 three-point baskets, to lead the Wildcats. Josh Hart added 19 points, Jalen Brunson 16, and Mikal Bridges, who went scoreless against Butler, was a big part of the offense with 15 points. Villanova finished with 24 assists on 32 field goals. Hart had seven and redshirt freshman Donte DiVincenzo distributed a career-high six. In the second half, the Wildcats made 65.4 percent of their shots, and 61 percent from beyond the arc.

Villanova entered Saturday night’s game as the Big East’s top team in 3-point field goal percentage defense (.277). But that figure took a hit against the Golden Eagles as Marquette dropped in 14-of- 31 attempts from beyond the arc (.452). On the season opponents convert .292 of their 3-point attempts against the Wildcats.

Xavier at Villanova Free Pick: Villanova Wildcats

Take Villanova on NCAA Basketball odds.