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Press Virginia Looking To Trip Up Dominant Villanova Team

Jevon Carter of the West Virginia Mountaineers defends the basket during the 2018 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament

West Virginia brought its patented Press Virginia defense to the NCAA Tournament and it has clearly overwhelmed unprepared opponents. WVU forced Murray State and Marshall into a combined 34 turnovers with the Mountaineers scoring 45 points off those. However, will West Virginia’s defense be as potent against a more experienced Villanova Wildcats squad in the Sweet 16?

SHARK BITES
  • The total has gone OVER in 7 of West Virginia’s last 8 games with an average combined score of 152.5 ppg.
  • Villanova is 5-1 ATS in its last 6 games.
  • Mikal Bridges is averaging 20.8 points with a 55.6 3PT% in Villanova’s last 5 games.

West Virginia’s leader on both offense and defense is Jevon Carter. The senior is the perfect defender for Bob Huggins’ team, as he is a pestering force on the ball and offers tremendous perimeter defense. Carter is also the focal point on offense, as he has scored nearly a third of the team’s points during the tourney. As long as the offense can continue to put up 80-plus points, then WVU is in a good position to continue its march to a national title.

While most of the attention has been paid to the struggles of other No. 1 seeds, Villanova has quietly been doing what it has done all season – dominate the opposition. The Wildcats have won their first two tournament games by 26 and 23 points respectively. There have been no holes to be seen during the tournament with the team excelling on both ends of the court. The only way to seemingly beat Villanova right now is for the Wildcats to have a bad shooting night, which has been the primary reason for their losses this season.  

West Virginia Mountaineers vs Villanova Wildcats Matchup

Team Betting Records & Power Rankings

The Villanova Wildcats battle the West Virginia Mountaineers, currently sitting with a 26-10 mark (17-16 ATS). The OVER/UNDER records, always important for totals betting, are 24-12 for the Wildcats and 18-16 for the Mountaineers.

The Wildcats sit at No. 3 in the current college hoops power poll here at OddsShark, while the Mountaineers sit at No. 32 on the same chart.

Statistical Matchup

The game also pits Villanova's No. 1-ranked offense, averaging 86.89 PPG, against a Mountaineers defense that ranks No. 74 at 69.03 PPG. The Wildcats' field-goal percentage has averaged 50.34% so far, more than the Mountaineers marksmen have achieved on the year, 43.79% per game.

Recent Outings Betting Recap

The battle between the Mountaineers and Thundering Herd didn't turn out to be much of a battle at all as Marshall was handed a 94-71 defeat on Sunday at Viejas Arena.

Villanova cruised to victory on Saturday, running Alabama out of the gym and running up an 81-58 score at PPG Paints Arena.

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