Gtown Nova 3 3

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Georgetown

vs.

Villanova

College Basketball

Pick

3/3/18

Winning the Conference title may be out of reach for Villanova, but this team has its eyes on bigger prizes. That starts with the Big East Tournament and then of course the NCAA Tournament. It may be the final home Game of the season for Villanova, but it also doesn’t have any relevant seniors. Guys like Jalen Brunson and Mikal Bridges could go early to the NBA, but both are still only juniors.

There’s no reason to worry for the Wildcats after winning the first meeting between these teams at Georgetown in dominant fashion 88-56. Nothing went right for the Hoyas turning the ball over 17 times and making just 22-of-56 shots. since that Game in mid-January, they’ve at least been more competitive. They went toe-to-toe with teams like Providence and Marquette and even beat Seton Hall and then on the road at Butler. In fact, they have more Big East wins on the road than at home, which is an interesting stat in itself. All signs point to another blowout, but GTown has actually stayed close in most Conference Games this season and even took Xavier to overtime.

That said, there aren’t many paths for Georgetown to win, coming in with less than average statistical rankings on both ends of the cOurt. The best thing going for them is rebounding and that can only get you so far if you’re allowing more than 38 percent from three-point range. Villanova hasn’t been unstoppable this season having lost three of its last seven Games, which rarely gets said about this team. It has been in some close Games and even lost at home to St. John’s, but again, it’s hard to see that happening here.

The Wildcats should get a ton of easy looks just like that first Game when they shot 17-of-33 from deep and six different guys reached double digits. Of course, that was the extreme for Villanova, playing as well as possible scoring 1.31 points per possession. Reaching that exact level will be close to impossible, although the Hoyas allow nearly 90 points against any decent offense they face. Brunson and Bridges should have their way, but it’s the other guys that make Villanova so lethal. Phil Booth, Omari Spellman and Donte DiVincenzo can be called upon at any point depending on the matchup. Eric Paschall quietly scores 10 points per Game and he’s probably Nova’s sixth-best offensive player. against a bad defense, there shouldn’t be many problems.

To at least compete, the Hoyas will have to Scoreand that’s how they’ve stayed tight with Xavier and Marquette in recent Games. If they don’t make shots and turn the ball over a ton like in that first Game, it could get ugly. Marcus Derrickson is the only regular shooter that connects on more than 37 percent of his threes for the Hoyas. Otherwise, the guys that take the most shots from deep on the team, Jahvon Blair and Jamorko Pickett, are at just 33.6% and 36.9%, respectively. If the shots aren’t falling, Georgetown has close to no chance. Even if they are, there will still be more needed from Jessie Govan down low. He had 12 points in the first meeting as he attacked Spellman, but that’s still not enough to stay close with Nova.

Villanova ended the previous two seasons with wins against Georgetown, winning 84-71 at home in 2016 and then 81-55 on the road in 2017. The Hoyas should compete more than the previous meeting this season, but that still doesn’t mean Villanova won’t win by more than 20 points.

Our Pick – Georgetown +18.5