Villanova vs Baylor Prediction
Who: #5 seed Villanova Wildcats (18-6) vs #1 seed Baylor (24-2)
Where: Hinkle Fieldhouse in Indianapolis.
When: Saturday, March 27th, 2021, at 5:15 PM EST
Villanova vs Baylor Odds
Spread: Baylor -6.5 (-110) | Villanova +6.5 (-110)
Money line: Baylor -300 | Villanova +240
Over/Under: 139 (O: -110) | (U: -110)
Villanova vs Baylor Prediction: It’s time for the Elite Eight round of the NCAA March Madness tournament. In a South Region semifinal, the 5th seed Villanova Wildcats will look to take down the 1st seed Baylor Bears on Saturday night.
There have been plenty of upsets this tournament, but both these teams have handled business as usual. For either team, this game will be the biggest challenger of the 2021 tournament thus far.
Villanova Team Breakdown
Villanova came into the tournament hobbling, having lost three of their final four games of the regular season and the Big East tournament. The Wildcats advance to the Elite Eight with two easy wins: A first-round 73-63 win over Winthrop and an 84-61 victory over North Texas.
Senior guard Collin Gillespie was averaging 14 points, 4.6 assists, and shooting 37.6% from the three-point line prior to suffering a season-ending knee injury in the second to last game of the regular season. Sophomore Justin Moore has been Gillespie’s primary replacement. Moore has averaged 35.5 minutes in the two NCAA Tournament games resulting in 15 points and 3.5 assists.
Forward Jeremiah Robinson-Earl has also stepped up for the team, with an average of 16 points and 8.3 rebounds this season. He excels at moving off-ball and playing in the post.
‘Nova is solid on both sides of the court. On offense, the Wildcats have reliable deep shooters. In their Sunday win over UNT, the team went 15-30 from three, tying a season-high record. Defensively, Villanova boasts one of the top units in the country. Over their last eight games, the Wildcats have held opponents to a 39.6% mark from the floor and 29.9% from three.
Baylor Team Breakdown
Baylor has fought their way to the top seed this season. The high-scoring Bears have the 4th ranked offense in the nation, averaging 83.8 points per game. The offensive dominance led Baylor to 18 wins to begin the season. A COVID outbreak forced the team off the court leading to their two losses.
The Bears led the nation in three-point accuracy, hitting at a crazy 41.5%. Baylor will need the defense to step up against ‘Nova; we’ve seen what a good three-point shooting team can do to them when they lost to Oklahoma State in the Big IX title game.
Like Villanova, Baylor has coasted through their first two games. A dominating 79-55 victory over Hartford followed by a 76-63 over Wisconsin. Baylor guard Jared Butler is the quietest of this season’s five first-team All-Americans. Butler averages only 16.9 points, not extraordinary for a player so honored, but he produces his biggest numbers at the biggest moments. Davion Mitchell has transformed from a defensive star to a shooter, hitting 46.1 percent of his threes.
Betting Trends For Villanova vs Baylor
- Baylor is 3-6 ATS in their last nine games. In the NCAA tournament, they are even at 1-1 but covered in their last game against Wisconsin
- The OVER is 8-2 in Baylor’s last ten games
- Villanova has covered in both of their tournament games, but on the season, they have been unreliable, coming in with a 50% rate
- This is the first game all season in which Villanova enters as an underdog
Prediction for Villanova vs Baylor
Despite plenty of upsets this tournament, there won’t be one in this game. Villanova has been playing solid defense but has yet to face an offense as high potent as Baylor’s. Baylor’s defense won’t keep Villanova out of reach, though. I expect Baylor to come out on top in a close and high-scoring match.
- Villanova covers +6.5 spread (-110)
- Baylor wins straight up (-300)
- Over 139 hits (-110)
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