Texas Tech (27-9) vs Villanova (33-4)
When: Sunday, March 25th 2018
Where: TD Garden, Boston, MA
Time: 2:20 ET | TV: CBS
Opening Odds: Villanova -6.5/143
Can anyone stop the the hot shooting of the Villanova Wildcats right now? The Texas Tech Red Raiders are sure going to give it their best try as the team’s will battle on Sunday afternoon in Boston for the right to advance to the Final Four in San Antonio next weekend. The Wildcats, who are seeking their second Final Four appearance in two years, drained 13-of-24 from 3-point range in Friday’s 12-point win over defensive-minded West Virginia, improving the team to 47.8% from long range in their three tournament wins. Villanova so far has looked like the best team this March Madness with their victories over Radford, Alabama, and West Virginia, coming by an average of 20.3 points. While the Wildcats have made 44 3-pointers through three tournament games, the Red Raiders only have made 15 and are shooting just 31.3% from that distance over that span. Texas Tech has used their terrific defense to hold all three opponents to 66 or less points including a 78-65 win over No. 2 seed Purdue in Friday night’s Sweet 16 contest. Jarrett Culver leads Texas Tech with 54 made 3s, while Phil Booth has 52 for Villanova and he is fifth on the Wildcats in that category. Villanova needs 10 3-pointers to tie the all-time Division I record for 3-pointers in a season. (VMI had 442 in 2006-07.) The winner of this game will face either No. 1 seed Kansas or No. 2 seed Duke in next week’s Final Four.
The Red Raiders received a combined 45 points from guard Keenan Evans over the first two rounds, but the senior guard was limited to three field goals against Purdue, although he still led the squad with 16 points. Zach Smith added 14 points off the bench and has nailed 15-of-19 shots from the field over the last four games. Freshman Zhaire Smith has shined as well, recording double-digit points in all three tournament games. Texas Tech, which has already advanced further than they ever have, needs everyone to step up against Villanova, including Justin Gray, who contributed 12 points against Purdue, matching his second-highest total of the season.
Star guard Jalen Brunson led the Wildcats with 27 points in the win over the Mountaineers, while freshman Omari Spellman chipped-in 18 points, eight rebounds, three assists, three blocks, and two steals. Brunson has made at least 50% of his shot attempts in six of the last seven games, while Mikal Bridges has done so in 11 of his last 12. Bridges also carries a seven-game streak of making at least 50 percent of his 3-pointers. Booth, who helped carry Villanova to the national title two years ago, is just 2-of-11 from the field over the last two games and 5-of-20 over the last four.
I actually had Texas Tech winning the whole tournament in my bracket, but after watching how this Villanova team has played, I don’t see that happening. The Wildcats have it all going right now and the Red Raiders just don’t have enough offense to keep up if they get down by a big margin.
Pick: Villanova -6.5
- Red Raiders are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games following a ATS win.
- Red Raiders are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 non-conference games.
- Red Raiders are 17-35-1 ATS in their last 53 neutral site games.
- Red Raiders are 2-5-1 ATS in their last 8 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600.
- Red Raiders are 2-7-1 ATS in their last 10 games vs. a team with a winning straight up record.
- Red Raiders are 2-7-1 ATS in their last 10 games overall.
- Red Raiders are 0-4 ATS in their last 4 vs. Big East.
- Wildcats are 6-1 ATS in their last 7 games overall.
- Wildcats are 9-2 ATS in their last 11 NCAA Tournament games.
- Wildcats are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600.
- Wildcats are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games following a ATS win.
- Wildcats are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 vs. Big 12.
- Wildcats are 22-8 ATS in their last 30 games vs. a team with a winning straight up record.
- Wildcats are 21-8 ATS in their last 29 games following a straight up win.
- Wildcats are 20-8 ATS in their last 28 neutral site games.
- Wildcats are 51-21-1 ATS in their last 73 non-conference games.
- Wildcats are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 Sunday games.
- Under is 5-1 in Red Raiders last 6 vs. Big East.
- Over is 7-2 in Red Raiders last 9 overall.
- Over is 5-2 in Red Raiders last 7 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600.
- Under is 12-5 in Red Raiders last 17 neutral site games.
- Over is 12-3 in Wildcats last 15 games following a straight up win.
- Over is 6-2 in Wildcats last 8 non-conference games.
- Over is 9-3 in Wildcats last 12 games following a ATS win.
- Over is 6-2 in Wildcats last 8 neutral site games.
- Over is 19-7 in Wildcats last 26 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600.
- Under is 8-3 in Wildcats last 11 vs. Big 12.
- Over is 21-8 in Wildcats last 29 overall.
- Over is 5-2 in Wildcats last 7 NCAA Tournament games.