The No. 9 Alabama Crimson Tide (20-15) clash with the No. 1 Villanova Wildcats (31-4) in the Second Round of the NCAA Tournament at PPG Paints Arena. The game gets underway at 12:10 p.m. ET on Saturday, March 17, 2018.
Alabama Crimson Tide vs. Villanova Wildcats Betting Odds
Both teams were victorious in their last game. The Wildcats had no trouble getting past the No. 16 Radford Highlanders 87-61, while the Crimson Tide won a close one over the No. 8 Virginia Tech Hokies 86-83.
Alabama played a nearly flawless game. They had a phenomenal free throw rate of 0.360 (above their season average of 0.279) and an offensive rebounding percentage of 45.5 (above their season average of 29.1). Virginia Tech put up marks of 0.259 and 38.5, respectively, for those same stats. Villanova, on the other hand, couldn’t miss, shooting 59.6 percent from the field. They also held Radford to a field goal percentage of just 33.9. Villanova was led by Mikal Bridges, who recorded 13 points and six rebounds. Meanwhile, Collin Sexton played a pivotal role for Alabama with 25 points and six assists.
This matchup pits one of the NCAA’s top offenses against one of its elite defenses. Villanova ranks second in effective field goal percentage (0.600) and Alabama is 45th in effective field goal percentage allowed (0.476). Also, the Crimson Tide are among the nations elite at getting to the line, ranking 44th in free throw attempt (FTA) rate (0.281). The Wildcats, meanwhile, rank 41st in opponents FTA rate (0.193).
The Crimson Tide’s Collin Sexton has been playing at a high level over his last five games, averaging 23.2 points and 3.8 assists per game. Meanwhile, Eric Paschall has averaged 10.0 points and 8.2 rebounds during that same time frame for the Wildcats.
Alabama Crimson Tide vs. Villanova Wildcats Odds Pick
Free Pick: SU Winner – Alabama, ATS Winner – Alabama, O/U – Under
- Villanova ranks 10th in three pointers attempted per game (28.6) while Alabama ranks 237th (19.6).
- The Wildcats rank 47th in blocks allowed per game (2.7) while the Crimson Tide rank 170th (3.7).
- Villanova ranks 150th in rebounds per game (35.5) while Alabama ranks 192nd in rebounds allowed per game (35.7).
- The Wildcats rank 14th in assists per game (16.8) while the Crimson Tide rank 206th (12.7).
- Villanova ranks ninth in steals allowed per game (4.6) while Alabama ranks 167th (6.6).
- During their last five games, the Crimson Tide have scored an average of 73.4 points per game (0.7 above their season average) and allowed an average of 74.0 points per game (3.7 above their season average).
- The Wildcats average margin of victory in their last five games has been 20.6, up from 16.5 for the season.