The No. 1 Virginia Cavaliers (27-2, 16-1 ACC) and Notre Dame Fighting Irish (18-12, 8-9 ACC) will go head-to-head at John Paul Jones Arena to wrap up the regular season. Tip-off is scheduled for 4 p.m. ET on Saturday, March 3, 2018.
Notre Dame Fighting Irish at Virginia Cavaliers Odds Preview
In the Fighting Irish’s last game, they were victorious over the Pittsburgh Panthers, 73-56. With 12 points and nine rebounds, Bonzie Colson had a solid outing for Notre Dame. Notre Dame played a nearly flawless game. They had a free throw rate of 0.149 (matching their season average) and an offensive rebounding percentage of 44.2 (above their season average of 30.3). For those same stats, Pittsburgh was 0.076 and 25.6, respectively.
The Cavaliers will look to keep it rolling after edging the Louisville Cardinals in their last contest, 67-66. With 21 points on 6-for-11 shooting, Ty Jerome was the top scorer from either team. The Cavaliers, who came into the game averaging an offensive rebounding percentage of 27.5, had a phenomenal mark of 33.3 and had a better effective field goal percentage (0.482 vs. 0.478).
Half-court execution will be critical when two of the nations slowest-paced teams square off. Virginia currently ranks 346th in possessions per game (60.4) and Notre Dame is 300th (66.7). Moreover, the 30th-ranked offense of the Fighting Irish (offensive efficiency of 114.3) will clash against the second-ranked defense of the Cavaliers (defensive efficiency of 87.1).
Matt Farrell has been playing at a high level recently for Notre Dame, averaging 22.2 points and 6.6 assists over the last five games.
This is the first time these teams will go head-to-head this year, after splitting two games last season. The Fighting Irish won the last game 71-58. The Fighting Irish dominated nearly every facet of the game. They had an absurd free throw rate of 0.391 and a solid effective field goal percentage of 0.576. For those same stats, the Cavaliers recorded marks of 0.123 and 0.447, respectively.
Notre Dame Fighting Irish at Virginia Cavaliers Prediction
Free Basketball Pick: SU Winner – Virginia, ATS Winner – Virginia, O/U – Over
- The Cavaliers rank 49th in blocks allowed per game (2.8) while the Fighting Irish rank 160th (3.9).
- Virginia ranks second in steals allowed per game (3.9) while Notre Dame ranks 27th (5.1).
- Virginia ranks first in assists allowed per game (8.6) while Notre Dame ranks 176th (14.0).
- The Fighting Irish rank 117th in rebounds per game (36.1) while the Cavaliers rank 257th (32.7).
- Notre Dame ranks 111th in three pointers attempted per game (23.1) while Virginia ranks 243rd (19.3).
- The Cavaliers average margin of victory in their last five games has been 9.8, down from 14.9 for the season.
- During their last five games, the Fighting Irish have scored an average of 74.6 points per game (1.6 below their season average) and allowed an average of 70.8 points per game (2.3 above their season average).