The Notre Dame Fighting Irish (13-5, 3-2 ACC) welcome the Louisville Cardinals (13-4, 3-1 ACC) in a matchup that pits outstanding offense against stifling defense. Notre Dame opened as a 3-point favorite, while the Over/Under (O/U) for the game has been set at 139 points. Tip-off is set for 7 p.m. ET on Tuesday, January 16, 2018.
Louisville Cardinals vs. Notre Dame Fighting Irish Free Preview
The last time the Cardinals played, they defeated the Virginia Tech Hokies, 94-86. Deng Adel was the games leading scorer with 27 points on 10-for-15 shooting. Louisville played a perfect game. They had an extraordinary offensive rebounding percentage of 35.5 (above their season average of 32.4) and a turnover percentage of 18.5 (worse than their season average of 14.6). Virginia Tech recorded marks of 30.3 and 21.2, respectively, for those same stats.
The Fighting Irish are hoping for a better outcome after their 69-68 loss to the No. 20 North Carolina Tar Heels in their last outing. Temple Gibbs was the games leading scorer with 19 points on 6-for-20 shooting. North Carolina had a turnover percentage of 9.3 (better than their season average of 15.0). Notre Dame, on the other hand, had an offensive rebounding percentage of 45.5 (above their season average of 29.4).
This matchup pits one of the NCAA’s top offenses against one of its elite defenses as Notre Dame ranks 25th in offensive efficiency and Louisville is 33rd in defensive efficiency.
Of Louisville’s 15 games that accepted bets, eight have finished over the O/U total, while 7 of Notre Dame’s 13 games have finished under the projected point total. Both teams have superb straight up (SU) records (13-4 for Louisville; 13-5 for Notre Dame), but the Cardinals hold a slight edge against the spread (ATS). Louisville is 7-7-1 ATS, while the Fighting Irish are 7-6.
Both teams have had a player trending in the right direction over their last five games. For the Cardinals, it’s been Adel, who has averaged 13.8 points and 5.6 rebounds, while the Fighting Irish have gotten solid contributions from Martinas Geben (10.2 rebounds, 9.6 points and 1.2 blocks).
This is the first time these teams will battle this year, after splitting two games last season. In the most recent matchup, the Cardinals won 71-64. The Cardinals dominated nearly every stat category in the game. They had a phenomenal offensive rebounding percentage of 45.7 and a free throw rate of 0.237. For those same stats, the Fighting Irish were 22.2 and 0.155, respectively.
Louisville Cardinals vs. Notre Dame Fighting Irish Betting Prediction
Predictions: SU Winner – Louisville, ATS Winner – Louisville, O/U – Under
- The Fighting Irish rank 36th in steals allowed per game (5.2) while the Cardinals rank 102nd (6.3).
- On the road, Louisville is 2-3 ATS with 3 overs and 2 unders.
- At home, Notre Dame is 2-3 ATS with 3 overs and 2 unders.
- Louisville ranks ninth in assists allowed per game (9.9) while Notre Dame ranks 131st (13.4).
- The Fighting Irish rank 99th in rebounds per game (37.1) while the Cardinals rank 212th in rebounds allowed per game (37.2).
- Louisville ranks second in blocks per game (7.6) while Notre Dame ranks 79th in blocks allowed per game (3.3).
- Notre Dame is 3-2 ATS with 4 unders and 1 over in their last five games.
- Over their last five games, Louisville is 4-1 ATS with 3 overs and 2 unders.
- The Fighting Irish’s average margin of victory in their last five games has been 6.6, down from 13.5 for the season.
- During their last five games, the Cardinals have scored an average of 74.8 points per game (2.8 below their season average) and allowed an average of 74.0 points per game (6.6 above their season average).