College Basketball Odds, Picks & Predictions for Notre Dame vs. Louisville (Saturday, Jan. 22)

College Basketball Odds, Picks & Predictions for Notre Dame vs. Louisville (Saturday, Jan. 22) article feature image

Andy Lyons/Getty Images. Pictured: Malik Williams.

  • Notre Dame takes on Louisville in some afternoon college hoops action in the ACC.
  • The Cardinals enter as short favorites, but do they hold value at home?
  • Keg thinks so, and he explains why with a full betting breakdown below.

Notre Dame vs. Louisville Odds

Saturday, Jan. 22
4 p.m. ET
Notre Dame Odds
-110o / -110u
Louisville Odds
-110o / -110u
Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute college basketball odds here.

Notre Dame continues its three-game road swing at Louisville on ESPN Saturday afternoon. So far, the Irish have split two games on their road trip and will look to earn their first win in Louisville since 2015.

Louisville, meanwhile, is looking to get a win streak going after taking down Boston College 67-54. Prior to the win over the Eagles, Louisville lost three conference games in a row. That isn't the only streak the Cardinals have on their mind, however,  as Louisville is seeking its seventh consecutive win over the Irish.

The Cardinals will also be retiring Russ Smith's number during the game, so I fully expect it to be a tough environment for the Irish.

Notre Dame Fighting Irish

The  Irish have won seven of their last eight games, the most impressive being wins over North Carolina and Clemson.

Those wins have been a product of the Notre Dame offense which is currently the fifth-best in the ACC, ranked 41st in Division I . The Irish are averaging 69.8 points per game and connect on 44.4% of shots overall. Both stats are outside the top 100 in college basketball.

However, the Irish have been impressive from deep, hitting threes at a rate of 35.4%. This is incredibly important for a team that depends on 37.6% of its total points to come from outside the arc. If Louisville can limit Notre Dame's three-point attempts, it would become a deciding factor.

Dane Goodwin has established himself as one of the most efficient and skilled scorers in the country. He is the only major conference player, and one of just two players in the country, to average at least  15 points per game and record .500 FG%, .400 3FG%, and .900 FT%.

Blake Wesley set a program record in the Irish's last game, posting his 14th straight game with a double-figure scoring effort. Against Louisville, Trey Wertz will be looking to mark his name in the history books as well, sitting just seven points away from the 1,00o-point milestone.

And while the Irish rank 32nd per Kenpom in height, they have surprisingly struggled around the basket. The Irish average just 32.9  rebounds per game, a mark that puts them 273rd in Division I and 12th in the ACC.

On the defensive end Notre Dame ranks just inside the top 100 at 94th in scoring defense, allowing opposing teams to score 66.6 points per game on average. And while Louisville hasn't been a force on offense by any means, Notre Dame is allowing teams to post a better shooting percentage from the floor than Louisville has averaged this season.

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Louisville Cardinals

The Cardinals come into this game with a record of 11-7, a somewhat disappointing mark when you consider the Cardinals' potential.

Noah Locke is the only Louisville player averaging double-figure scoring, currently posting 10.8 points per game. And while six other players for the Cardinals are averaging six points per contest, Malik Williams has been the driving force for the team.

Williams  averages 9.9 points per game and leads the team in rebounds, with 8.8 per contest, and blocks at 0.7 per game. But his biggest strength has been on defense. Per Evan Miya, Malik Williams is more important to his team's defensive effort than anyone else in the ACC, ranking first in Defensive Bayesian Performance Rating, which reflects the defensive value a player brings to his team when he is on the court.

Another key piece will return for Louisville on Saturday as well. Dre Davis is expected to play after missing the Boston College game due to an ankle injury. Davis averages 7.6 points and 3.6 rebounds per game.

On offense Louisville ranks in the bottom five among ACC teams, averaging only 69.3 points per game. It has had issues shooting the ball from everywhere on the floor. Louisville is posting an effective field goal percentage of just 48.9% and ranks 275th in three-point shooting, hitting at only a 31.3% clip. The Cardinals offense is most effective around the basket where it hits two-point shots at 50.2%.

The Louisville defense is what is winning this team games. Ranked 48th nationally in adjusted defensive efficiency, the Cardinals are limiting teams to 67.1 points per game. They have also been an amazing rebounding team, pulling down 39.1 boards per game, good for 29th in Division I  .

And finally the most important piece of this game for Louisville in my opinion is its three-point defense. The Cardinals have been solid at defending outside the arc, allowing opposing teams to hit 31% from deep. If the Cardinals want to beat the Irish, that number will need to be even better.

Notre Dame vs. Louisville Betting Pick

Notre Dame is a great team that has been on a heater recently,  but it has done the majority of it at home. On the road the Irish have been significantly worse, whereas Louisville has performed well on its home court.

Because of that, I think Louisville gets the win as it retires Russ Smith's jersey. I got Louisville at -1.5 and would take them as high as a five-point favorite. This line opened considerably lower than I thought it would and will be a three-unit play for me at -1.5.

Pick: Louisville -5 or better

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