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Villanova vs. Creighton Odds & Picks: Target Friday Night’s Total

Villanova vs. Creighton Odds & Picks: Target Friday Night’s Total article feature image

Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Dhamir Cosby-Roundtree

  • Villanova and Creighton open up their Big East seasons with a duel in Omaha, Nebraska.
  • The Wildcats are coming off of a disappointing loss to Baylor, while the Bluejays lost at home in their last time out against Arizona State.
  • Keg breaks down where the value lies in this conference tilt.

Villanova vs. Creighton Odds

Friday, Dec. 17
8 p.m. ET
Villanova Odds
-110o / -110u
Creighton Odds
-110o / -110u
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute college basketball odds here.

Both teams will enter this opening Big East affair looking to bounce back from losses, as Villanova travels to Omaha to take on Creighton on Friday night. The Wildcats are coming off of a blowout loss to the best team in the nation in Baylor, which cruised to a 57-36 win over the Wildcats.

Creighton, meanwhile, is looking to find some type of rhythm heading into conference play.

The Bluejays are 1-2 in their last three games, and while they beat a 25th-ranked KenPom team in BYU, 83-71, on a neutral court, they’ve come up short at home against Iowa State and Arizona State, two teams that rank 52nd and 100th, respectively.

Now, against the best team they’ve played so far this season, and once again at home, will the Bluejays be able to find the spark they had against BYU?

Both teams have shown the ability to be defensive powerhouses. But whoever can control the time of possession and win the battle around the rim, will likely kick off conference play with a win.

Villanova Wildcats

A 7-3 start to the season would be good for any program, except Jay Wright and the Villanova Wildcats. Even though all three of Nova’s losses have come against top-10 teams, Wright knows there’s still work to do and things the team needs to figure out.

In their last game, Baylor dominated in nearly facet, but specifically around the basket. Baylor out-rebounded the Wildcats 37-33. Villanova simply could not score from anywhere, shooting just 22.2% from both in and outside the 3-point line.

Creighton does measure out as a taller team then Baylor on average, but it doesn’t have the same level of defensive dominance.

In every big game for the Wildcats so far this year, one major issues seems to be a common denominator: depth. In its game against the Bears, Villanova had just six points off the bench. Also, the Wildcats rank 277th in the country in bench minutes.

While four players average more than 10 points per game for Villanova, six players average less than three. When the starting five need a rest, the Wildcats are a completely different team.

But it’s not all bad for the Wildcats, who are once again one of the best defensive teams in the nation. Villanova ranks 42nd in the country, limiting opponents to just 61.5 points per game. They also rank 21st, per KenPom, in defensive adjusted efficiency.

Villanova also plays at an extremely slow pace (top 10 in college basketball), but it has been able to average 74 points per game.

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Creighton Bluejays

In their last game as a 7.5-point favorite at home, the Bluejays lost outright to Arizona State. They moved to 8-3 on the season after that matchup, but more importantly, they have covered the spread in just four games this year.

Against Arizona State, two issues alone led to the demise of the Bluejays: shooting and turnovers. Creighton posted 14 turnovers while shooting just 38.9%. From the free throw line, the Bluejays had more than three times the attempts, but managed to only make 62.5%.

Even with such an abysmal performance, the Bluejays only lost by one to an Arizona State team that shot 41.7%. If they post the same level of offense against Villanova, I would expect a much bigger loss.

On defense, the Bluejays have been able to limit opponents to just 65.4 points per game. They’ve also been one of the best teams in the country at defending two-point shots, ranking 15th and limiting opponents to just 42.4% inside the arc.

Creighton ranks 72nd, per KenPom, in adjusted offensive efficiency and is averaging 73.4 points per game.

Villanova vs. Creighton Betting Pick

This is a matchup between two teams that play at a slow pace and are currently struggling to score, so expect this game to be yet another low-scoring affair.

Neither of these team have a problem slowing down and taking their time on every single possession regardless of the score. Also, both have been elite on defense. In fact, Creighton has allowed 65 or fewer points in five of its last six games.

Both Creighton and Villanova need a win, and always play each other close. I expect this to be a close, low-scoring battle, which is why I’m betting the under at 129.5 and would feel confident at 128 or better.

Pick: Under 128 or better

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