Saint Mary's vs. Villanova Game Line Comes Down as Heavy Early Action on Gaels

Written by:
Dan Shapiro
Published on:

The betting public is loving the Saint Mary's Gaels as a +5 underdog, and we are seeing a handful of books moving to +4.5.


Saint Mary's - The Gaels are a big public favorite and the books aren't taking any chances as they follow the action by moving the line down towards possibly +4 when all is said and done.  They were seeing 75% of the spread action well ahead of tip off.  Saint Mary's opened at +6. 

They earned instant street cred coming into this week's tournament after beating Goliath Gonzaga earlier this month.

The Gaels played at the seventh-slowest tempo in college basketball season, averaging under 63 total possessions.  They typically control the pace of the game.

There is a reason why the Villanova opened at -6.

From ESPN.com: "Saint Mary's has been up and down this season, struggling to put everything together at times. When they click, the way they did in the conference tournament, the Gaels are a tough team to beat. If Saint Mary's is out of sync, it could spell an early end to the tournament."

Without a win against Gonzaga, chances are we wouldn't be talking about Saint Mary's.  The Bulldogs are really the only ranked team the Gaels beat this season.  The next best win was against another Tournament qualifier, New Mexico State.

Villanova - Jay Wright's team lost four players to the NBA after winning it all yet rebounded to win the regular-season Big East crown.  Like the Gaels, Villanova plays at a slow pace. 

Villanova does not shoot 3s well and, relying on jump shots tends to lead to long scoring droughts. 

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- Dan Shapiro, Gambling911.com

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