Villanova vs. Providence Betting Line – February 6

Written by:
Carrie Stroup
Published on:
Villanova vs. Providence Betting Line – February 6

Carrie Stroup here with your Villanova vs. Providence betting line for Saturday

VILLANOVA WILDCATS (19-3, 9-1 Big East) at PROVIDENCE FRIARS (18-5, 6-4 Big East)

Villanova -5           

No. 3 Villanova will try to win its 10th Big East game of the season when it looks for payback at No. 11 Providence on Saturday afternoon.

The Wildcats (10-10-1 ATS overall) are 11-1 in their past dozen games, but the lone loss in that span occurred at home versus the Friars two weeks ago in an entertaining 82-76 overtime affair. Villanova is 6-1 SU in true road games this season, but is only 2-4-1 ATS in these contests.

Since that upset in Philadelphia, the Friars (13-9 ATS overall) have lost two of three, including a head-scratching 77-70 defeat at 8-point underdog DePaul on Tuesday. They also lost Big East leading scorer F Ben Bentil to a sprained right ankle that game, and Bentil is questionable to play Saturday for his team that is 10-3 SU (but only 5-7 ATS) at home this season.

Villanova has preferred playing on shorter rest this season, going 9-0 SU and 7-2 ATS when playing on 0-to-2 days of rest, compared to a woeful 3-8-1 ATS on 3+ days rest. Providence has not lost two in row SU all season, going 4-0 SU and 3-0 ATS and holding opponents to a mere 62.8 PPG when coming off a loss.

The Wildcats may also be without a key big man on Saturday, as C Daniel Ochefu (9.7 PPG, 8.3 RPG) is questionable due to a concussion.

Villanova's offense scores 75.6 PPG on a solid 46.0% FG and excellent 75.8% FT, and makes a conference-best 8.6 threes per game despite a subpar 33.0% clip on threes. This team doesn't usually turn the ball over (11.3 TOPG) and dishes out a hefty 15.8 APG for a stellar 1.40 Ast/TO ratio.

The Wildcats really shine on the defensive end, where they hold opponents to a paltry 61.1 PPG on 38.2% FG and 32.5% threes. This team forces 14.0 TOPG thanks largely to 7.0 SPG, and does a decent job on the boards too with a +2.4 RPG margin.

Junior swingman Josh Hart (15.5 PPG, 7.4 RPG, 1.3 SPG) is the team's leading scorer whose 52% FG rate ranks second in the Big East. Hart scored 18 points with five rebounds in the loss to Providence on Jan. 24, and has tallied 14.5 PPG and 10.0 RPG in two games since.

PG Ryan Arcidiacono (12.4 PPG, 4.0 APG, 1.4 SPG) also played well against Providence with a team-high 19 points on 6-of-12 shooting. Although the senior ranks third in the Big East in Ast/TO ratio at 2.4, he has twice as many turnovers (8) as assists (4) in his past three contests.

Junior F Kris Jenkins (11.0 PPG, 3.5 RPG) is coming off a 22-point effort versus Creighton on Wednesday that followed a double-double of 14 points and 11 boards in Sunday's victory at St. John's. Jenkins had a well-rounded 11 points, five rebounds and a team-high seven assists in the Jan. 24 loss to the Friars.

The final double-digit scorer for Villanova is freshman G Jalen Brunson (10.3 PPG, 2.9 APG), who scored 16 points on 6-of-9 FG (4-of-6 threes) on Wednesday, but also committed a season-high four turnovers, giving him 10 miscues over the past three games. The Wildcats would love to have Ochefu back on the court, as he leads the Big East in blocks (1.9 BPG) and recorded seven points and 11 rebounds (6 offensive) versus the Friars two weeks ago.

Providence scores only 73.9 PPG due to poor shooting rates of 42.6% FG and 31.1% threes, but is strong from the foul line at 72.4% FT. Despite the sometimes questionable shot selection, this team knows how to handle the basketball with 15.7 APG and only 11.6 TOPG, good for a 1.35 Ast/TO ratio.

This team also plays solid defense that holds opponents to 67.9 PPG on 43.2% FG and 31.2% threes. The 7.1 steals per game helps the Friars force 15.3 TOPG and post a conference-best +3.7 turnover margin, but the rebounding margin isn't great at +1.1 RPG.

Bentil has been a huge part of this team's success at 19.7 PPG (best in Big East) and 7.8 RPG (5th in conference) with stellar shooting rates of 48% FG (5th in Big East) and 82% FT (4th in conference). Bentil destroyed Villanova on Jan. 24 with 31 points (11-of-19 FG, 8-of-10 FT) and 13 rebounds, and seven of those boards came on the offensive glass.

G Kris Dunn (17.2 PPG, 6.0 RPG) is dynamic in all facets, and ranks second in the nation in steals (3.1 SPG) and eighth in assists (6.9 APG). He had 14 assists in the win over Villanova to go along with 13 points, five rebounds and four steals, but Dunn also committed six turnovers in that victory.

Sophomore F Rodney Bullock (12.3 PPG, 7.2 RPG) has the most double-doubles on the team with six, but was quiet against the Wildcats two weeks ago with eight points and five rebounds in 34 minutes of action.

Nobody else on the team averages seven points per game, but both guards Kyron Cartwright (5.4 PPG, 3.4 APG) and Junior Lomomba (6.2 PPG, 2.0 APG) played big roles in their team's win at Villanova on Jan. 24, combining for 25 points, six rebounds, six assists and two steals.

- Carrie Stroup, Senior Reporter

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