#3 Villanova vs St. John's

#3 Villanova vs St. John’s | 2021 NCAA Basketball Expert Analysis

Written by on February 2, 2021

Third-ranked Villanova remains the only team in the Big East without a conference loss and the Wildcats will be favored on the NCAAB odds to stay that way when they visit a dangerous St. John’s team on Wednesday.

How to Bet Villanova at St. John’s NCAA Basketball Odds & TV Info

  • When: Wednesday, 9 PM ET
  • Where: Carnesecca Arena, Queens
  • TV: CBS Sports Network
  • Stream: CBS Sports app
  • Radio:com
  • Opening NCAAB Lines: TBA (Villanova will be favored)

Last Meeting

These schools were supposed to meet for the first time back on Dec. 30 in Philadelphia but that was postponed and they will no play there on Feb. 23. Last year, the Wildcats won both meetings. The one at St. John’s was 79-59 even though Nova was without a key player in Jermaine Samuels (still on team). Saddiq Bey (now in NBA) scored 23 points, and Collin Gillespie had 17 points and 13 rebounds. The Cats made 12 3-pointers and limited St. John’s to four free throws. St. John’s jumped out to a seven-point lead in the first three minutes, but the Wildcats took control with a 13-0 run that gave them a 28-19 advantage. Villanova closed the first half with the final seven points and was ahead 39-26 at the break.

Why Bet on Villanova? | 2021 NCAA Basketball Expert Analysis

The Wildcats (11-1) improved to 6-0 in the Big East with an 80-72 win at a good Seton Hall team on Saturday. Villanova built a double-digit lead midway through the first half and were really never threatened in handing Seton Hall its third straight loss to a ranked opponent.

The Cats’ Jeremiah Robinson-Earl finished 8 of 12 from the field for 23 points and hit all five of his free throws. He missed 14 minutes in the second half after picking up his third and fourth fouls early, but returned for the final three minutes and scored six points to seal the win.

“He scored 23 points, but he is so good defensively and he’s the centerpiece of our defense,” Nova coach Jay Wright said. “He can guard any position, but he also communicates out there. He’s always talking. So that’s what we really missed when he was out.”

Senior Jermaine Samuels added 17 points, Justin Moore had 16 points and Collin Gillespie established a new career high with 11 assists while contributing 11 points.

[Moore] had a really bad sprained thumb for a while, and it really affected his shooting,” said. “It wasn’t something we wanted to talk about, and we didn’t want anyone to know it. … I think we saw him healthy, and it was big for us, especially in the first half.”

Samuels scored the first four points after the break and Robinson-Earl added five more before picking up his fourth foul at the 16:24 mark of the period. By that juncture the Wildcats held a 46-32 lead. It was a quieter game for the Villanova bench, who only had six points, but Wright isn’t concerned. He believes there’s still plenty of potential with his reserves.

“This year was the year where they were starting to play and understand what they’re doing,” Wright said. “But when you get shut down it affects the guys off the bench more than the starters.”

Why Bet on St. John’s? | 2021 NCAA Basketball Expert Analysis

The Red Storm (11-7) won their fourth in a row Sunday, 75-73 at Marquette to improve to 5-6 in the Big East. The game was a late switch after St. John’s game with visiting UConn was postponed when the Huskies went into modified quarantine for COVID-19 exposure.

Ahead by 15, 46-31, at the break, St. John’s saw Marquette open the second half with a 20-5 run in the span of just over five minutes to tie the game at 51.  The Red Storm responded with a 12-2 burst of their own to bump the lead back to double digits, 63-53, at the midway mark of the period. Marquette shaved its deficit down to one three times in the final four minutes, but the Johnnies had an answer every time.

The leading scorer in the Big East at 19.8 ppg, Julian Champagnie led the way for St. John’s with 22 points on 7-of-14 shooting, including a 4-of-7 effort from beyond the arc.  Champagnie, who also grabbed a team-high seven boards, has reached double figures in all 16 of his appearances this season with seven 20-point efforts.

Post Alexander finished with 15 points, three assists and a season-high six steals in 34 minutes of action


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