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NCAAB

Mar 19, 2022

Ohio State Buckeyes vs. Villanova Wildcats Picks, Predictions, Odds

Sunday’s NCAA Tournament slate in the South Region features a Big Ten/Big East battle between the Ohio State Buckeyes and the Villanova Wildcats at PPG Paints Arena in Pittsburgh. Game time on CBS is set for a 2:40 p.m. (ET) tip.

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Score Prediction

Villanova 70, Ohio State 63

Best Bet

Villanova -5.5 (-110)

NCAA Tournament Expert Picks | NIT Tournament Picks

MARCH MADNESS BETTING RESOURCES

OHIO STATE BUCKEYES vs. VILLANOVA WILDCATS PREDICTIONS

Ohio State’s opening round game against Chicago Loyola closed as a PICK but the Buckeyes stepped up their game to win by 13 points. This was just their second straight-up win in their last six games. Ohio State made an early exit in the recent Big Ten Tournament with a three-point loss to Penn State as a 5.5-point favorite.

Villanova faced Delaware in its opening round matchup and cruised to a 20-point victory as a 15-point favorite. This extended the Wildcats’ current SU winning streak to six games. They won the Big East Tournament with a six-point victory against Creighton as 6.5-point favorites. Their only loss since early February was on the road against Connecticut in a two-point setback that ended as a PUSH.

There was not doubt that Ohio State’s playing form was suspect coming into the Big Dance. Friday’s win answers a few questions about this team but I do not think the Buckeyes are up to the task of keeping this game closer than the current 5.5-point spread. Villanova has been playing at a very high level since the beginning of March in what could be another deep run in this tournament.

OHIO STATE BUCKEYES vs. VILLANOVA WILDCATS BETTING ODDS

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OHIO STATE BUCKEYES vs. VILLANOVA WILDCATS BETTING RESOURCES

  • Date: Sunday, March 20, 2022
  • Matchup: No. 7 vs. No. 2
  • Region: South
  • Venue: PPG Paints Arena
  • Location: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
  • TV-Time: CBS - 2:40 p.m. ET

OHIO STATE BUCKEYES BETTING ANALYSIS

Straight Up - SU, Against the Spread - ATS, Over-Under (O/U)

  • SU: 20-11
  • ATS: 16-15
  • O/U: 18-13

Ohio State has gone 6-6 both SU and against the spread going back to a road loss to Rutgers on Feb. 9. The Buckeyes closed as favorites in each of those six losses, including head scratchers against Maryland and Nebraska at the tail end of the regular season. The total stayed well UNDER the 133.5-point line in Friday’s 54-41 grinder over Chicago Loyola after going OVER in five of their previous seven games.

The Buckeyes have gone 20-11 SU this season with a 16-15 record ATS. Closing as underdogs in eight or those games, they were 5-3 ATS. Ohio State is an even 2-2 ATS in four previous neutral-site games. The total went OVER or ended as a PUSH in 19 of 31 games overall.

Friday’s game was not pretty from an offensive standpoint but the Buckeyes did prove they can play defense when they have to. EJ Liddell supplied most of the offensive firepower with 16 points with Big Ten Freshman of the Year Malaki Branham stepping up his game with 14 points.

Ohio State head coach Chris Holtmann called this one of his team’s best defensive performances in recent memory. However, holding this Sunday’s opponent to just 18 first half points is a whole other story.

VILLANOVA WILDCATS BETTING ANALYSIS

Straight Up - SU, Against the Spread - ATS, Over-Under (O/U)

  • SU: 27-7
  • ATS: 17-15-2
  • O/U: 17-16-1

The Wildcats have been an up and down betting team during their current six-game winning streak at 3-3 ATS. They failed to cover as favorites in tight wins against Providence and St. John’s earlier this month. The total went OVER 135.5 points in Friday’s 80-60 victory after staying UNDER in their previous three games. Villanova has not allowed more than 65 points in any of its last five games.

At 27-7 SU overall, the Wildcats posted a 17-15-2 record ATS. They were 16-12-1 ATS this season closing as favorites and 3-4 ATS in seven games played at a neutral site. The betting results on the total line were basically even at 17-16-1.

Villanova was able to grind out a 35-25 lead at the half against Delaware before pulling away over the next 20 minutes. Justin Moore led the way with 21 points and Colin Gillespie added 14 more to the winning cause. This duo has been leading the way all season long.

The Wildcats shot 50.9% from the field on Friday while hitting 13 of their 28 attempts from three- point range. They also concerted on 11 of 12 attempts from the free throw line. The team’s performance under the boards was less impressive with 33 total rebounds but they did hold the Blue Hens to just 23 rebounds in this game.

Villanova has won 21 of its last 22 games vs. a non-AP-ranked school on a neutral court during the daytime. (AP)

INSIDE THE STATS - OHIO STATE BUCKEYES

  • Record: 20-11
  • PS/G: 73.2 (119th)
  • PA/G: 67.6 (133rd)

INSIDE THE STATS - VILLANOVA WILDCATS

  • Record: 27-7
  • PS/G: 72.9 (128th)
  • PA/G: 63 (25th)

KEY PLAYERS TO WATCH

  • OHST: E.J. Liddell - F (19.5 ppg, 8 rpg)
  • OHST: Malaki Branham - G (13.4 ppg)
  • NOVA: Collin Gillespie - G (15.9 ppg)
  • NOVA: Justin Moore - G (15.2 ppg, 5 rpg)

OHIO STATE BUCKEYES vs. VILLANOVA WILDCATS BETTING CONCLUSION

When healthy, Ohio State is a much better team than its overall record indicates. However, the Buckeyes are stepping way up in class on Sunday afternoon. I see the Wildcats wearing them down just enough to cover the 5.5-point spread.

MARCH MADNESS PICK RESOURCES

OHIO STATE BUCKEYES vs. VILLANOVA WILDCATS BETTING TRENDS

  • Villanova has won 21 of its last 22 games vs. a non-AP-ranked school on a neutral court during the daytime.
  • Ohio State has lost 1H in eight straight games when facing a Top 10 AP-ranked school.
  • Ohio State has scored 68 points or more in 11 straight games when facing an AP-ranked school.
  • Villanova has seen 135 or more total points in 11 straight games vs. a non-AP-ranked school on a neutral court during the daytime.
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