Happy Thursday Nova Nation! Last night was an ugly win, but it’s probably the ugly win I’d prefer to have. Just not prefer to watch. Shots will eventually fall, so when the biggest issue is that the team isn’t shooting well that’s a good sign. But boy is it hard on the eyes, simply ugly.
But ugly or not, Villanova now has a new school record of 10 consecutive victories to start Big East play. So with that, here are a few things on my mind heading into the Marquette game on Saturday:
It’s Big East Crunch Time
Saturday is the first time this season that some teams may start to be eliminated from the Big East Regular Season Championship race. If Villanova is able to win on the road, Providence and Xavier could be eliminated with losses in their games on Saturday.
As for Villanova, a win would put them in a really good spot to clinch a fifth Big East title in six seasons. According to KenPom, Villanova currently has an 11.7% chance to win six of their remaining eight games, which would clinch at least a share of the title. To put that into perspective, Marquette has a 2% chance to win out and clinch a share at this point. A win at Marquette would bump Nova’s chances up to 19.8% as they’d then only need to win four of their final seven.
Overcoming bad shooting
A staple of Jay Wright teams in recent seasons has been the ability to win games even when the shots aren’t falling. That’s exactly what the Wildcats did last night, picking up a “W” despite shooting under 40% for the game. It’s actually the second time this season that the Wildcats have pulled it off, winning against St. Joe’s despite shooting 36.5% from the field.
How streaky can Nova get?
The Wildcats school record 10 game winning streak to start Big East play is impressive, but what’s the next hurdle to clear. Jay Wright would tell you one game at a time, but here are the milestones on the horizon for Villanova’s streak:
- School record for consecutive Big East wins: 12 (2015)
- Big East record for consecutive wins to start a season: 14 (1996 UConn)
- School record for consecutive wins: 16 (2015)
- No team has ever gone 18-0 in a Big East season
And that leads me to one final question before we get to the links...
How will Villanova finish in the Big East?
This poll is closed
In other “news”, Bryan Antoine is the Shore’s greatest scorer of all-time, Creighton’s final “basket” lost Nova fans money, and the Selection Committee Chair speaks on the NET. Enjoy!
Villanova defeats Creighton
No. 14 Villanova beats Creighton in overtime, 66-59 | The Inquirer
Phil Booth's clutch basket gave the Wildcats the overtime win.
Watch: Villanova-Creighton missed call produces brutal bad beat | SI.com
It appeared that Kaleb Joseph's basket at the end of overtime should not have counted.
Men's Basketball Falls in Overtime At No. 14 Villanova | Go Creighton
Playing without starting guards Marcus Zegarowski and Ty-Shon Alexander, the Creighton men's basketball team pushed the defending national champion and No. 14-ranked Villanova Wildcats to overtime before falling 66-59, on Wednesday night at renovated Finneran Pavilion.
Class of 2019
NJ hoops: Ranney's Antoine breaks Shore scoring record | APP
Ranney's Bryan Antoine broke the 46-year-old record of 2,302 points to become the Jersey Shore's all-time leading scorer on Wednesday.
Antoine, Ranney Eye History in Final Week of Regular Season | Shore Sports Network
Bryan Antoine is 20 points from becoming the Shore's all-time leading scorer and will pursue the record during a jam-packed final week of the final regular-season for Ranney's historic senior class.
AUDIO: College Basketball Coast 2 Coast - Big East brouhaha | CBB Today
The College Basketball Coast 2 Coast Podcast is back. Join host T.J. Rives, and guests, as they discuss the Big East Conference and...
The Loop Final Four Countdown: Best NCAA Cinderellas | Twin Cities
The Cinderella story. It’s as much of an American favorite as the hot dog, apple pie, the automobile and binge-watching on Netflix.
Villanova vs Marquette Predictions and Spread (CBB Picks and Odds- Feb 9) | Wager Talk
Villanova Wildcats vs Marquette Golden Eagles Predictions, Picks and Odds for their College Basketball showdown on February 9, 2019, from Fiserv Forum. Direct from Las Vegas, WagerTalk.com, TV host Ralph Michaels, Marco D’Angelo and Preston Johnson look at the Vegas odds and give their college basketball expert picks
College basketball: Catch up guide to Zion, 2018-19 season | SI.com
Are you a football fan just now turning your attention to college hoops and wondering what the deal is with Tennessee at No. 1, the never-ending Zion hype or who Ja Morant is? We've got just what you need.
Duke's Zion Williamson and Oregon's Sabrina Ionescu lead Wooden Late-Season lists | ESPN
The late-season top 20 for both the men's and women's Wooden Award was announced on Monday night, with Duke's Zion Williamson and Oregon's Sabrina Ionescu leading the way.
Arizona suspends assistant Mark Phelps over alleged rules violation | ESPN
Arizona men's basketball assistant coach Mark Phelps has been suspended, with sources telling ESPN he is accused of a violation regarding former Wildcats recruit Shareef O'Neal's academic transcripts.
The new NCAA Tournament selection committee chair talks about the NET and how bracket will be built | CBSSports.com
Matt Norlander's inside look at college hoops also sheds light on which teams probably wish the RPI was still around
Brackets and Bubbles
Indiana, Syracuse, Auburn lead NCAA tournament bubble teams | SI.com
Our first in-depth look at the NCAA tournament bubble this season breaks down which teams have work to do to be in position for an at-large bid on Selection Sunday.
March Madness bracket projections: Kentucky, UNC shoot up to 2-seed line | Sporting News
As we inch nearer to March Madness, we here at Sporting News are here to offer our best projections for the NCAA Tournament.