Virginia Cavaliers (32-3) at Purdue Boilermakers (26-7)
NCAA Basketball: Saturday, March 30th, 2019, at 8:29 pm (KFC Yum! Center)
Lines & Odds: Virginia -4.5; Over/Under 127
March Madness Pick Virginia Cavaliers vs Purdue Boilermakers
Purdue versus Virginia should be an intriguing matchup as both teams are very disciplined and well coached. While Virginia play through stifling defense as well as fundamental basketball, Purdue also plays through fundamental basketball but places more emphasis on offense. This matchup will be a battle of intelligence as both teams play an intelligent brand of basketball. The question that begs as this matchup approaches is…who will enforce their IQ to seal a trip to the Final Four?
Virginia Cavaliers (32-3) #1
The Cavaliers barely escaped the Oregon Ducks to squeeze into the Elite Eight. Purdue presents another problem for the Cavaliers to answer in pursuit of a national title.The Cavaliers will have to truly contain the three-point shooting of the Boilermakers as Purdue shoots 37.1 % (49th). Purdue depends on the three-point ball to open up spacing for the functionality of their offense.Virginia will have to run Purdue off the three-point line to truly disrupt their offensive rhythm. Purdue does not have many on-ball playmakers, so Virginia’s stifling defense, holding opponents to a nation leading 54.8 PPG, will play a very crucial role limiting scoring opportunities for Purdue. Defense may be Virginia’s bread and butter, but they’re also a very efficient offense. According to Virginia’s offensive numbers, the Cavaliers shoots 47.6% (32nd), 2PT%: 52.8% (79th), 3PT%: 39.6% (6th), FT%: 74% (68th), AST: 500 (60th), and TOV: 318 (4th). Virginia are one of the most complete teams in the Elite Eight, and will be difficult to defeat. In order for the Cavaliers to claim victory over the Boilermakers, Virginia will need to force them into two-pointers as they shoot 51.4% (140th) and foul trouble as they commit 606 fouls (236th). If Virginia can continue to play their brand of ball like they have all season, they will most likely win this matchup.
Purdue Boilermakers (26-9) #3
The Boilermakers held a 18-point lead against Tennessee to only lose it in regulation and redeem themselves in OT to earn a Elite Eight spot. However, the Boilermakers have a huge task on their hands as the Virginia Cavaliers are a defensive nightmare, allowing opponents to score 54.8 PPG, the best in the nation. The Cavaliers will attempt to contain Carsen Edwards (23.8 PPG, 3 APG, 3.7 RPG, & 3PT%:34.6%), the Boilermakers’ leading scorer as he’s the catalyst of the offense, and Purdue goes as he does. The Boilermakers are strong on offense from the three-point line, shooting 37.1% (49th) as well as on the offensive boards with 414 (29th), 372 turnovers (42nd), and 76.7 PPG (74th). On defense,the Boilermakers are not bad as they hold opponents to 66.9 PPG (56th) and are a decent defensive rebounding team with 896 (81st). Nevertheless, the Boilermakers will need to crash the offensive boards as the Cavaliers are 209th in the nation with 310 and produce more points as the Cavaliers averages 71 PPG (221st) in order to earn an upset victory and a trip to the Final Four.
Cover The Spread 365 Trends
Virginia is 17-8 ATS in its last 25 games
Virginia is 2-4 ATS in its last 6 games
Virginia is 12-1 SU in its last 13 games
The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Virginia’s last 5 games
Purdue is 4-1 ATS in its last 5 games
Purdue is 17-3 SU in its last 20 games
The total has gone OVER in 5 of Purdue’s last 7 games
March Madness Prediction Virginia Cavaliers vs Purdue Boilermakers
This will be a great matchup as Purdue will bring resilient effort to prove that they belong among the remaining teams. However, Virginia will need to prove that they were worthy of being given a No. 1 seeding as well as proving they are legitimate national title contenders. Purdue will look to impose their fast tempo offense early on to beat the stifling half-court defense of the Cavaliers. In contrast, the Cavaliers will need to slow down the tempo to truly impose their stifling defense as well as limit the offensive opportunities of the Boilermakers. Virginia are too much of a matured, disciplined, and patient team to be rattled by Purdue’s fast paced offense. The Cavaliers will end Purdue’s season and punch their ticket into the Final Four.
Pick: Under 127