Yesterday was a big day.
The Villanova Wildcats were matched up against the Creighton Bluejays just 19 days after getting embarrassed by 20 by the same team in Omaha. And yea, the ‘Cats beat #18 Xavier and handled that scrub #15 Seton Hall team in between, but Creighton was still on their mind. I mean, it wasn’t a good showing.
Early on in the day I looked at the line, as a wager-placing aficionado like myself does, and I saw that Villanova was favored -10. Holy sheep shit Sally that’s a big number. Coming off of a 20-point loss under three weeks ago? Does home court advantage really swing a game 30 points? I almost liked it more because it was so high. But I didn’t take it, figuring my bias was getting in the way of a smart decision.
Then pregame started. Masks were mandatory for all fans that went to the game if not eating or drinking. Very few masks were being worn. I liked it even more. Kris Jenkins followed me on twitter, nbd. The coaching staff was decked out in their athletic light blue pullovers and Furious George’s hair looked better than ever.
Then came this stat; Jay Wright is 499-194 as Villanova’s head coach.
Hammer down. Put the mortgage, the retirement and the kid’s college fund (responsibly) on the Wildcats laying the points. There’s no way Jay loses with a chance to notch #500 in the Pavilion against a Big East opponent.
And so it was. Villanova jumped ahead early, stretched it to 14 by halftime, scored the first seven points after the break and it was over. Jon Rothstein had the tweet written with 13:00 to go in the game. 75-41.
The defense was stingy, they hit threes, didn’t turn the ball over and Justin Moore is quickly turning into your favorite player’s favorite player.
The ‘Cats jumped three spots in the NET Rankings to #8, they’re now #6 in KenPom and have the best strength of schedule of anybody in the top 200. They’re top 20 in both offensive efficiency and defensive efficiency; one of eight teams in the country.
Their four losses, all on the road*, have been to UCLA, Purdue, Baylor and of course Creighton.
I’m not sayin’, I’m just sayin’.
*Purdue loss was at a neutral sight in tip-off tournament