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UW-Milwaukee Panthers vs. Villanova Wildcats Gambling & NCAA Tournament Prediction

UW-Milwaukee vs Villanova CBB Picks

The Villanova Wildcats have drawn a No. 2 seed in the 2014 NCAA Tournament, and their first opponent of the March Madness postseason will be the 15th-seeded Milwaukee Panthers out of Wisconsin. [ad-4468020]

2014 NCAA Tournament Free Picks
15 Milwaukee (21-13, 7-9 Horizon) @ 2 Villanova (28-4, 16-2)
Thursday, March 20 9:25 PM ET
East Region Handicapping – Second Round
Spread: Villanova -16.5

ATS Matchup Insight | CP Insider Gambling Preview

With the Wildcats coming off of a disappointing showing in their conference tournament, it will be important to note whether they come out with motivation or lackluster expectations. Chances are, the team’s early exit in the Big East Tournament will act as a kick in the right direction, giving Villanova the momentum it needs early.

Milwaukee

The Panthers may have earned a solid 23-13 record during the regular season, but winning the Horizon League tournament over Wright State is what has landed them in the Big Dance.

On the season, Milwaukee played consistently on both sides of the ball. They averaged 70.9 points per contest while giving up 70.5, and they shot 43.3 percent from the field while allowing their opponents to shoot 43.6.
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The biggest difference comes at the three-point line, where the Panthers shot just 32.7 percent but held their opponents to 31.5. Villanova shot a solid 36.1 percent from deep range on the year, which is why it will be important for Milwaukee to make every open opportunity it gets from the opening tipoff.

Villanova

The Villanova Wildcats may be a No. 2 seed, but they’re being considered a trendy upset victim in many third and fourth rounds. Why is this? Look no further than their unimposing regular season resume.

Despite defeating then-No. 2 Kansas 63-59 back on Nov. 29, the team lost to Creighton twice by an average of 24.5 points per contest and it fell to then-No. 2 Syracuse by 16 points. Even the win over Kansas is less impressive when you consider the fact that Andrew Wiggins, as hyped as he’s been all year, was not the player to start the year that he is today.

All that aside, remember that this is the second round—not the third or fourth. Don’t overthink this one too much. It’s true that the Panthers have a point guard in Jordan Aaron who score 15 points per game on the year, who has just as much momentum as his team, but the Wildcats have talent across the board when it comes to their rotation.

Don’t be shocked if Villanova struggles later in the tournament, but don’t be surprised, either, if it takes care of business in Round 2 Thursday night.

Prediction: Villanova 78 – Milwaukee 63

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