Bettors are flocking towards the NFL this afternoon, but there’s a critical early-season matchup in Uncasville, CT that deserves attention. Here are my college basketball best bets for No. 5 Villanova vs. No. 6 Purdue in the Hall of Fame Tip-Off championship game.
Click on the odds below to bet now. You can continue the discussion in our betting channel, as we break down all of the games throughout the week.
College Basketball Best Bets: Sunday, Nov. 21
No. 5 Villanova Wildcats vs. No. 6 Purdue Boilermakers
Purdue not only boasts a size advantage in this contest, but it’s also going up against a Villanova defense that’s surrendering a top-150 two-point scoring rate. This metric entails that its opponents are scoring primarily from inside the arc. The Wildcats have accrued a bottom-20 shot block rate too.
Expect Painter to run his offense through big men Zach Edey and Trevion Williams from the get-go. Given the Boilermakers’ stout rebounding edge, they should have success pushing the tempo in transition and finding room at the rim. That negates Jay Wright’s methodical pace.
If their interior offense exposes the Wildcats, Sasha Stefanovic & Co. should be able to generate clean looks from behind the arc. Painter is running sets for Stefanovic similar to how he used sharpshooter Ryan Cline during Purdue’s 2019 Elite Eight run, as his ultra quick release makes for a taxing cover.
Wright possesses sound defenders in both Justin Moore and Brandon Slater, yet they won’t necessarily be glued to Stefanovic if they’re needed on the Boilermakers’ dribble penetration.
- More from Eli: 2021-22 College Basketball Power Rankings
At the other end, Villanova could unmask Purdue’s defensive concerns on the perimeter. North Carolina notched 1.09 points per possession (PPP) while shooting 41.2% from behind the arc on Saturday.
Nevertheless, Jaden Ivey’s elite on and off-ball defense will make it difficult for Moore to create open shooting pockets. The Wildcats also don’t possess a similar stretch five to UNC’s Dawson Garica, who dragged Edey or Williams out into 3-point territory.
Although Villanova is the higher ranked team in the AP Top 25, Purdue possesses more advantages in this affair. The market is even lending us a little more value after the Wildcats’ blowout win over Tennessee.
Eli’s College Basketball Best Bets: Purdue -2 (bet up to -2.5)
Best Available Line: Purdue -1.5