Houston vs Villanova Prediction: Can the Cougars Start Fast?

The Houston Cougars will take on the Villanova Wildcats in the first Elite Eight game tonight. Can the Cougars start fast or will the Wildcats control the pace? Joey Ruiz takes you through the matchup and shares his pick.
| 5 mins read
Share
Share to Facebook
Share to Twitter
Copy Link

Houston vs Villanova Prediction: Can the Cougars Start Fast?

Houston has been one of the most impressive teams in the tournament to this point. They come into this game after double-digit wins over UAB, Illinois, and then most impressively a 12-point win over number 1 seed Arizona. Houston has gotten the job done this year with their incredible effort on the defensive side of the ball and on the offensive/defensive glass.

Click Here for Houston vs Villanova Odds

 logo
Bet $5, Win $100 on the NBA in Virginia
  • Bet $5, Get $100
  • Promo Code WIN100
  • Virginia Sports Betting Exclusive

Claim Your $100 Now
T&Cs
DraftKings logo
Bet $5, Get $150 on the NBA Playoffs
  • NBA Playoff Exclusive
  • 30/1 odds
  • Boosted odds on your team winning!

Claim Your $150 Now
T&Cs
Fanduel logo
$1000 Risk Free Bet
  • Register for a new FanDuel account
  • Deposit up to $1000
  • Get your first deposit matched

Claim Your Risk-Free $1000
New Customers OnlyT&Cs
BetMGM logo
Bet $10, Win $200 If There's A 3-Pointer
  • Deposit $10 into your new BetMGM account
  • Bet $10 on any NBA Moneyline
  • Get $200 if your team scores a three

Claim Your $200 Now
New Customers OnlyT&Cs
Caesars Sportsbook logo
$1100 First Bet Insurance
  • Open a new Caesars Sportsbook account
  • Deposit up to $1100
  • Get your wager insured 100%

Claim Your Insured $1100
New Customers OnlyT&Cs
Unibet New Jersey logo
$250 Risk Free Bet
  • Claim A $250 Risk Free Bet
  • Use On Any Sport
  • New Customers Only

Claim Your $250 Now
T&Cs

Houston is currently ranked 10th in adjusted defensive efficiency, 3rd in defensive effective FG percentage, 9th in defensive 3-point percentage, and 9th in defensive 2-point percentage so they have been a very stout defensive team. The one thing that Houston struggled with on defense is defending without fouling as they are 291st in defensive foul rate.

If EITHER TEAM hits a 3-Pointer in Houston vs Villanova, you'll win $200

Villanova is the number 1 free-throw shooting team in the nation so Houston will need to make a concerted effort to keep the Wildcats off the free-throw line as Villanova has a significant advantage in that category. Another thing that I really like about Houston is that they are capable of playing at different paces throughout the game. UAB tried to speed them up and Houston was able to score 82 points on a lackluster UAB defense. Illinois tried to slow the game down but Houston's defense neutralized Cockburn and made Illinois very dependent on their outside shooting. Then, they completely slowed the game down against a very fast-paced team in Arizona and Houston dominated in the half-court on both sides of the ball and pretty much controlled that entire game from start to finish.

In Villanova's last game against Michigan, they had issues keeping the Wolverines off the glass. Michigan had a large size advantage with Dickinson and Diabate inside and was able to get 14 offensive rebounds in the game but could not take advantage as they only shot 34.4 percent from the floor as a team and just 50 percent from the free-throw line. This does not bode well for Villanova in this matchup as Houston is one of the best rebounding teams in the nation.

Want to bet on Houston vs Villanova? Use this DraftKings Offer and get 40/1 odds

Houston is currently ranked 3rd in the country in offensive rebounding percentage and Villanova is ranked 197th in defensive rebounding percentage so I think the Cougars will have a distinct advantage on the glass tonight. Josh Carlton and Fabian White Jr are very hard to handle on the inside and think they may be able to get Villanova's bigs into foul trouble. This is another concern for the Wildcats as they run a very tight rotation and really only play 6 guys for the entirety of most games. Villanova has been incredible in the second half of games this year due to their consistency, experience, and ability to knock down key free throws but they have been most susceptible in the first half of games this year and Houston is the complete opposite.

Bet $5 on the MONEYLINE for Houston vs Villanova and win $200 if your team wins

Houston have been absolute juggernauts in the opening half of games this season, and I think they get off to another fast start tonight. With that being said, I am rolling with Houston 1H ML at -135 for 1U as one of my most confident college basketball picks of the night.

Houston vs Villanova Pick

Pick: 1 unit - Houston 1H ML (-135) (Bet $135 to Win $100)

If you're in need of the best sportsbook promos available, you've come to the right place

Caesars Sportsbook logo
$1100 First Bet Insurance
  • Open a new Caesars Sportsbook account
  • Deposit up to $1100
  • Get your wager insured 100%

Claim Your Insured $1100
New Customers OnlyT&Cs
Fanduel logo
$1000 Risk Free Bet
  • Register for a new FanDuel account
  • Deposit up to $1000
  • Get your first deposit matched

Claim Your Risk-Free $1000
New Customers OnlyT&Cs
BetMGM logo
Bet $10, Win $200 If There's A 3-Pointer
  • Deposit $10 into your new BetMGM account
  • Bet $10 on any NBA Moneyline
  • Get $200 if your team scores a three

Claim Your $200 Now
New Customers OnlyT&Cs
DraftKings logo
Bet $5, Win $200 on the MLB
  • Deposit $5 into your new DraftKings account
  • Bet on any MLB Moneyline
  • Get $200 if your team wins

Claim Now
New Customers OnlyT&Cs

Click here for the best offers in your state

ROI 9%
NCAABNBAMLB
insightpicks

Joey has spent the last 6+ years betting on sports with a focus on basketball and baseball. Basketball is his main focus, and not many people know more about mid-major basketball than him. Whether you need advice on a Saturday night primetime game or a Tuesday night back-alley SWAC/MEAC game, Joey is your man.

Expert Handicappers

View all Handicappers
0Betslip

Almost there!

We are loading your bets, and they will be here in a second.