The Big Ten Tournament moves into the quarterfinals on Thursday, March 11. And hey, DePaul is still here! This will be the first time they’ve played a second game in the Big East Tournament since 2014. Yay Blue Demons! You did better than Northwestern in postseason this year!
They weren’t the only higher seed to advance, as The Butler Way stuck Xavier’s slim bubble hopes with a sharpened needle.
We’ve got everything you need to know for today’s action from Madison Square Garden in New York City. And our two authors might have some disagreements here.
No. 8 Georgetown vs. No. 1 Villanova: 12 p.m. ET, FS1
Point Spread: Villanova -8.5
Point Total: 140
Ameer: The Hoyas ran through Marquette in the first round 68-49, but the Wildcats are a different beast. Villanova has undoubtedly taken a step back with Collin Gillespie out for the year, but they did beat Georgetown by double-digits twice during the regular season. Don't take the bait and bet on the underdog against a banged-up No. 1 seed here. The Wildcats are still far more talented. However, the Hoyas are 9-3 record ATS in their last 12 games.
Collin: Villanova played their first game without Gillespie and lost to a Providence team that is now on a train home thanks to DePaul. DEPAUL! NEVER GO FULL DEPAUL!
The pick: Ameer: Villanova -8.5: Collin: Hoya Saxa +8.5
No. 5 Seton Hall vs. No. 4 St. John’s: 3 p.m. ET, FS1
Point Spread: Seton Hall -1.5
Point Total: 151
St. John’s beat Seton Hall 81-71 in the final game of the regular season, and the Red Storm are in a great position to topple the Pirates for the second time this year. The season series is tied at 1-1, but the Pirates are having a problem scoring the basketball with 60 or fewer points in five of their last eight games.
St. John’s has covered in six of its last seven games. I like the Red Storm’s odds to win straight up, and that makes them very likely to cover the spread again.
The pick: Ameer: St. John’s +1.5
No. 10 Butler vs. No. 2 Creighton: 6 p.m. ET, FS1
Point Spread: Creighton -9.5
Point Total: 135.5
Butler pulled off an upset against Xavier in the first round, but the Bulldogs are about to get taken for a walk. Creighton is arguably the best team left in the Big East and thrashed Butler by 20 points in its regular-season finale. The Blue Jays did lose their first matchup with Butler this year, but the better team should show up in a game with serious NCAA Tournament implications.
This is just a matchup nightmare for the Bulldogs, who can’t score enough to keep up, and don’t defend the perimeter to stop all the threes that will rain down.
The pick: Both: Creighton -9.5
DePaul vs. No. 3 Connecticut: 9 p.m. ET, FS1
Point Spread: UConn -13
Point Total: 134.5
Hooray DePaul! You did it! Thursday!!
But UConn is the hottest team in college basketball right now, with four straight wins over better teams than you by double digits or more.
This is UConn’s first trip back to MSG for the Big East Tournament in almost a decade, and James Bouknight might have a Shabbaz Napier/Kemba Walker-type run. There is no fan base in college basketball more excited for their conference tournament this year than the Huskies, and they’re peaking. We’re all in on UConn Back this week.
If you pack your bags and put them on the team bus pregame Blue Demons, your charter will be waiting at LaGuardia by 1 a.m.
The pick: Collin: UConn -13
If you or someone you know has a gambling problem, crisis counseling and referral services can be accessed by calling 1-800-GAMBLER (1-800-426-2537) (IL). Gambling problem? Call 1-800-GAMBLER (NJ/WV/PA/MI), 1-800-9-WITH-IT (IN), 1-800-522-4700 (NH/CO), 1-800-BETS OFF (IA), 1-888-532-3500 (VA) or call/text TN REDLINE 1-800-889-9789 (TN). 21+ (18+ NH). CO/IL/IN/IA/NH/NJ/PA/TN/VA/WV/MI only. Eligibility restrictions apply. See draftkings.com/sportsbook for full terms and conditions.