It will be a battle between Big East opponents when the Providence Friars (17-12, 10-6 Big East) welcome the Xavier Musketeers (19-10, 8-8 Big East) to the Dunkin’ Donuts Center. The game starts at 6:30 p.m. ET on Wednesday, March 4, 2020.
Xavier Musketeers at Providence Friars Free Prediction
The Musketeers come in on a high note after narrowly defeating the Georgetown Hoyas in their last matchup, 66-63. Xavier out-rebounded Georgetown. The Musketeers had 16 offensive rebounds and 41 total rebounds, while the Hoyas had 10 and 30, respectively. Xavier rallied around Tyrique Jones, who contributed 18 points and 13 rebounds.
The last time the Friars took the floor, they defeated the No. 12 Villanova Wildcats, 58-54. One of Providence’s biggest advantages was getting to the charity stripe. They had 25 free throw attempts, while Villanova had 18. Luwane Pipkins was the top scorer from either team with 27 points on 7-for-13 shooting from the field.
The offense of Providence (207th in the nation with an offensive efficiency of 101.3) will square off against the stingy defense of Xavier (59th in the nation with a defensive efficiency of 95.2). The Musketeers should have the edge on that side of the ball.
This is the second game of the season between these two squads. Jones put up 14 points and 18 rebounds in the first matchup, in which the Musketeers beat the Friars 64-58. The Musketeers had a better free throw rate (0.200 vs. 0.105) and had a much better turnover percentage (11.4 vs. 17.6).
Xavier Musketeers vs. Providence Friars Free Pick
College Basketball Pick: ATS Winner – Xavier, O/U – Over
Xavier averages 39.4 rebounds per game, which ranks 26th in the nation. Providence ranks 178th in rebounds allowed per game (35.7).
The Friars average 8.2 steals per game, which ranks 26th in the country. The Musketeers rank 170th in steals allowed per game (7.0).
Xavier averages 3.8 blocks per game, which ranks 73rd in the nation. Providence ranks 123rd in blocks allowed per game (3.4).
The Friars rank 57th in assists per game (14.6) while the Musketeers rank 103rd in assists allowed per game (12.1).
Providence ranks 147th in three pointers attempted per game (21.8) while Xavier ranks 165th in three pointers allowed per game (21.9).
The Musketeers’ average margin of victory in their last five games has been 0.6, down from 3.8 for the season.
During their last five games, the Friars have scored an average of 71.6 points per game (1.2 above their season average) and allowed an average of 68.0 points per game (1.7 above their season average).