Villanova used a balanced effort as the No. 2 Wildcats beat No. 24 Xavier, 73-57, for a Big East road win on Saturday afternoon.
The win is head coach Jay Wright’s 500th as he saw the Big East leaders play a complete game.
Point guard Jalen Brunson had a solid game with 17 points, seven assists and only two turnovers as Villanova shot 51 percent (27-for-52) from the field and only committed six turnovers. Donte DiVincenzo also continued his strong recent stretch of play by finishing with 17 points.
Kris Jenkins (12 points), Josh Hart (11 points) and Mikal Bridges (10 points) also finished with double-figures for Villanova.
When Villanova’s offense is playing like this they are going to be one of the toughest teams in the country to stop. Brunson and DiVincenzo being the leaders in this one is particularly noteworthy since those are two of the players Villanova will rely on in March compared to last season. We know that Josh Hart is a player of the year candidate and Jenkins and Bridges are also steady but adding more perimeter firepower from those guys makes Villanova really tough to defend.
With DiVincenzo scoring like this there are not many weak links in the Villanova lineup.
Xavier (18-7, 8-4) looked lifeless by the end of this one as Trevon Bluiett (0 points) had an ankle injury and the team’s offense struggled. Rashid Gaston had a solid game with 23 points and 10 rebounds while J.P. Macura added 17 points and seven rebounds.
The Musketeers outrebounded Villanova 42-27 but the only shot 35 percent from the field and 28 percent from three-point range.
This loss snaps a four-game winning streak for Xavier as they begin a three-game road trip in which they need to get healthier and figure out the offensive issues.
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (AP) — Police say someone stole thousands of dollars in electronics from the University of North Carolina men’s basketball team locker room and office while they were away for the ACC tournament.
UNC-Chapel Hill campus police said on Twitter that the break-in happened at the Dean Smith Center on March 9, and they released images of a man they believe may have been involved.
A police report says the thief managed to get into the team locker room and basketball office without forced entry, according to The Herald-Sun.
The report says the thief stole a PlayStation 4, Xbox One and clothing worth $2,900 that belonged to the athletic department. Police say the thief also stole a laptop worth $1,200 and a financial document worth about $3,000 belonging to one of the players.
The No. 1 overall seed on the men’s side of the NCAA tournament made history on Friday night.
They because the first No. 1 seed to lose to a No. 16 seed in the first round of the tournament, as Virginia lost to UMBC, if you were still unaware.
Over on the women’s side, the bracket is nowhere near as broken, because UConn’s women made history, too. They set NCAA tournament records for … well, almost everything it seems like.
The Huskies were up 55-19 at the end of the first quarter of their first round game against St. Francis (PA). Those 55 points are an NCAA tournament record. They held a 94-31 lead at the half, another NCAA tournament record, and held on to win 140-52.
The 140 points that Geno Auriemma’s team scored was an NCAA tournament record. The 88 points that they won by was one point short of an NCAA tournament record 89 points that was set by Baylor in a win over Texas Southern last season.
Oh, and the Huskies set the record for more assists in an NCAA tournament game — 38 — for good measure.
All in all, I think it’s safe to say that the fans in Storrs had a better weekend than the fans in Charlottesville. Hopefully, that will allow them to forget the fact that the men’s basketball program has become a laughing stock.
Never before in the history of the NCAA tournament as a No. 16 seed upset a No. 1 seed.
That was until Friday night, when UMBC sent the No. 1 overall seed Virginia packing.
And if you thought no one had picked that upset, you were wrong.
Let’s start with the Maryland Governor, who was clearly a homer in picking UMBC to not only beat Virginia, but to win a national title:
Never say never, but … that’s never going to happen bud.
But how about this: My son, who is two years old and based his picks on his hard and fast rule of “all the doggies”, called this upset!
He also called Penn over Kansas, Fullerton over Purdue and Butler winning a national title, but whatever.
That bracket is actually pretty good!
You have to give Virginia some credit.
After losing to No. 16 seed UMBC in the first round of the NCAA tournament, the players on that roster faced the music. They went up to the dais and answered question from reporters on national television.
There is no way they enjoyed that.
And you can tell because Ty Jerome had absolutely no interest in answering dumb questions from reporters:
He was not amused.
Here is the full TV schedule, with spreads, over-unders and betting lines, for every game for the first four days of the NCAA tournament.
(Lines are updated for Saturday morning.)
Pittsburgh: Kevin Harlan, Reggie Miller, Dan Bonner and Dana Jacobson
- 12:10 p.m.: No. 1 Villanova (-11.5) vs. No. 9 Alabama, CBS (149.5)
- 2:40 p.m.: No. 2 Duke (-9.5) vs. No. 7 Rhode Island, CBS (149)
Boise: Brian Anderson, Chris Webber and Lisa Byington
- 5:15 p.m.: No. 5 Kentucky (-5.5) vs. No. 13 Buffalo, CBS (155)
- 7:45 p.m.: No. 4 Gonzaga (-4) vs. No. 5 Ohio State, CBS (141.5)
Dallas: Spero Dedes, Steve Smith, Len Elmore and Ros Gold-Onwude
- 6:10 p.m.: No. 3 Tennessee (-5) vs. No. 11 Loyola (Chicago), TNT (131.5)
- 8:40: No. 3 Texas Tech (-1.5) vs. No. 6 Florida, TNT (133.5)
Wichita: Brad Nessler, Steve Lavin and Evan Washburn
- 7:10 p.m.: No. 1 Kansas (-4.5) vs. No. 8 Seton Hall, TBS (154.5)
- 9:40 p.m.: No. 3 Michigan (-3) vs. No. 6 Houston, TBS (135)