Michigan vs. Villanova NCAA Tournament Sweet 16 Predictions and Pick

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Caleb Daniels #14 of the Villanova Wildcats. Kirk Irwin/Getty Images/AFP

The Michigan Wolverines went from potentially not making the NCAA Tournament to being a Sweet 16 team and a contender for the NCAAB Championship. It’s been an up and down year for the Wolverines throughout the season, but the talent on this Wolverines team was never questioned. Michigan has the skillset to compete with anyone in the nation.

The Michigan Wolverines, an 11-seed, will look to get to the Elite Eight with a matchup against the Villanova Wildcats in the Sweet 16. Can Michigan continue to shock the world? Keep reading as we’ll break down the college basketball odds and share two winning picks!

Michigan Wolverines vs. Villanova Wildcats

Thursday, March 24, 2022 – 07:29 EDT at AT&T Center

On Thursday, Michigan will continue to get dealt a tough hand. The Wolverines will take on the Villanova Wildcats, who already won the Big East Tournament this season. Michigan is shooting a 52.6% effective field goal percentage while only turning the ball over 17.4% of the time.

On the glass, the Wolverines have also earned 30.9% offensive rebounds and this team continues to dominate in the interior. Michigan is shooting a 53.3% field goal percentage inside the arc and still hit nearly 34% of shots from deep this season.

On the other hand, Villanova has been just as good on the defensive side, holding teams to 30.6% from deep and 48.6% from inside the arc. If Michigan is going to have some success in this game, the Wolverines will need to score inside the arc and continue to win offensive rebounds.

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The Wildcats are giving up 28.3% offensive rebounds per game and aren’t nearly as good defending inside as they are defending the perimeter. Offensively, however, the Villanova Wildcats are one of the best in the nation.

The Wildcats are shooting 82.6% from the foul line this season, which is not just a top number in college basketball this year, it’s the best number in college basketball ever. Villanova is also knocking down 36.2% of three-point shots and continues to have success inside, scoring at a rate of 50.5%.

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The Wildcats are also solid on the offensive glass, however, Michigan is the better defensive rebounding team, holding opponents to 23.9% offensive rebounds. But the one issue with Michigan is that the Wolverines struggle to force turnovers, earning just 14.8% of them per game.

On the other hand, Villanova is limiting turnovers to 15.6% so, despite Villanova being unable to earn second chances on the glass, there’s a good chance Villanova will get a chance pretty much every possession down the floor.

Prediction

This game is going to be much closer than some might think. Michigan might be an 11-seed, but the talent level on this team is much greater than an 11 seed. After all, Michigan was in the pre-rankings at five or better in some spots to start the season.

But even if this game comes down to the wire, like we’ve seen with so many games this year, the favorite can still cover a two-possession game with some late fouling and other situational scenarios.

For my NCAAB picks, I like Villanova to win this game and believe the Wildcats can also have plenty of success inside the arc. On the other hand, I’m not counting Michigan out and believe this will be a game that will finish down to the wire with Michigan holding on with clutch scoring inside the arc against Villanova.

Plus, I also believe Collin Gillespie will score at a high rate after he scored 20 on just 2-of-9 from deep against Ohio State.

Final Score: 72-65 | Villanova Wins

NCAAB Pick: Villanova -4.5 (-110) with BetOnline (visit our BetOnline Review)

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Villanova -4.5 (-110)
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*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.