If you haven’t seen the North Texas Mean Green play, there might be plenty of time to go to the refrigerator, so to speak. That is because they operate VERY slowly. Only a handful of teams use the shot clock more than they do, and of course, that is something they have been able to use to their advantage.
Well, that worked for them as they played their first NCAA Tournament game, and as a result they came out of it as the victor against a nationally-ranked side.
This may not bode well for the Villanova Wildcats, who they’ll oppose on Sunday night in the Round of 32. This game begins at 8:45 PM ET at Banker Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis.
BetOnline has LIVE BETTING for this game, as it does for all events. And if you are looking for props, you have come to the right place, as all you have to do is click the red “plus” sign to the right of the game listing (+) and you can indulge all you want.
NCAA Tournament @ Indianapolis
NORTH TEXAS MEAN GREEN vs.VILLANOVA WILDCATS, 8:45 PM ET (TNT)
March Madness Basketball Odds: Villanova -5.5 (-112) / Total 126
Grant McCasland’s North Texas team got through the Conference USA tournament by beating Western Kentucky, which had some impressive talent. But these guys are oriented very much toward a philosophy that they will have a better chance by limiting the number of possessions. So they use more than 19 seconds of the shot clock on a per-possession basis.
And they succeeded against a Purdue team that also plays somewhat deliberately. The game was tied at 61 going into overtime, but UNT was much the best in the extra session, outscoring the Boilermakers 17-8 to cross the finish line first. They held Purdue to 9-of-30 from three-point range.
That was grace under pressure, and they’ll have to do that again. Villanova has no problem operating carefully; in fact, the Wildcats average 18.5 seconds per possession. They do not give much away, as a rule, ranking second in the country in turnover percentage.
The speed bump for Jay Wright’s team is this – they lost point guard Collin Gillespie, the Big East co-player of the year, to an MCL injury, and that left a big void. They came out of that okay against Winthrop,which didn’t bring enough poise to take advantage of the situation, shooting just 36%.
Generally the ‘Cats are not considered lockdown defenders, so we don’t know if we could count on such a thing happening again versus UNT, which is 37.5% from long range.
A few things worry us a little about the Mean Green. One is that Villanova was able to get by against one-loss Winthrop by putting the ball in the hands of Jeremiah Robinson-Earl, who shared in that Big East co-POY honor and showed it, with 22 points, eleven rebounds and six assists. Also, guard Justin Moore, who had a high ankle sprain, scored 15 points in 37 minutes.
Also, one of the staples of what North Texas does on defense is forcing turnovers. Even without Gillespie, the Wildcats can mitigate that effect to some degree.
And listen – Jay Wright knows this drill, as he has won two national championships.
But North Texas showed us a lot, in the process of giving Purdue a second chance and beating them back anyway. They are a veteran team, starting four seniors and a junior. And they are not in the deep water here, as they have played against really tough teams like Arkansas, Mississippi State, Loyola-Chicago and West Virginia.
They may be worth the investment. But consider as well that we have gotten a clue as to how they play against that level of opposition, as they averaged 54 points against them.
So while there might be some value with the dog, the UNDER is worth a whack as well.
BetOnline can accommodate you extremely well for the rest of March Madness, and that involves giving you plenty of propositions to choose from for every game…….. And don’t forget that Odds Booster offers you incredible payouts on pre-selected parlays every day of the week……… They have virtually every payment method available- that includes cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, so it is easier than ever to open an account!