The Butler Bulldogs face an appetizing opportunity on Sunday afternoon. Butler hosts the No. 8 Providence Friars in a high-profile Big East clash. Providence won the first matchup, holding serve at home, but Butler aims to return the favor and seeks to improve on a 13-13 record. Providence is 21-3 overall with the Big East lead as the calendar shifts to late February.
Caesars Sportsbook lists the Friars as three-point road favorites, and tip-off is scheduled for 1 p.m. ET. The total number of points Vegas thinks will be scored, or the Over-Under, is 129 in the latest Providence vs. Butler odds. Before you make any college basketball predictions with the Providence vs. Butler match-up, see what SportsLine's advanced computer model has to say.
The SportsLine Projection Model simulates every Division I college basketball game 10,000 times. Over the past five-plus years, the proprietary computer model has generated an impressive profit of almost $2,000 for $100 players on its top-rated college basketball picks against the spread. Anyone who has followed it has seen huge returns.
- Providence vs. Butler spread: Providence -3
- Providence vs. Butler over-under: 129 points
- Providence vs. Butler money line: Providence -160, Butler +140
- Providence: Friars are 7-6 against the spread in Big East games
- Butler: Bulldogs are 8-7 against the spread in Big East games
Why Providence can cover
Providence has clear strengths, as evidenced by its 21-3 overall record and solo lead in the Big East. With that said, the Friars should also benefit from Butler's weaknesses in this matchup. On offense, Butler is shooting just 30.8 percent from three-point range, ranking outside the top 300 nationally. The Bulldogs also have 13.9 percent of their shots blocked, No. 352 in the country, and Butler is No. 238 in the nation in free throw creation rate.
On the other side, Butler is allowing opponents to shoot 51.6 percent on two-point shots, a strongly below-average figure. The Bulldogs also struggle to create havoc, including a 7.4 percent steal rate and a 6.7 percent block rate, with both ranking near the bottom of the nationwide pecking order. Providence is in the top 10 in the nation in free throw creation rate on offense, with top-tier marks in shooting efficiency allowed, free throw prevention, and defensive rebound rate.
Why Butler can cover
Butler is in the top five of the Big East in turnover prevention, including the conference's best mark in steal rate allowed. Providence is outside the top 275 in the country in forcing turnovers on defense, creating a giveaway on only 16.6 percent of possessions. That includes a very low steal rate of 7.8 percent, and Butler can boost its offensive efficiency by simply avoiding mistakes.
On defense, the Bulldogs are above-average nationally, with a strong defensive rebound rate of 73.0 percent. Butler is No. 2 in the Big East in three-point shooting allowed at 30.5 percent, and above-average, both nationally and within the Big East, in preventing free throw attempts for opponents.
How to make Providence vs. Butler picks
SportsLine's model is leaning over on the total, with 11 players projected to score at least eight points. The model also says one side of the spread hits in almost 60 percent of simulations. You can only see who to back here.
So who wins Butler vs. Providence? And which side of the spread hits in almost 60 percent of simulations? Visit SportsLine now to find out which side of the Butler vs. Providence spread you need to jump on Sunday, all from the model that has crushed its college basketball picks, and find out.