Villanova vs. Xavier odds, line: College basketball picks, best predictions from model on 16-8 roll

Seventeenth-ranked Villanova has hit a rough patch in its schedule and now finds itself in second place in the Big East standings. The Wildcats (20-7, 11-3) need a win at Xavier (14-13, 6-8) on Sunday to preserve their spot in the 2019 NCAA Tournament bracket. Villanova is just 5-5 on the road and can't afford another setback if it has any hope of finishing ahead of Marquette, while Xavier has won 10 of 15 at home and is tied for sixth in the Big East with Butler. Sunday's tip-off from the Cintas Center is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. ET. The Wildcats are six-point favorites in the latest Villanova vs. Xavier odds, while the over-under for total points scored is 139. You'll want to see what the SportsLine Projection Model is saying about the game before laying any Villanova vs. Xavier picks of your own.

This model, which simulates every game 10,000 times, has raked in the winnings for those following its picks. Over the past two years, the SportsLine Projection Model has returned over $5,200 to $100 players on its top-rated college basketball picks. It also entered Week 16 of the 2018-19 college basketball season on a blistering 16-8 run on top-rated college basketball side picks either against the spread or on the money line. Anyone who has followed it is way up. 

Now the model has dialed in on Villanova vs. Xavier. We can tell you it is leaning over, and it has a strong against-the-spread pick that cashes in well over 50 percent of simulations. That one is only available at SportsLine.

The model knows Villanova has dominated its series with Xavier and is 27-5 all-time against the Musketeers. Since Xavier joined the Big East in 2013-14, the Wildcats have won 11 of 12, with the only loss coming at Xavier in 2015-16. Villanova, which won the NCAA championship last season and three years ago, has taken down the Big East Conference tournament three of the last four seasons, including the last two. The only school still in the league that has won more is Georgetown (seven). 

Under coach Jay Wright, the Wildcats have posted winning records in 16 of his 18 seasons. Guard Phil Booth (18.6 points per game) continues to carry Villanova and scored a game-high 26 points in Wednesday's loss at Georgetown. Forward Eric Paschall (17.3 points per game) has also been hot. He had 25 against Providence on Feb. 13 and has equaled or surpassed his average in seven of the last 10 games.

But just because the Wildcats have had a lot of recent success does not guarantee it will win or even cover the Villanova vs. Xavier spread. 

Villanova has lost its last three road games, while Xavier is aiming to keep its streak of winning seasons intact. The Musketeers have made the NCAA Tournament in 16 of the last 18 seasons and have posted winning records in 22 consecutive seasons. The last losing season was in 1995-96.

Sophomore forward Naji Marshall (14.3 ppg) has been on fire, equaling or surpassing his average in eight of 10 games, including 28 points at Seton Hall Wednesday. Sophomore guard Paul Scruggs (12 ppg) has played well in big games, including 21 points in a Jan. 26 loss to Marquette. Junior forward Tyrique Jones (11.5 ppg) has also played well against the Big East elite, scoring 21 points vs. Marquette and 21 against Villanova in the first meeting.

So who wins Xavier vs. Villanova? And which side of the spread can you bank on in well over 50 percent of simulations? Visit SportsLine now to see which side of the Xavier vs. Villanova spread to jump on, all from the advanced model that is up more than $5,200 on its college basketball picks the past two years, and find out.

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