Arizona (32-4) vs. Xavier (23-13) Prediction & Game Preview
NCAA Tournament: Arizona vs. Xavier fearless prediction and game preview.
Date: Thursday, March 23
Game Time: 10:09 pm ET
Venue: SAP Center at San Jose, San Jose, CA
What’s The Deal With Arizona?
Don’t get all caught up in how much of a fight it took Arizona to get by a loaded and dangerous Saint Mary’s team. The Wildcats turned it on in the second half to win 69-60, but it took a few big shots to get out alive. It was stall ball time against one of the nation’s better defenses, and now Arizona should be ready to get the O rolling again.
The Wildcats don’t force a ton of mistakes, and they don’t take a lot of threes, but other than that. they attack, can score inside and out, and are great at hitting the midrange shots and get to the rim. They’ve been through the Pac-12 wars – they’re not going to melt under the pressure.
What’s The Deal With Xavier?
Xavier pulled off a shocker in the second round, destroying Florida State 91-66 in a game that was never, ever close. The Musketeers were lights out from the field, hitting 56% of their shots including 11-of-17 from three, putting the game away almost instantly.
They normally don’t crank up the O to that sort of level, and they’re just okay from three, but they’ve turned up their intensity several notches in he first two games in stunning blowouts, getting by Maryland 76-65 in the first round. Considering how bad the Musketeers were a few weeks ago – losing six straight – they’ve found the right chemistry again.
What’s Going To Happen
At some point, Xavier is going to wake up and be mediocre again. Yeah, it’s great on the boards, and yeah, it knows how to play in the tournament, but at some point this is going to stop with a thud. Arizona – with time to prepare – is about to rip through a defense that allowed teams to hit 45% of their shots this year.
Fearless Prediction & Line
Arizona 78, Xavier 68
Line: Arizona -7, 0/u: 144
ATS Confidence: 4
5: Leave Vegas richer in body, mind & spirit
1: Leave the sportsbook, get tickets for Menopause The Musical or Puppetry of the Penis