Villanova guard Caleb Daniels (14) celebrates a defensive stop with Justin Moore (5) and Jeremiah Robinson-Earl (24) in the second half of a first round game against Winthrop in the NCAA men’s college basketball tournament at Farmers Coliseum in Indianapolis, Friday, March 19, 2021. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)
- The No. 1 seed Baylor Bears battle the No. 5 seed Villanova Wildcats in a South Region Sweet 16 NCAA Tournament tilt on Saturday, March 27th
- Baylor is trying to reach the program’s first Elite 8 since 2012, while ‘Nova is going for its third Regional Final appearance in the last five tourneys
- Which player props represent the best betting value? See the top available offerings below
With Collin Gillespie lost for the season prior to the Big East Tournament, Villanova has turned to the likes of Jeremiah Robinson-Earl and Justin Moore for scoring. Now, the Wildcats face their toughest challenge in the Bears and Baylor’s trio of studs as 7.5-point underdogs in Saturday’s South Regional semifinal of the 2021 NCAA Tournament.
Jay Wright’s club has knocked off No. 12 Winthrop and No. 13 North Texas to reach the Sweet 16, while Scott Drew’s crew beat No. 16 Hartford and No. 9 Wisconsin to get here.
Baylor’s Big Three of Jared Butler, Davion Mitchell and MaCio Teague have been the Bears’ primary scoring threats in their first two games – but Matthew Mayer had a team-high 17 points off the bench against the Badgers. Meantime, Robinson-Earl has led the way for the Wildcats in both of their Big Dance victories.
Villanova vs Baylor Player Props
|Player||Points||Rebounds||Assists||Three Pointers Made|
|Jermaine Samuels (Villanova)||13.5 (O +102 | U -128)||5.5 (O -142 | U +114)||2.5 (O -116 | U -108)||1.5 (O +140 | U -176)|
|Jeremiah Robinson-Earl (Villanova)||17.5 (O -110 | U -114)||8.5 (O -118 | U -106)||2.5 (O -118 | U -106)||1.5 (O +154 | U -196)|
|Caleb Daniels (Villanova)||9.5 (O -104 | U -120)||2.5 (O +125 | U -158)||1.5 (O +176 | U -225)||1.5 (O -112 | U -112)|
|Justin Moore (Villanova)||12.5 (O -130 | U +104)||3.5 (O -110 | U -114)||2.5 (O -168 | U +132)||1.5 (O -138 | U +110)|
|Mark Vital (Baylor)||5.5 (O -138 | U +110)||8.5 (O -106 | U -118)||Off||Off|
|Davion Mitchell (Baylor)||15.5 (O -104 | U -120)||2.5 (O -145 | U +114)||4.5 (O -118 | U -106)||2.5 (O +144 | U -182)|
|MaCio Teague (Baylor)||16.5 (O -130 | U +102)||4.5 (O +124 | U -158)||1.5 (O -118 | U -106)||2.5 (O +146 | U -188)|
|Jared Butler (Baylor)||16.5 (O -112 | U -112)||3.5 (O +102 | U -128)||4.5 (O +112 | U -140)||2.5 (O +120 | U -150)|
Odds taken on March 25th at FanDuel
Gillespie may have been the “heart and soul” of the Wildcats for the majority of the 2020-21 season (Wright said so after the senior’s season-ending MCL injury against Creighton March 3). But, as Wright hoped for, the rest of his roster has stepped up over the last three weeks in Gillespie’s absence. That group starts with the most decorated recruit on ‘Nova’s roster in Robinson-Earl.
Villanova running things through Jeremiah Robinson-Earl in the NCAA tournament — and it’s working. Dominated against Winthrop to the tune of 22 points, 11 boards and six assists, and just finished with 18 points, six rebounds and six assists against North Texas.
— Jeff Borzello (@jeffborzello) March 22, 2021
Over the last four games without Gillespie, Robinson-Earl has averaged 19.3 points, 9.0 rebounds and 3.8 assists, while knocking down 3-of-14 from three-point range total. So, when you look at Saturday’s props regarding his expected production, points and rebounds are too close to call. Assists and three-point shooting, however, or not.
The 6-foot-9 sophomore is officially listed as a forward, but Wright has used him at all five sports on the floor – including point guard. Going against Baylor’s guard-dominated roster Saturday, look for the offense to run through the hands of their most talented player.
- The pick: Jeremiah Robinson-Earl Over 2.5 assists (-118)
If you’re looking for additional Robinson-Earl wagering, the under for his shooting from distance is also a safe bet – though featuring significantly less value. He’s only had eight games (out of ‘Nova’s total of 24) making more than two three-pointers.
2021 Masters Odds Tracker
I’m fading Baylor plays in this spot simply because Mitchell, Teague and Butler are all so similar. Just look at all their props. There’s not much difference in the expected totals or odds in any of the four categories. That’s not the case for the Villanova guys. Enter Justin Moore.
In the first two rounds of the #NCAATournament, Justin Moore ’19 is averaging 15 points, 3.5 assists and 3.5 rebounds! Villanova will take on top seed Baylor in next weekend’s Sweet 16. pic.twitter.com/ubj7YetVrX
— DeMathaHighSchool (@DeMathaCatholic) March 22, 2021
Like fellow sophomore Robinson-Earl, the 6-foot-4 Washington DC product has answered the call of late – especially in the two tourney games. Sure, Baylor is a significant step from Winthrop and North Texas. But I fully expect Moore to match or even exceed that 15-point plateau once again in the Sweet 16 matchup with the Bears.
- The pick: Justin Moore Over 12.5 points (-130)
Another prop that should pay off in this spot is Moore from distance. He’s converted two three-point shots in three straight games. While only a 32% shooter from beyond the arc over the whole season, Moore is hitting shots from three-point range at a slightly improved 35% clip. In what should be a fairly high-scoring affair, Moore will get the volume he needs to easily surpass the three-point prop.
While Nova may not upset Baylor, Robinson-Earl and Moore will put up solid offensive numbers and prove to be safer plays than the Bears’ stable of studs.
Blair Johnson is a veteran journalist and seasoned sports content creator. He has been writing and producing content as long as he can remember, with such familiar names as CNN, NFL Media and Yahoo. Blair currently lives and works in the greater Los Angeles area.