The No. 10 Louisville Cardinals (24-6, 15-4) travel east to take on the No. 22 Virginia Cavaliers (22-7, 14-5) in an Atlantic Coast Conference matchup on Saturday. Tip-off is 4 pm EST inside John Paul Jones Arena in Charlottesville, Va.
The tilt is the final game of the regular season for both teams. A win Saturday would give the Cardinals at least a share of their first conference regular-season title since joining the ACC in 2014. The host will try to conclude an eight-game winning streak to close out the regular season.
Louisville took down the Cavaliers by seven (80-73) at home earlier this season. Virginia is a one-point favorite in the conference showdown.
What to Know – Louisville
Louisville has tripped up down the stretch, going 3-3 after a 10-game winning streak. The Cardinals have had nearly a week off since a 16-point drubbing of Virginia Tech on Sunday, March 1st. Louisville brings a respectable 6-4 road record into this weekend’s contest.
Sophomore forward Jordan Nwora (18.0 ppg) continues to pace the Louisville offense. Nwora led the Cardinals against the Cavaliers the last time these teams met, pouring in 22 points and grabbing 12 rebounds in the victory.
Behind Nwora, the Cardinals feature a balanced attack with five players averaging over 8.7 points or more per contest. Redshirt senior Dwayne Sutton has averaged 11.2 points and 8.0 rebounds per game over the last six games.
The Cardinals are scoring at an average of 74.7 points per game and are second in the league allowing 63.9 per game. Louisville ranks 18th in the nation in 3-point field goal percentage (37.6%), making nine or more treys in 17 games this season.
The visitors also hold their own on the defensive end, allowing teams to shoot just 38.6% from the field. That percentage is 13th in the nation.
What to Know – Virginia
The Cavaliers are one of the hottest teams in college basketball, winning 10 of their last 11 contests. Virginia has been effective at home this season, sporting a 13-3 record in Charlottesville.
Virginia is 7-1 all-time against Louisville at home, including a perfect 5-0 inside JPJ Arena. Tony Bennett is 10-2 against the Cardinals as head coach of the Cavaliers.
Virginia possesses the league’s lowest-scoring offense and ranks 348th nationally, averaging 57.0 points per game. Senior redshirt forward Mamadi Diakite (13.6 ppg) is the Cavaliers’ leading scorer and will be playing in his final home game in a Virginia uniform.
Sophomore guard Kihei Clark (10.6 ppg) and senior guard Braxton Key (10.0 ppg) also average in double figures for the host.
What Virginia lacks in offense, it makes up for on the defensive side of the ball with the nation’s top scoring defense. The Cavaliers allow just 52.3 points per game and hold opponents to 36.9% shooting from the field. Virginia is
The Pick is In
This one is a toss-up just as the line reflects. The last time these two teams met, the Cavaliers tallied a season-high 73 points but also allowed a season-high 80 in the loss. Four of Louisville’s five losses have come on the road this year. Give us the home team in the toss-up. We like the Virginia Cavaliers -1.