The spread seems a bit low in the March 1st Xavier at Georgetown betting pick. The Musketeers opened at a PK but have since been bet to -1.5 favorites. That still doesn’t seem like enough points at first glance though as Xavier is fighting to get their way into the NCAA tournament at 18-10.
Travis Steele’s team is projected to be in the tournament, but are in a must-win Sunday with Providence and Butler coming up to close out the season. The Hoyas seem to be running out of steam late in the year with 3-straight losses, including by 21 at Marquette on Wednesday.
Xavier Showing Some Improvement as of Late
The Musketeers went 5-2 in February including 6-1 ATS. That includes a 74-62 in at Seton Hall as a +8.5 underdog. Xavier also won conference road games at DePaul (XAV +1) and St. John’s (-1.5) and covering the +5.5 number at Butler. It’s a tough away contest in the March 1st Xavier at Georgetown betting pick, but the Musketeers have shown nice road play lately.
The improvements for Xavier have come in defensive efficiency as they’ve climbed from 72nd to 49th in the country in the last 5 weeks. The 12-25 three point shooting vs. DePaul on Tuesday is also optimistic considering Xavier was 9-36 in the two games prior and shoots just 31% from beyond the arc on the year (285th).
What’s likely going to be the key on Sunday though is the Musketeers’ depth. Naji Marshall is a candidate for Julius Erving Small Forward of the Year Award. Tyrique Jones had a double-double in 9 straight games before posting 9 points/5 rebounds vs. DePaul. Quentin Goodin joins Marshall and Jones as a 1,000 point scorer for the program and Paul Scruggs is 55 points short of joining him. This is a team that can make some noise in March – if they get there.
How Does Georgetown Pull This One Off?
It’s just hard to see Georgetown sticking in this one – which raises a red flag as the spread is just XAV -1.5. It’s not the Hoyas’ fault altogether, they’ve been behooved by injuries to their top 2 scorers in Mac McClung (15.7) and Omer Yurtseven (15.8). Both are questionable for Sunday, but without them in the lineup last game Georgetown lost by 21.
Georgetown lost 57-66 at Xavier on January 22nd and that was with 19 points from McClung. He was the only Hoya player in double figures whereas Xavier had four players with 10+ including 18 apiece from Marshall and Kyky Tandy while Jones grabbed 13 boards.
March 1st Xavier at Georgetown Betting Prediction
This wouldn’t be a bad spot for a contrarian play on Georgetown +1.5 considering the line definitely seems like a trap. The Hoyas are possibly without 31 ppg from McClung and Yurtseven up against a veteran laden team that has three (nearly four ) 1,000 point scorers. Xavier needs the win to make the tourney and has two tough games to close out the season. The Musketeers have also played well on the road as of late.
Contrarian plays are nice – but they also make you kick yourself when you should’ve just taken the head and shoulders above better team.
Pick: Xavier Musketeers -1.5