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Villanova Odds-On Favorite To Win Big East Tournament

Villanova has been the powerhouse of the Big East over the past few seasons and little has changed this year. The Wildcats cruised to the regular season conference crown and have their eyes set on defending their national championship. First, Villanova needs to get through the Big East conference tournament, which oddsmakers don’t see as a problem.

’Nova is a -130 favorite to win the Big East tourney, the only program in any major conference to be an odds-on fave. It’s easy to see why, as the team looks a lot like last season’s squad that lost the Big East tournament by just two points. Josh Hart is one of the most versatile players in the nation, Jalen Brunson is shooting the lights out and sophomore Mikal Bridges has made huge leaps in his second season.

Next closest to Villanova is Butler, a team that should not be overlooked. The Bulldogs have handed the Wildcats two of their three losses this season while holding them to just 63.5 ppg and a 40.6 shooting percentage. Experienced forwards Kelan Martin and Andrew Chrabascz anchor the team but it’s the emergence of freshman Kamar Baldwin at the point that has helped this team truly mesh.

One team to avoid like the plague is Creighton. The Bluejays were one of the best teams in the nation through the first half of the year thanks to their backcourt play. However, Marcus Foster is out for the year due to a knee injury and Maurice Watson has been suspended after he was charged with first-degree sexual assault. Justin Patton and Khyri Thomas offer some hope, but this team is falling apart.

2016-17 NCAAB Big East Conference Championship Odds

Odds as of March 6 at BetOnline

  • Villanova -130
  • Butler +450
  • Creighton +550
  • Marquette +900
  • Xavier +1200
  • Seton Hall +2000
  • Providence +2500
  • Georgetown +2800
  • St. John's +6600
  • DePaul +20000

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Villanova cut down the nets in Houston last season and the team looks primed to take a run at back-to-back tournament victories. With a stellar season last year, ’Nova enters the 2016-17 college basketball season as heavy -150 favorites to win the Big East conference crown.

Villanova returns the bulk of the lineup that went 16-2 within the Big East last season, with only Ryan Arcidiacono and Daniel Ochefu no longer with the squad. Josh Hart is a preseason All-American and is easily the front-runner for player of the year in the conference. Expect a big uptake from Jalen Brunson, who generally deferred to veterans last season but shot 45 percent from the floor.

The obvious choice to potentially usurp Villanova is Xavier (+300). The duo of Edmond Sumner and Trevon Bluiett may be the best in the conference, as the two averaged a combined 25.1 points and 9.5 rebounds per game last season. The player to watch, though, could be RaShid Gaston, a power forward who transferred from Norfolk State. The senior averaged 15.5 points and 9.6 rebounds for the Spartans last season, but he could get hacked a bunch as he has shot just 52.5 percent from the stripe in his collegiate career.

An intriguing team to look out for is the Creighton Blue Jays (+1200). The veteran backcourt of Mo Watson Jr. and Marcus Foster may prove to be the best in the Big East this season. Then you pair those two with a huge paint presence like Cole Huff, and Creighton may be ready to surprise a few onlookers this season.

2016-17 NCAAB Big East Conference Championship Odds

Odds as of November 8 at BetOnline

  • Villanova -150
  • Xavier +300
  • Butler +900
  • Creighton +1200
  • Georgetown +1600
  • Seton Hall +1800
  • Marquette +2000
  • Providence +5000
  • St. John’s +10000
  • DePaul +25000

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