Villanova is 44-24 all time in the rivalry and have won the last three meetings including last year’s 11 point victory at the Pavillion. The last time that SJU beat Villanova was on February 4, 2008 when SJU lead by as many as 31 and defeated the Wildcats 77-55. Villanova enters the game coming off a 25 point victory over the Boston University Terriers. Nova is off a rocky start with losses to #10 Missouri, Big 5 rival Temple, A10 member St. Louis, and Santa Clara. Villanova is lead by junior Philadelphia guard (Roman Catholic) Maalik Wayns (17.8 PPG) and junior center Mouphtaou Yarou (15.0 PPG).
Saint Joseph’s enters the game coming off two straight wins including a nine point victory over #17 Creighton last Saturday at Hagan Arena. After the victory, SJU received five votes in the ESPN/USA Today Poll for the first time since 2007-2008. SJU enters as one of the youngest teams in the country with no seniors and only two juniors. The team is lead by junior guard Carl “Tay” Jones (19.4 PPG) and sophomore guard Langston Galloway (15.6 PPG) along with C.J. Aiken, who leads the nation in blocks with 4.8 per game.
As for the game, I think the two teams matchup well. Both teams always bring their best when it comes to the Holy War which makes it so hard to predict. With the strong defense of Saint Joseph’s and a strong post presence for the first time since Ahmad Nivins in Halil Kanacevic, I think Saint Joseph’s is able to compete for a full forty minutes. Villanova is not at the top of their game coming into the game and the rowdy fans of Hagan Arena are certainly going to play a factor in the outcome. If SJU ca
Prediction: Saint Joseph’s- 63 Villanova- 57