Men's College Basketball
Alabama vs Villanova
When: 12:10 PM ET, Saturday, March 17, 2018
Where: PPG Paints Arena, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Villanova looked every bit the part of a No. 1 seed in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. The Wildcats aim for an encore performance Saturday when they take on ninth-seeded Alabama in the Round of 32 at Pittsburgh.

The Wildcats topped No. 16 Radford 87-61 on Thursday as the team shot nearly 60 percent from the floor and over 51 percent from 3-point range. That sets up a key game for Villanova, which has lost in the second round in four of its last seven NCAA Tournament appearances, including last year to Wisconsin. “When you are consistently a high seed, that means two things,” coach Jay Wright told reporters. “It means your players have consistently played well for quite a while. It also means the expectations you face are always going to be very high." Alabama snuck past No. 8 seed Virginia Tech in its NCAA opener as talented freshman Collin Sexton registered 21 of his 24 points in the second half.

TV: 12:10 p.m. ET, CBS

ABOUT ALABAMA (20-15): The Crimson Tide overcame 17 turnovers and nine missed foul shots while shooting 60 percent from the floor in Thursday's 86-83 triumph over the Hokies. John Petty helped Sexton by draining 6-of-8 from 3-point range - he's 11-of-17 from behind the arc over the last two games - while Donta Hall was 5-of-5 from the field in Thursday's win. Sexton averages 19.2 points overall and has surpassed that average in five straight games with all of those performances coming against teams that are seeded eighth or better in the NCAA Tournament.

ABOUT VILLANOVA (31-4): Eight players for Villanova scored between seven and 16 points in the opening-round win, led by Jalen Brunson (16), who shot 7-of-9 from the floor and is shooting 60.3 percent over the last five outings. Mikal Bridges added 13 points and has made at least three 3-pointers in nine straight games, shooting at least 50 percent from beyond the arc in seven of those contests. One minor concern for the Wildcats is the scoring production from versatile guard Donte DiVincenzo, who had seven points against Radford and is 9-of-28 from the field over the last four outings.


1. Alabama has not reached the Sweet 16 since advancing all the way to the Elite Eight in 2004.

2. Villanova's top seven scorers all have drained at least 26 from 3-point range.

3. The winner of this game will face either No. 5 West Virginia or No. 13 Marshall.

PREDICTION: Villanova 70, Alabama 66
Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W/L Strk Home Away Neutral Day Night Conf
Alabama 20-15 W1 12-4 2-8 6-3 7-7 13-8 10-11
Villanova 31-4 W6 12-1 9-3 10-0 11-2 20-2 17-4
Last Meeting
Alabama Villanova
Date Away Home Pts Reb FG% Pts Reb FG%
11/16/12 VILL 55 ALA 77 77 31 56.8 55 25 31.9
Player Stats
Previous Matchup
Points Player Total FG% FTM
Alabama T. Releford 25 80.0 4
Villanova J. Pinkston 17 66.7 8
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
Alabama N. Jacobs 5 2 3
Villanova J. Bell 6 1 5
Assists Player  
Alabama T. Lacey 4
Villanova R. Arcidiacono 2
Points Player Total FG% FTM
Alabama C. Sexton 615 44.6 193
Villanova J. Brunson 675 53.6 111
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
Alabama D. Hall 222 74 148
Villanova O. Spellman 275 78 197
Assists Player  
Alabama C. Sexton 116
Villanova J. Brunson 164
Quickchart Matchup
blue bar Alabama Off vs  red bar Villanova Defense
blue bar 72.7 Points For
red bar 70.6 Points Against
blue bar 46.2 FG%
red bar 43.2 FG%
blue bar 33.5 Reb
red bar 28.7 Reb
red bar Villanova Off vs  blue bar Alabama Defense
red bar 87.1 Points For
blue bar 70.3 Points Against
red bar 50.7 FG%
blue bar 41.6 FG%
red bar 32.8 Reb
blue bar 32.0 Reb