Virginia at West Virginia -4 O/U 134.5
The personnel may be slightly different but stylistically, this year's West Virginia and Virginia squads are the same as they've always been under their respective head coaches. Under Bob Huggins, the Mountaineers are once again turning games into chaos by pressing and attempting to force turnovers. Virginia meanwhile continues to grind and not get baited into any sort of up-and-down affair. Two years ago, with a closing total of 135, both teams met at Madison Square Garden with the Cavaliers winning 70-54. The Mountaineers managed 36 points in the first half but were held to only 18 after the break. The game was actually more to WVU's liking with 65 possessions, 41 combined free throws, and 37 combined turnovers. Despite that, it still went well under the total. Last year, West Virginia returned the favor with a 66-57 win in Charlottesville. That game features only 61 possessions and went under the closing total of 128.5. Tonight's matchup opened 131.5 and was bet up to 134.5. At some point, it will get bet under. Bob Huggins had this to say about facing UVA, "A lot gets said about their defense but the reality is, they control the game with their offense,” Huggins said. “What happens is, you don’t want to go down and play defense for 30 seconds, come back on offense and take a shot in five seconds and then go back and play defense for another 30 seconds... It’s kind of like running the ball in football, you control the clock. They do a great job of controlling the clock.” Yes, West Virginia has a much easier time creating "chaos" at home but it's far easier against lesser competition and/or teams seeing it for the first time. Virginia obviously doesn't qualify under those parameters. Play this one under.