st johns villanova betting preview
Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images

The St. John’s Red Storm (14-13) make the brief trip south tonight to take on the No. 12 Villanova Wildcats (21-6). With a 10-4 conference record, Villanova still has its eyes set on a regular season title and the top seed in the Big East Tournament , while St. John’s tries to shake off a rough 1-5 stretch and improve upon a dismal 3-11 conference record in attempt to avoid a possible last place finish.

Following a rare three-game losing streak to begin the month, the Wildcats have rebounded with four straight wins, including an impressive 64-55 road win over Xavier this past Saturday.

If the Jan. 28 meeting between these two teams, a 79-59 Villanova win, is any indication of what is to take place at Finneran Pavilion tonight, the Red Storm could be in big, big trouble.

With the backdrop set, let’s jump into our St. Johns vs. Villanova betting preview.

St. Johns vs. Villanova Odds

Here’s the line for the St. Johns vs. Villanova at DraftKings Sportsbook, which is offering up to $1,000 free if you’re in New Jersey when you sign up here:

  • Spread: St. Johns +12.5, Villanova -12.5
  • Moneyline: St. Johns +650, Villanova -1000
  • Total: 146

Note: DraftKings Sportsbook bettors in New Jersey can grab Villanova to win by 15 or more points at a boosted +125 payout.

Bets We Like With a Villanova Win

ESPN’s Basketball Power Index gives Villanova a rather overwhelming 88.1% chance of winning this contest. Frankly, that seems like a fairly certain outcome given Villanova is 92-22 under Wright as a favorite in home conference games. That overall record includes an absurd 49-4 mark as a double-digit favorite and a lights-out 34-2 record when his teams are favored by 12 or more points.

Villanova to Win by 15 or More Points at DraftKings Sportsbook

Villanova dusted the Red Storm on the road in the first meeting between these two teams, and despite Villanova’s 2-4 ATS mark this season as a favorite of 12 or more points, Wright’s squads have excelled with similar spreads in Big East matchups over the years. Villanova is 13-6-1 ATS in conference games when favored between 12-14 points and 8-4-1 ATS when favored between 12-13 points. With a boosted payout in play, this is worth a look.

You can get in on this promo and up to $1,000 in free bets at DraftKings Sportsbook when you sign up here in New Jersey.

Villanova to go Over 79.5 Team Points at William Hill Sportsbook

After a sluggish start to the month of February, the Wildcats are starting to click as the regular season draws to a close, just like they have in so many previous years. While this game has all the potential makings of a letdown spot following that key win over Xavier, Wright is one of the nation’s top coaches, and it’s hard to imagine his team will come out sluggish with a lot to play for against an opponent that is on the ropes. What’s more, Villanova demonstrated it is more than capable of putting up big numbers against conference bottom-dwellers a week ago when it dropped 91 points on a hapless DePaul squad. I’m betting the Wildcats come out with the foot on the gas–and leave it there.

Grab this one at William Hill and take advantage of a $150 risk-free bet.

Bets We Like With a St. John’s Win

Do you believe in miracles? If you do, I suggest trying the +700 payout offered on a St. John’s win over at William Hill (bet now), which has the market’s strongest payout on a Red Storm upset.

Bets We Like Independent of Outcome

Jermaine Samuels to Go Over 11.5 Points at DraftKings Sportsbook

Samuels struggled over a four-game stretch from Jan. 25 to Feb. 8 in which he averaged only six points per game as his team went 1-3. However, he has scored at least 13 points in three of his last four games, including a stellar 17-point performance this past Saturday at Xavier. Samuels has been playing with more confidence lately, and I think he eclipses the total here.

St. John’s vs. Villanova Prediction

Pick: Villanova appears to be hitting its stride as it jockeys down the stretch for the conference’s top spot. St. John’s, meanwhile, has been in a mess in recent weeks, failing to offer bettors much reason to think this meeting will be any different than the first–a Villanova rout. There’s no doubt 12.5 points is a lot, particularly in a conference game, but Wright will have his team ready to play, thus I expect that Villanova pulls away late and covers this number.

Villanova (-12.5) over St. John’s

Bob Wankel is a credentialed Phillies writer for Crossing Broad. He is also Vice President of Sports Betting Content at XL Media and co-hosts Crossed Up: A Phillies Podcast. A South Jersey resident and graduate of Monmouth University, his past work includes 12+ years in education and six seasons as a freelancer at NFL Films. On Twitter: @Bob_Wankel E-mail: