West Virginia Mountaineers vs. Pittsburgh Panthers
The West Virginia Mountaineers and the Pittsburgh Panthers meet for a Big East rivalry game on Monday. The Mountaineers are -7 point favorites over the Panthers with an over/under point total set at 137.5.
The West Virginia Mountaineers are coming off of back to back losses though Bob Huggins team doesn’t feel like they got a fair shake in their last game on Saturday at Syracuse. WVU is 5-4 in the Big East, tied for sixth place in the standings, and a convincing 10-1 at home this season. Kevin Jones is averaging 20.9 points and 11.4 rebounds, Darryl Bryant is averaging 17.1 points, and Deniz Kilicli is averaging 10.5 points and 5.4 rebounds. As a team West Virginia is averaging 74.3 points, 15,4 assists, and they are shooting 45.7 percent while defensively they are allowing 66.3 points and their opponents are shooting 43.9 percent. West Virginia is has played the number three ranked schedule in the nation and they are battle tested.
The Pittsburgh Panthers ended their seven game losing streak and now Jamie Dixon’s team finds themselves on a two game winning streak. Pittsburgh is 2-7 in Big East play, 2-4 on the road this season, and in 15th place in the conference. Ashton Gibbs is averaging 16.5 points, Nasir Robinson is averaging 12.6 points and 6.8 rebounds, and Lamar Patterson is averaging 9.6 points and 5.8 rebounds. As a team Pitt is averaging 71.4 points, 39 offensive rebounds, and they are shooting 46.2 percent while defensively they are allowing 66.6 points and their opponents shoot 44.2 percent. Pittsburgh may not be as bad as they looked during their losing streak but they certainly aren’t as good as their pre-season ranking.
West Virginia is 8-0 against the spread following a loss, 8-2 against the spread in their last 10 home games, and 4-0 against the spread in their last four home games against a team with a losing road record. Pittsburgh is 4-1 against the spread in their last five games overall, 6-2 against the spread in their last eight road games, and 4-1 against the spread in their last five Big East games. Pittsburgh has covered in five of the last seven meetings of these two.
Pittsburgh is playing better of late, at least winning, but both of these teams are adept at hitting the boards and I see that as creating second chances and scoring and for that reason I like the over here.