Butler & Georgetown Play Old-Fashioned Big East Defense To Go 'Under'

Willie Bee

Wednesday, December 27, 2017 1:29 PM UTC

Wednesday, Dec. 27, 2017 1:29 PM UTC

No team has a tougher early conference schedule than Butler in the Big East, and the Bulldogs are slight favorites on the NCAA basketball odds at Georgetown for Wednesday's game.

NCAAB Season Record: 17-17 (-0.85)

Butler Bulldogs at Georgetown HoyasFree NCAAB Pick: Under 145.5Best Line Offered: Heritage

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Conference openers always produce their fair share of butterflies as teams hope for a fast start on their league fixtures. Expect a few more than usual Wednesday evening, especially on the benches, when the Butler Bulldogs travel to the nation’s capital to meet the Georgetown Hoyas.

That extra nervousness comes from the coaches, Butler’s LaVall Jordan and Georgetown’s Patrick Ewing, making their Big East debuts, especially for Ewing, who doesn’t want to drop his first Big East clash with his alma mater despite being underdogs on their own floor. Fox Sports 1 has the 6:30 PM (ET) tip at Capital One Arena, and Butler is favored for the 6th straight time in the rivalry, Bookmaker running a -4 line with 145 for the total.

Both Bring 2-Game Win Streaks Into Conference Opener

Jordan’s Bulldogs tuned up for this one with wins last week vs. Morehead State and Western Illinois, splitting covers in the two contests. They were hot from outside in the 107-46 rout of the Leathernecks, sinking 18 of 31 from beyond the arc. It was a much different story for Butler in the three losses, shooting 35% overall (68-194) and less than 32% from 3-point range in the defeats to Purdue, Texas and Maryland. The Bulldogs expect to have senior Tyler Wideman back after the forward missed the last game due to having his wisdom teeth pulled.

Georgetown also took it relatively easy last week in a pair of wins over North Texas and Alabama A&M, the Hoyas covering the NCAA basketball odds each time after failing to beat the spreads in their previous five. Ewing’s troops were ice cold from outside in their only setback, an 86-79 overtime loss at home to Syracuse in which the Hoyas made just 2-for-17 from beyond the arc and allowed the Orange to collect 19 offensive boards.

Series History, Final Thoughts & A Free Pick

They haven’t met all that often, with tonight’s tilt just the 11th matchup between Butler and Georgetown. All of the previous 10, however, have come in the last eight years, starting with a Hoyas win at the 2009 Jimmy V Classic. The schools split road wins a year ago, leaving the Hoyas with a 6-4 overall edge. It took more than 40 minutes to complete the last two meetings in DC, the Bulldogs winning each time as small road chalk. The last four matchups skirted past totals in the 143½-148 range.

In a series that has resulted in close scores, taking the points with the home team is tempting. So is following the trend on the scoreboard. Instead, I’ll buck the current run of ‘overs’ and play the ‘under’ with my free college basketball pick.

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