The Louisville Cardinals will go for their fifth straight victory on Saturday when they visit the ACC-leading Virginia Cavaliers in a key conference game for both teams. The Cardinals sit one game back of the Cavaliers in the conference standings and have won three of their last four on the road after beating the Miami Hurricanes 63-55 and covering the spread as 4.5-point favorites at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com on Tuesday.
Louisville is 19-3 overall and has covered three of four following a stretch where the team did not beat the line in six of seven. The Cardinals took advantage of being well rested against the Hurricanes, arriving in Miami one day early and then getting a combined 56 points from Montrezl Harrell, Chris Jones and Terry Rozier, each of whom played at least 38 minutes in the win. Their lone road loss took place against the North Carolina Tar Heels back on Jan. 10 when they dropped a tough 72-71 decision as three-point underdogs on the college basketball odds.
The Cavaliers rebounded from their only setback of the season with a 75-64 road victory against the Tar Heels as one-point favorites on Monday. They had fallen at home to the Duke Blue Devils 69-63 as 5.5-point favorites last Saturday following an 18-0 start to the year that had them ranked as the No. 2 team in the country behind the unbeaten Kentucky Wildcats, which are overwhelming favorites to win the 2015 NCAA tournament.
Virginia has since fallen to No. 3 nationally this week after suffering that first loss. However, the Cavs face a fairly easy schedule down the stretch, starting a string of four of five at home against Louisville before wrapping up the regular season with three of four on the road, capped by a visit to the Cardinals on March 7.
Bettors can expect a low-scoring game between the ACC’s two best defensive teams. Virginia leads the league in scoring defense, allowing just 50.9 points per game, while Louisville is right behind at 58.8 ppg. The OVER has cashed in two straight for the Cavaliers following a 5-0-1 run UNDER the total. The UNDER has cashed in the past two games for the Cardinals after the OVER was 4-1 in their previous five.