- Notre Dame is an 8.5-point favorite over Louisville
- Louisville is 1-8 straight up and ATS in its last nine
- Read below for analysis and a betting prediction
Notre Dame (16-7, 9-3 ACC) is an 8.5-point favorite over Louisville in an Atlantic Coast Conference game Wednesday at 7 pm ET on ESPNU. The Irish won the first meeting 82-70 Jan. 22 and are looking to sweep the Cardinals for the first time in school history.
Louisville (11-12, 5-6 ACC) has fallen apart since a three-game winning streak that culminated in a 75-72 home victory over Pittsburgh on Jan. 5, losing one coach and eight out of nine games since.
Louisville vs Notre Dame Odds
|Louisville Cardinals||+340||+8.5 (-110)||Over 135.5 (-110)|
|Notre Dame Fighting Irish||-450||-8.5 (-110)||Under 135.5 (-110)|
Odds from BetMGM on Feb. 8.
Notre Dame is an 8.5-point homer favorite over Louisville with the total set at 135.5, among the lowest either team has seen this year. The Irish are -450 on the moneyline, meaning they are have a 81.8% implied win probability. Louisville is +340 on the moneyline, meaning the Cardinals have a 22.7% implied win probability.
Notre Dame has become a big factor in the ACC title odds. Record-wise, the Irish are tied for first with Duke at 9-3. That said, oddsmakers still heavily favor the Blue Devils, who also set second in the country in the latest NCAA Tournament odds.
Notre Dame Trending Up
The Irish’s recent hot streak was interrupted by a lopsided home loss to Duke on Jan. 31, but they responded with road victories at Miami and North Carolina State and are tied with the Blue Devils for the ACC lead after Duke’s loss Monday.
Notre Dame has won seven of eight and 12 of 14 (10-4 ATS) since a 64-56 loss at Indiana that immediately followed a signature 66-62 home win over Kentucky. The Irish need to keep rolling to enhance their NCAA tournament chances in a league that is down this season. Duke is ESPN’s only tournament lock in its most recent “bubble watch.”
Although freshman wing 6’6 Blake Wesley projects as an NBA first-rounder (more likely in 2023), the Irish have relied on a veteran ensemble cast to carry them.
Senior wing 6’6 Dane Goodwin (14.5 points. 5.0 rebounds), Wesley (14.1 points) and senior forward 6’10 Paul Atkinson (12.3 points., 6.8 rebounds) as the Irish’s double-digit scorers, and seniors 6’10 Nate Laszewski (8.4, 7.0) and 6’3 Prentiss Hubb (8.7 points, 3.6 assists) have had their backs.
Atkinson scored a season-high 23 points and Hubb had 15 in a 68-64 victory at Miami last Wednesday. Hubb had three 3-[pointers and a layup in the first 10 minutes of the second half, when the Irish turned a two-point halftime edge into a 54-40 lead.
Laszewski suffered a bruised knee early in the 69-57 victory at North Carolina State on Saturday, and coach Mike Brey called him a game-time decision. The Irish are not deep — all seven in their rotation average at least 20 minutes per game, and no other reserve averages more than 3.7 minutes.
A fifth ACC road win.
A 9-3 start in league play.
𝙏𝙝𝙚 𝙗𝙚𝙨𝙩 𝙨𝙩𝙖𝙧𝙩 𝙞𝙣 𝙥𝙧𝙤𝙜𝙧𝙖𝙢 𝙝𝙞𝙨𝙩𝙤𝙧𝙮. pic.twitter.com/qtF1hWxUAK
— Notre Dame Basketball (@NDmbb) February 7, 2022
The Irish do the small things — they are 19th in Division I in fewest turnovers per game (10.4) and third in fewest fouls per game (13.1). They are second in the ACC in three pointers per game (8.8).
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Notre Dame vs Louisville Head-to-Head Results
The Cardinals had a six-game series winning streak broken in the Irish’s 82-70 victory in Louisville in the first meeting this season, when the Irish shot 63.3 percent from the field and made 15 of 23 three-pointers.
Louisville is 4-2 ATS in the last six meetings. Notre Dame is 6-2 straight up, 7-1 ATS in the last eight games at home. Five of the last seven in South Bend have gone over the total.
➖ 23 pts., 11 reb. (Miami)
➖ 15 pts., 10 reb. (NC State)
➖ 14 pts., 9 reb. (Duke)
📰: https://t.co/qz0PvX6nym pic.twitter.com/048ooVMglm
— ACC Men’s Basketball (@accmbb) February 7, 2022
Louisville have been a strong go-against all season. The Cardinals are 6-15-2 ATS and have covered only once since beating Southeastern Louisiana 86-60 on Dec. 14, going 1-10-2 with their only cover a 67-54 home victory over Boston College on Jan. 19. They are 0-4 as a road dog.
Notre Dame is on the opposite track, 9-2 ATS in its last 11. The Irish are 9-3 ATS in ACC games. Louisville is 2-10-1.
Louisville’s Season of Tumult
Louisville has careened from one distraction after another this season, the suspension of leading scorer and rebounder Malik Williams last week just the latest.
Williams (10.0 points, 8.7 rebounds) was reinstated and will play against Notre Dame after missing the previous two games — an overtime loss at North Carolina and a blowout home loss to Syracuse. He disciplined for not upholding program standards. After an 82-70 loss to the Irish Jan. 22, Williams said, “I don’t have a comment for that” when asked if he though the team had tuned out then-coach Chris Mack’s staff. Mack was removed four days later.
With Malik Williams at exactly 10.0 points per game, this Louisville is in a bit of danger of becoming the first since 1943-44 not to have a double-figure scorer. All 5 starters on the 1986 NCAA championship team averaged more than the leading scorer on this Louisville team.
— Eric Crawford (@ericcrawford) February 1, 2022
Williams had 11 points in the first meeting with Notre Dame, and Jarrod West had 14. Shooting guard Noah Locke (9.8 points), who has attempted 66 more field goals than other Cardinal, is shooting 34.5 percent from the field. In Williams’ absence, forward 6’7 Matt Cross had 13 points and 15 rebounds against North Carolina, his first career double-double.
The Cardinals have tried 11 lineups in an attempt to find a fit. They are shooting 42.0 percent from the field, among the bottom 10 of Power Six teams.
Notre Dame vs Louisville Prediction
It is hard to find two teams with more contrasting seasons. Jekyll, meet Hyde. Smart, senior-led Notre Dame is better than the sum of its parts. Louisville cannot get not get out of its own way. Every indicator points to Notre Dame, the one team here that is playing for something.
The pick: Notre Dame -8.5 (-110)
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