#FeedonThis: Will it be MI or Villanova?


Welcome to VAVEL USA's LIVE coverage of the 2018 Final Four championship game: Michigan Wolverines vs. Villanova Wildcats! The Big Ten tournament was just great. The Wolverines needed a second-half surge against Loyola to turn a 10 point deficit into a 12 point victory. Almost half of Villanova's shot attempts this season (47.5 percent) have come from 3-point range, and the Wildcats make those long-range shots at a super-efficient 40.1 percent. Villanova looms over the Wolverines as obvious favorites, but don't discount the Wolverines. And with Jalen Brunson penetrating and creating, the Wildcats get their share of easy layups as well. It's clear Loyola was underseeded, though they weren't among the nation's elite teams. The last time Villanova and MI faced each other was in the 2014 Legends Championship, a Thanksgiving tournament in NY. They force teams to play down low and once their opponents get there, MI uses their size to dominate.

Facing a team that shoots as well as Villanova, limiting the takes from 3-point range is about as important as limiting the makes.

Villanova, Michigan will live by the 3-pointer, but which team will defend it? This success has brought them to third in KenPom's adjusted defensive efficiency rankings, behind only Virginia and Cincinnati.

Seniors to the rescue: Aside from Moe Wagner and Charles Matthews, nobody made any shots in the semifinal game.

The Wildcats looked nearly invincible against Kansas, but Mo Wagner and MI will keep it closer than many expect.

Conventional wisdom says Villanova has to ignore their opponent and play their game, but honestly, it doesn't matter. "They have some great offensive players and they're great defensively".

Villanova is 23-2 when it hits 10 or more 3-pointers in a game.

The Villanova students have to like their seats for the NCAA championship game.

Put it this way: Freddie Banks would love this Villanova team.

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MI may have a better answer than the Jayhawks had.

Michigan's goal will be to get Villanova away from the 3-point line and redirect shots. If the Wildcats win, it will likely mean their shots were falling, and 7-point spread doesn't seem so large when 3's are dropping left and right. Hail! to Michigan! Being a Yooper (that's a born-and-raised resident of Michigan's Upper Peninsula, north of the Mackinac Bridge), I have to cheer for Michigan in this particular matchup.

There's quite a few statistically noteworthy items Villanova will be chasing on Monday night.

Eric Paschall and Omari Spellman: Bill Self and Kansas had no clue what to do with Paschall.

The German big man carried MI through its struggles in the first half by using his size advantage against the smaller Ramblers, snagging five offensive rebounds to notch a double-double by halftime. Keeping Paschall and fellow big man Omari Spellman off the boards will be huge for MI. What a ride it has been.

MI basketball has set a school record for wins with 33.

Villanova has a way of doing that, too.

In many other ways off the court, however, the schools are very different. That's just how modern basketball goes now.

Derek Stevens, who is a MI alum and CEO of the D Las Vegas Hotel & Casino, is poised to win $1 million if the Wolverines come away with a big win.