How St. John’s basketball can pull off upset against Villanova

St. John's basketball (Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports)
St. John's basketball (Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports) /
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St. John's basketball
St. John’s basketball head coach Mike Anderson and guard Posh Alexander (Photo by Porter Binks/Getty Images) /

St. John’s basketball is looking to pull off the upset against Villanova on Wednesday night. 

A St. John’s basketball season that looked like it was headed south quickly has hope again and the Red Storm (11-7, 5-6 Big East) are looking to catapult themselves in the NCAA Tournament conversation.

The Johnnies welcome the No. 3 Villanova Wildcats (11-1, 6-0 Big East) to Queens for the first time since 1994 as St. John’s is playing all of its home games at Carnesecca Arena amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Mike Anderson’s team is arguably playing the best basketball in the Big East Conference, only behind Villanova, winning five of its last six after holding on to defeat Marquette for its fourth consecutive victory.

ALSO READ: St. John’s quiet leader behind midseason turnaround

Villanova and Jay Wright have only lost once this season and have shown no rust since returning from an extended COVID-19 related pause.

The Virginia Tech Hokies have been the only team to knock off the Wildcats this season and they did it inside the Mohegan Sun Bubble in the third game in four days for ‘Nova.

Villanova has played three games since December 23, two victories coming over Seton Hall, and its first matchup with the Pirates being the closest game with just a winning margin of two.

St. John’s basketball has work cut out for itself

Senior point guard Collin Gillespie, who many consider a favorite for the Big East Player of the Year Award, leads Villanova by averaging 15.5 points per game, as does sophomore forward Jeremiah Robinson-Earl.

ALSO READ: Posh Alexander named as Freshman of Week, again

Justin Moore has continued his upward trajectory following his freshman season posting 13.5 points per contest as a sophomore while senior Jermaine Samuels seems to be the forgotten man of this Villanova attack with 9.8 points and 6.8 rebounds per game.

A lot will have to fall in the favor of St. John’s if they are to spring the home upset but it might be more conceivable than many think.