Sure, it’s a huge day for the grid-heads what with the College Football Playoff national semifinals taking place starting at 4 p.m. on ESPN. Not to fear, however. There are some college basketball games on television Thursday, as well, including a couple of marquee matchups.
No. 6 Xavier travels to Philadelphia to play no. 16 Villanova in a key Big East tilt at high noon on Fox Sports 1. Xavier is a perfect 12-0. Villanova is 10-2 with losses to Oklahoma (78-55) and at Virginia (86-75). But Villanova is a perfect 7-0 at home.
Ken Pomeroy actually ranks Villanova a spot in front of Xavier. His numbers have Villanova at No. 6 with the Muskies at No. 7. According to Pomeroy, Xavier is the fourth-best defensive efficiency team in the nation.
Over on the CBS Sports Network, No. 12 Providence is at No. 9 Butler in another Big East matchup. Providence is 12-1. Butler is 11-1.
Here is the list of college basketball games on television for Thursday:
Thursday, Dec. 31
▪ 12:00 - Xavier at Villanova (Fox Sports 1)
▪ 2:00 - Drake at Wichita State (ESPNU)
▪ 2:15 - Creighton at St. John's (Fox Sports 1)
▪ 2:30 - Providence at Butler (CBS Sports)
▪ 11:00 - BYU at Saint Mary’s (ESPNU)
How Top 25 fared Wednesday
- No. 4 Maryland beat Penn State 70-64
- No. 5 Virginia beat Oakland 71-58
- No. 7 North Carolina beat Clemson 80-69
- No. 11 Iowa State beat Coppin State 104-84
- No. 15 Duke beat Long Beach State 103-81
- No. 19 West Virginia beat Virginia Tech 88-63
- No. 24 South Carolina beat Francis Marion 78-56