By Matt Leon
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Villanova brings an 11-14 record into Saturday night’s match-up with Notre Dame at the Center.
That 14th loss came on Wednesday night down in South Florida. The Wildcats played without leading scorer Maalik Wayns in that game because of a sprained knee and on Friday afternoon, Wildcats head coach Jay Wright talked to KYW Newsradio about the junior guard’s status for the Irish.
“Right now, I’d say doubtful. He’s cleared, but he just doesn’t have great confidence in pushing off that knee.”
The injury woes don’t stop there as sophomore guard James Bell is out for Saturday because of an sprained left ankle he suffered against the Bulls. Wright talks about how they’ll fill in the gaps.
“We’re going to probably play a little bit bigger, get (junior forward/center) Maurice Sutton in the starting line-up and play JayVaughn Pinkston at the three. So we will be a bigger team and hopefully a better defensive team.”
Listen to KYW’s Matt Leon interview Jay Wright:
Notre Dame is 18-8 this season and 10-3 in the Big East, Wright talks about what makes them so tough.
“Just a very intelligent, well-balanced team. Four guys that average double figures, they share the ball extremely well. And an outstanding defensive team, they are the number one points against team in the conference. So we got a team that can control the tempo and also play very well defensively.”
Notre Dame brings seven game winning streak into this game. Last time out on Wednesday, they beat up Rutgers 71-53.
Villanova and Notre Dame will tip-off at 9:00pm at the Wells Fargo Center.