Gonzaga Bulldogs vs Grand Canyon Antelopes: March Madness Betting Preview
Three Seeds Are 122-22 All-Time Against 14 Seeds
We start our Gonzaga vs Grand Canyon preview with a glance at what is one of the more intriguing March Madness point spreads. We think there is some real value with one of these teams, which is why they’re at the top of our College Basketball picks list. The Zags are 13-18-1 ATS this season, the Antelopes finished 14-18-1 ATS.
Zags Looking to Regain Swagger
It’s hard to imagine that a team that finished 28-5, could be viewed as having a down season. As you can see with their spread record, the enthusiasm that bettors once had for the Zags has cooled to quiet confidence after a season where Gonzaga failed to cover spreads more times than not.
Don’t feel too bad for the Zags who have won nine straight games including their two wins in the West Coast Conference tournament. Mark Fews’ team has covered four of their last five games.
How the Zags Got Here
Part of the reason why Gonzaga had a less-than-normal performance against the number was their willingness to play a difficult NCAAB schedule that included Michigan State (Won 64-63), Texas (Lost 93-74), Kentucky ( Won 88-72), and Alabama ( Won 100-90). The Zags finished 6-3 against quad-one teams and 5-0 against quad-two teams.
It’s worth noting that Gonzaga finished the regular season with eight straight overs, but two straight unders in the conference tournament. The Zags finished 8-10 ATS when favored by 10 or more points and 6-7 ATS as a favorite of 5 or more points.
How Far Can The Zags Go?
We think the Zags will make it through to the Elite 8, with UCLA being their destiny. The Bruins are likely to take it from there but a nice run from Gonzaga is expected. We know Gonzaga can go point for point with anyone, but it’s not out of the question to worry about the Zags defensively.
Gonzaga gives up 73.6 points per game which ranks them 287th in the country. In addition, we’ve talked about it in previous previews, but the Zags are also a poor free-throw shooting team (69.8%). That is one of the most important aspects of a team’s game as they move through the tournament.
Antelopes Regain WAC Crown, Automatic Bid
When you have three players that shoot over 40% from three, you’re going to be a difficult out in March. They’ll need every bit of that if they hope to stay with a Zags team who can score into the 90s with ease. Grand Canyon has won 8 of their last 9 games while covering 6 of their last 8.
This is the Antelopes’ second trip to the NCAA Tournament after being a mainstay in the division two tournament for years. 2021 was the first time Grand Canyon had a ticket to the postseason, losing to Iowa (86-72).
How The Antelopes Got Here
The ‘Lopes net rating was third in WAC and 101st overall, but a 4-game run in the WAC Tournament allowed Bryce Drew’s team to punch their ticket. Grand Canyon only played six games against quad one and two, splitting the six.
Now, Grand Canyon will play anyone at any time but was only able to grab games against Nevada, North Texas, and Sam Houston. None of those games were at their Phoenix campus. The highest net-rated team to make the trip to Grand Canyon was a date with conference mate Southern Utah who disposed of the Antelopes, 76-74 in late January.
How Far Will Grand Canyon Go?
Like the tourist spot the university is named after, it’s something you’ll see once and not feel the need to go again for at least another year.
Handicapping the Game
To conclude our Gonzaga vs Grand Canyon preview by jumping into the betting numbers for each team. We anticipate that this game will be a classic. Although the Zags will advance, the 15 ½ points are too many points for the Zags who will likely be more focused on their second-round match-up. Gonzaga has failed to cover their last five tournament games, while the Lopes are on a 4-0 cover run against teams playing .600 ball or better.
That concludes our Gonzaga vs Grand Canyon preview, we wish you the best with this year’s tournament. (Odds change frequently, be sure to check for the most up to date changes.)
|Last Updated: 3/14/2022||Team A|
|Moneyline||Zags -2000, Antelopes +925|
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