The top-ranked Gonzaga Bulldogs and second-ranked Baylor Bears will both be looking to make a statement when they square off in their highly-anticipated matchup on Saturday. Baylor is coming off an impressive win over a Top 10 opponent the last time out while Gonzaga already has a pair of wins over nationally-ranked opponents. Now, let’s find out which team is offering the best betting value against their College Basketball odds in this showdown.
NCAA Basketball Predictions – No. 1 Gonzaga at No. 2 Baylor
Gonzaga Bulldogs (3-0) Battles Baylor Bears (2-0) In Huge Showdown!
- When: Saturday, Dec. 5, 2020 at 1:00 PM ET
- Where: Bankers Life Fieldhouse, Indianapolis, IN
Why Bet On No. 1 Gonzaga
The top-ranked Bulldogs blitzed No. 6 Kansas 102-90 in their regular season opener on Nov. 26 before taking out a very good Auburn team 90-67 the following day. Gonzaga had a tougher time in getting past No. 10 West Virginia 87-82 on Wednesday. Corey Kispert finished with 19 points and five rebounds in Wednesday’s win while Andrew Nembhard added 19 points and six assists off the bench.
Talented freshman point guard Jalen Scruggs went down with a left foot injury in the first half but returned to steady an offense that clearly struggled without the five-star recruit.
“Him coming back in the game was big for us,” said Nembhard, a transfer from Florida. “He played football [in high school] so you know he’s tough. And we’re pretty versatile so we could do some different things in the second [half] to help him out. It worked out well for us.”
The Bulldogs are averaging a stellar 93.0 points per game (19th) while allowing 79.7 points per game defensively (240th).
Why Bet On No. 2 Baylor
The second-ranked Bears walloped the Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns 112-82 in their regular season opener on Nov. 28 before recording a more impressive win in their second game by beating Washington 86-52 on Sunday. The Bears won their first two games under assistant coach Jerome Tang who was filling in for head coach Scott Drew after testing positive for COVID-19. The Bears then got past No. 5 Illinois on Wednesday as Adam Flagler scored a team-high 18 points off the bench and Davion Mitchell added 15 points, seven assists and four rebounds with Drew back on the sidelines.
“It definitely felt like my teammates and coaches gave me confidence,” Flagler said. “That just allowed me to compete and play as hard as I can. I can’t give enough credit to my teammates for finding me and me finding them.”
Drew said he understands the importance of this matchup.
“Anytime you have 1 vs. 2 in any sport, it draws great attention, visibility, notoriety, interest,” Drew said after the win over Illinois. “They’re very similar to our team. They have a lot of guys who can score 15 or 20 points. It’s going to be a great game and a great opportunity for us.”
Baylor is averaging 93.3 points per game (17th) while limiting the opposition to just 67.7 points per game defensively.
Expert Analysis and prediction
Gonzaga might be the top-ranked team in the country, but Baylor is more athletic, equally well-coached and has a chip on their collective shoulders. After watching a young West Virginia team give them all sorts of trouble just a few days ago, I like Baylor to win and cover the spread. Gonzaga has gone1-4 ATS in their last 5 Saturday games and 1-5 ATS in their last 6 neutral site games. While Baylor has gone an uninspiring1-4 ATS in its last 5 games overall, the Bears are also 4-0 ATS in their last 4 neutral site games. I like Baylor to get the statement-making win in this huge meeting!
Pick: Baylor 86 Gonzaga 77
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