Is No. 4 Gonzaga A Winning Pick For 2017 NCAA Championship?

Posted by Eric Williams on Thursday,March 9, 2017 1:45, EST in

The fourth-ranked Gonzaga Bulldogs (32-1 SU, 22-7-1 ATS) have had an absolutely phenomenal season in reaching the nation’s No. 1 ranking for several weeks while losing just one game all season long.

If you’re wondering whether the Bulldogs are a good pick to win the 2017 NCAA national championship, then you need some expert insight of the Bulldogs and their chances to do just that. Let’s find out now if the Bulldogs can cash in on their value-packed 10/1 odds to win the national championship. Find the updated NCAA basketball betting lines here.

Is No. 4 Gonzaga A Winning Pick For 2017 NCAA Championship?

 

 

National Championship Odds

Gonzaga 10/1

The Good

There’s a whole lot of good when it comes to Gonzaga this season. The Gonzaga Bulldogs rank a fantastic 13th nationally in scoring (84.6 ppg) and an even more impressive eighth in points allowed (61.2 ppg). The Bulldogs rank an identically stupendous second in both, field goal shooting percentage (51.8%) and defensive field goal percentage (36.8%).

Not only that, but Gonzaga also shares the ball as well as any team in the country with five players averaging double figures in scoring and two more players putting up at least 7.6 points per contest. Last but not least, the Bulldogs also have a player that should be in the national Player of the Year race in senior guard and leading scorer Nigel Williams-Goss (16.9 ppg, 5.7 rpg, 4.8 apg, 52.1% FG, 91.0% FT).

The Bad

There’s not a whole lot of bad when it comes to Gonzaga, but I do have one issue with the caliber of their conference opponents. Outside of 18th-ranked St. Mary’s and  tough BYU ballclub that was the only team to beat them this season, Gonzaga has beaten up on the likes of lowly programs like Pepperdine (9-22), Pacific (11-22), Portland (11-22) and San Diego (13-18).

While the Bulldogs have beaten nationally-ranked teams like Arizona, Florida and a dangerous Iowa State squad, all three of those victories came in the first month of the season, so they haven’t really faced any elite teams in quite some time and I believe this could come back to haunt them later on.

The Bottom Line

Gonzaga reminds me a lot of last year’s national championship winners, the Villanova Wildcats in the sense that they play smart basketball at both ends of the floor and always give themselves a chance for success because of their heady, share-the-wealth, style of play.

Still, I don’t think Gonzaga will be able to get past more elite and athletically superior teams that play equally as ‘smart’ as they do. I’m thinking the Zags reach the Sweet 16 at the very least before running into a bit of trouble. I’m going with an Elite Eight appearance at best for Gonzaga.