Every game for No. 3 Gonzaga will be a major event the rest of the regular season as the Bulldogs look to enter the NCAA Tournament without a loss, something last done by Kentucky two seasons ago. The Zags don’t figure to have much chance of losing Thursday night as a big home favorite on NCAA basketball odds vs. San Diego.
San Diego at Gonzaga Odds, Free Pick & TV Info
— USD Men’s Basketball (@usdmbb) January 24, 2017
Why Bet On San Diego?
The Toreros come off a 60-43 loss to San Francisco. San Diego, which was without their second leading scorer Olin Carter (illness), were led by Brett Bailey’s game-high 18 points and eight rebounds. The Dons began the second half on a 7-0 run to open up a 37-21 lead and would hold a double-digit lead for the remainder of the game. The closest USD would get was within 12 points (42-30; 12:15).
The Toreros outrebounded USF 40-28, but it was the team’s lowest scoring output of the season. They shot just 31 percent from the field and missed their first 16 three point attempts. Aside from Bailey’s 18 points, Nassir Barrino chipped in 10 points and tied his career-high with seven rebounds. The Toreros received just 15 points from the rest of the team and struggled in the shooting department — 31.4% from the field (16-51) and just 1-17 from beyond the arc.
The Toreros are 3-2 over its last five games. During this stretch USD has averaged 66.6 ppg & 36.2 rpg, while giving up 64.8 ppg & 28.6 rpg. USD’s balanced scoring attack has been led by Bailey (15.6 ppg, 7.6 rpg), Carter (15.0 ppg), Cameron Neubauer (13.8 ppg, 6.0 rpg), Tyler Williams (8.0 ppg) and Juwan Gray (7.2 ppg, 6.4 rpg).
Through 20 games the Toreros have converted 166-of- 459 three-pointers (.362) with two players shooting 43% or better — Gray (.476, 20-42) and Williams (.438, 21-48). Carter 385, 60-156) leads the Toreros in makes and attempts. Last year through 20 games USD was just 126-463 (.272) beyond the arc. As a team the Toreros are averaging 70.4 ppg and 34.4 rpg while holding their opponents on average to 71.6 ppg and 34.6 rpg overall.
Why Bet On Gonzaga?
GU is off to their best start in program history at 20-0. The Zags are coming off of back-to- back wins over Portland (83-64, Jan. 23 in Portland; 73-52, Jan. 21 in Spokane). Monday night’s victory was the makeup game for the Jan. 7 contest that was postponed due to a winter storm in the Portland area.
Monday’s win was overshadowed a bit by an injury to freshman forward Killian Tillie. He went down under Portland’s basket during a scrap for a rebound. He stayed on the court for a few minutes before needing help walking to the bench.
“Looks like a pretty bad ankle sprain,” coach Mark Few said. Tillie’s 13.9 minutes per game are the fewest of the eight in the rotation, but Tillie packs his playing time with energy, hustle and momentum-changing plays. He’s a terrific offensive rebounder with a nose for the ball. He stretches the floor with his 47.6-percent accuracy beyond the arc, second on the team.
In the next 30 seconds after that injury, forward Johnathan Williams was seen limping and he, too, subbed out of the game. But he’s OK. Nigel Williams-Goss, who took a hard fall on his hip late in Saturday’s win, started and played 26 minutes. Third-ranked Gonzaga equaled the 20-game winning streak of the 2004 and 2006 teams. The 2015 Zags won a program-record 22 in a row.
Washington transfer Williams-Goss leads four Zags in double-digit scoring at 14.5 ppg. He is followed by Przemek Karnowski (12.7ppg, 5.6 rpg), Jordan Matthews (10.9 ppg) and Zach Collins (10.7 ppg). As a team the Zags are averaging a WCC-best 84.9 ppg while ranking No. 2 in scoring defense (63.0 ppg).
Since 1992, the final remaining unbeaten has gotten to 20-0 11 times, including Gonzaga this year. The bad news for Gonzaga? None of those teams won the national title. The good news? Kentucky, Memphis and UMass made the Final Four. The Zags have never gotten that far.
This is the 90th meeting between USD and Gonzaga with the Bulldogs owning a commanding 67-22 series advantage, Gonzaga has won four straight in the series. Last season's wins were 88-52 in Spokane on Jan. 16th, and 82-60 in San Diego on Feb. 25th. USD's last win over Gonzaga came on Feb. 23, 2014 – a 69-66 victory over the No. 22 Zags.
San Diego at Gonzaga Free Pick: Gonzaga Bulldogs
Take Gonzaga on NCAA Basketball odds.