Joel Ayayi # 11 of the Gonzaga Bulldogs on March 28, 2021 in Indianapolis, Indiana. Andy Lyons / Getty Images / AFP
Perfection is seldom achieved, but Mark Few and the Gonzaga Bulldogs sit just three wins away as they reach an elite eight match against the USC Trojans in the 2021 NCAA men’s basketball tournament.
USC Trojans vs. Gonzaga Bulldogs
Tuesday, March 30, 2021 – 7:15 p.m. ET at Lucas Oil Stadium
Like all season, NCAAB lines prefer Gonzaga to compete, and why not? The Bulldogs were the only team that arrived in Indianapolis with an unbeaten record, more than enough for them to finish first overall, and made it almost too easy to get into Elite Eight. Southern Cal has had an easy journey to battle. The Trojans with the sixth-placed group are hoping to create the biggest surprise in recent program history.
Trojans have covered 7 of the last 9 NCAA tournament slopes
By the time this West Region Championship is released on TBS on Tuesday evening, March Madness will be reduced to just six teams remaining. Either the Trojans and Bulldogs will leave after this one. According to BookMaker (read the BookMaker Review), USC and Gonzaga are favored by nine. Scoreboard goals are in the range of 153.5 to 154.
Andy Enfield’s Club was the sneaky No. 23 in both polls, and most people were shocked that they continued playing after the first round. This part of the western region was supposed be to belong to Iowa or Kansas. However, the Trojans defeated the Jayhawks in round two after defeating Drake fairly easily in the first. The Trojans were seeded lower in Blueblood Kansas than the Jayhawks, but they were easily favorites and were awarded a 34-point whip to the Jayhawks.
Southern Cal faced a familiar opponent last Sunday in Sweet 16 when number 7 Oregon was facing off against Pac-12 rivals. Just like the case against Kansas a strong first half drove the Trojans on until the 82-68 final, her second win over the Ducks that season. The decision was made by defense and 3-point shooting. USC held Oregon below 38% while shooting 10 of 17 beyond the bow.
Zags 8-2 ATS on neutral courses this season
Just in case someone has lived under a rock for the past four months or so, this statistic gives them an idea of how dominant the Bulldogs have been: Tuesday is the first time since the day after Christmas that online sports betting doesn’t Gonzaga are preferred by at least 11 points. Boxing Day’s bout was on a neutral venue against the No. 16 Virginia and the Bulldogs scored 98 against a Cavaliers squad that was widely considered to be one of the best college defenses.
Gonzaga put on another 98 point performance in the first dance to give the No. The No. 16 seed Norfolk State received a 43-point punch. The No. 8 seed, and was only able to cover at a spread of 15.5. With a win of 83-65 against Creighton, Gonzaga reached three consecutive NCAA tournament cover games. Gonzaga’s offense has not been forgotten. It shot nearly 55% in three tournament wins, and hit nearly 60% against Creighton’s defense. Creighton was the Big East leader on field goal percentage.
Evan Mobley #4, the USC Trojan. Sarah Bull / Getty Images / AFP
Programs collide for the third time
There aren’t many teams that have never lost to Gonzaga, but USC can claim that. The matches that preceded them were played about thirty years ago. This is seven years before Few arrived in Spokane. The Trojans had 77 wins in the 1991-92 campaign and the 1992-93 campaign, while the Bulldogs only scored 60 points in each game. It is safe to say USC doesn’t turn Gonzaga into 60. keep on Tuesday.
This nine-point spread may seem easy for the NCAAB, considering that Gonzaga has won 29 games with less than 10 points. Evan and Isaiah Mobley, the Mobley Brothers, should make it more difficult for the Bulldogs to win in color. Isaiah White has been a solid performer for USC against Oregon. I think Gonzaga’s usual suspects Corey Kispert, Drew Timme and Jalen White are too much for them. For the Zags, it’s off to the Final Four!
NCAAB pick: Gonzaga -9 (-105) in Bovada (visit our Bovada Review)
* The selection reflects the line at the moment the author made the game, the odds at the beginning of this article show the live line movement. Our live odds are useful as the lines can change.
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