2019 West Coast Tournament Betting Odds, Preview: Heavily Favored Gonzaga Seeks Seventh Straight Title
James Snook-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Gonzaga guard Geno Crandall
- We're analyzing the 10-team West Coast conference tournament, which starts on March 7 in Las Vegas, to find any betting value in the futures market.
- Gonzaga (-850) enters as an enormous favorite, as the Zags seek to win their 22nd consecutive title game appearance and seventh straight championship.
- When it comes to sleepers, the new format makes it very tough to go against the chalk, but I do see one and only one team for which I could make a viable argument.
The West Coast conference tournament will tip off on Thursday in Las Vegas with two opening round games. The WCC really rewards the top performing teams from the regular season, as the No. 1 and No. 2 seeds essentially get a triple bye into the semifinals. Therefore, Gonzaga and St. Mary’s have to win only two games to win the tourney, while the four bottom seeds must win five games in five days!
Let’s take a closer look at the bracket and determine if there is any betting value in the futures market.
2019 West Coast Tournament Odds, Format
- Who: All 10 WCC teams
- Format: Top 2 seeds get triple bye into semis; 3/4 double bye, 5/6 single bye
- When: March 7-12
- Where: Las Vegas, Nevada
- How to Watch: ESPN/ESPN/ESPNU/BYUtv
- Defending Champion: Gonzaga
Who Should Win?
This isn’t rocket science. Gonzaga (-850) is an enormous favorite to win its seventh straight West Coast tournament championship.
Gonzaga is one of the top three teams in the nation playing in a league that will likely not send any other teams to the NCAA tournament unless the Zags get upset. They not only went 16-0 in conference play, they won every game by double digits.
I don’t have to tell you how good this Gonzaga offense is, but just as a reminder — it ranks No. 1 in the country in adjusted efficiency, effective FG% and 2P%. If it has one weakness, it’s lack of depth. That’s it.
And as if Gonzaga needed any help in a tournament in which it has made the championship game in 21 straight years, the WCC changed the format this season as a gesture to convince Gonzaga to stay when rumors started that it might bolt for the Mountain West conference.
Prior to this year, the top six seeds all got a bye into the quarterfinals. But starting in 2019, the top two seeds will essentially get a triple bye into the semifinals. Gonzaga now needs to win one less game to win another title.
Considering I make Gonzaga’s true odds -700, I don’t see any futures value on the Zags, who are priced as high as -1200 at Westgate. (They opened a shockingly high -1500, which is the highest I can ever remember for any conference tournament.)