Gonzaga vs Portland Odds, Picks: History Suggests This Side of Total

Gonzaga vs Portland Odds, Picks: History Suggests This Side of Total article feature image

Photo by Chris Gardner/Getty Images. Pictured: Drew Timme (Gonzaga)

Gonzaga vs Portland Odds

Saturday, Jan. 28
7 p.m. ET
Gonzaga Odds
-106o / -114u
Portland Odds
-106o / -114u
Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute college basketball odds here.

Gonzaga is no longer the class of the WCC. Following a loss to Loyola Marymount and a poor effort against Pacific, that title belongs to Saint Mary's.

Mark Few's Bulldogs will look to re-assert their West Coast dominance against the Pilots in Portland Saturday.

Shantay Legans' squad made noise in the non-conference, but Portland's luck soon ran out. Portland is now just 3-5 in league play.

Both teams are looking to change the tone of their seasons in this battle. Let's look at the betting odds and see how we can capitalize on that.

Gonzaga Bulldogs

If you want to know where Gonzaga's issues lie, look no further than right here:

Image Credit: The Slipper Still Fits

The Zags' defensive numbers have plummeted during conference play this year. We knew their pick-and-roll defense and rim protection would take a hit sans Chet Holmgren, but the numbers are indescribably bad.

Per ShotQuality, the Zags are:

  • 313th in half-court PPP allowed
  • 325th in pick-and-roll PPP allowed
  • 298th in PPP allowed at the rim
  • 344th in post-up PPP allowed

None of this is the scheme, either, as the Zags allow offenses to run all the aforementioned sets at an above-average frequency.

On a recent episode of Drew Timme's podcast, Mark Few said there's no "communication" with this squad. I'm not entirely sure what that means, but going on your star player's podcast to discuss poor on-court communication doesn't seem like a great way to communicate.

“We have a team that outside of Drew …DOESN’T TALK. They don’t like to talk.” – Coach Mark Few on the Zag’s communication issues this year 👀

Coach Few had much more to say on this phone topic on Ep 11. Click below to listen!https://t.co/STQ2equUfbpic.twitter.com/ZxOS0pMVGr

— Gimme Timme Podcast (@GimmeTimmePod) January 19, 2023

Timme continues to be an offensive weapon, and the closest thing we'll get to Kevin McHale. There's almost nobody nationally that combines his usage with his efficiency.

Behind Timme, the Zags are still one of the deadliest offenses in college basketball. But the only way Gonzaga wins is by dropping 100 points, something the Bulldogs have done seven times in 17 wins this year.

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Portland Pilots

The early-season Portland shine has worn off, and now we're left with the true version of the Pilots.

The Pilots are an okay offensive team. They share the ball well, space the floor and get to the line at the seventh-highest rate nationally.

The team can also shoot. Moses Wood, Kristian Sjolund and Juan Sebastian Gorosito are all shooting over 40% from 3 on a combined 12 attempts per game.

All three move extremely well off the ball, specifically on off-screen sets.

Wings Tyler Robertson and Alden Applewhite are generally on the ball.

Offensively, the Pilots are too 3-point reliant. They never attack the rim and don't score when they get down there.

Defensively, the Pilots can't stop a nosebleed. ShotQuality projects them for a good amount of positive shooting regression on defense — specifically from 3 — but that doesn't account for all the underlying issues.

The Pilots are a terrible pick-and-roll defense, allow plenty of open 3s and don't care to defend the paint.

Shantay deserves credit for turning the Pilots around, but the offensive improvements have been met with defensive regression. How will Pilot fans respond when Shantay posts a second-straight 7-7 West Coast season?

Gonzaga vs Portland Betting Pick

Unfortunately, I'm making the squarest pick possible on this game.

That said, it's impossible not to bet the over in this game.

Both offenses have trended up this season, while both defenses have taken severe nose dives.

In the first edition of this matchup, there were 190 total points scored in a 115-75 Gonzaga victory.

It gets crazier. Eight straight matchups between Portland and Gonzaga have gone over, with recent scores of:

  • 1/14/23: 115-75 Gonzaga
  • 1/29/22: 104-72 Gonzaga
  • 1/9/21: 116-88 Gonzaga
  • 1/2/20: 85-72 Gonzaga
  • 1/19/19: 89-66 Gonzaga
  • 1/25/18: 95-79 Gonzaga
  • 1/11/18: 103-57 Gonzaga
  • 1/23/17: 83-64 Gonzaga

I'm unsure if the market will ever catch up to Gonzaga-Portland overs. At this point, it's like Service Academy unders.

I expect both offenses to cook the respective defenses Saturday evening. Both offenses will cruise over 1.00 PPP, and the pace should crack 70 possessions.

For once, sit back and enjoy betting the over.

Pick: Over 164

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