Gonzaga vs Grand Canyon Odds, Pick | NCAA Tourney Betting Guide

Gonzaga vs Grand Canyon Odds, Pick | NCAA Tourney Betting Guide article feature image
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Getty Images. Design by Matt Roembke/Action Network. Pictured from left: Drew Timme of Gonzaga and Ray Harrison of Grand Canyon.

Gonzaga vs Grand Canyon Odds

Friday, March 17
7:35 p.m. ET
truTV
Gonzaga Odds
SpreadTotalMoneyline
-15.5
-110
154.5
-110o / -110u
+1100
Grand Canyon Odds
SpreadTotalMoneyline
+15.5
-110
154.5
-110o / -110u
-1800
Odds via bet365. Get up-to-the-minute college basketball odds here.

The Gonzaga Bulldogs are turning it on at the right time, as they won the WCC Tournament over Saint Mary’s by 26.

They will face Bryce Drew and Grand Canyon Antelopes on Friday in the first round of the NCAA tournament.

Grand Canyon is a team that prospers while shooting 3s, as it ranks 84th 3-point attempt rate.

Meanwhile, the Zags have had issues on defense all year long, which were usually overcome by a loaded offense.

Either way, this should keep the Antelopes within striking distance of the cover, even though the Zags should win the game.


Gonzaga Bulldogs

On offense, the Zags are the best in the nation, ranking first in Adjusted Offensive Efficiency, per KenPom. They run their offense through Drew Timme and shoot 58.9% from 2-point distance and 38.4% from 3.

Their 3-point threats are Julian Strawther, Rasir Bolton, Nolan Hickman and Malachi Smith. All are shooting over 37.5%.

Since the Antelopes can limit catch-and-shoot 3s, they should be better shape defending the perimeter.

Gonzaga ranks 69th on shots at the rim. Since GCU ranks so well in this regard, it will be able to eat into an edge the Zags are used to in almost every game.

That said, GCU has issues in the half-court — 99th in PPP — so even if the game is slowed to the Antelopes’ preferred pace, the Zags can take advantage.

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Grand Canyon Antelopes

Grand Canyon has the 198th-rated Adjusted Defensive Efficiency in the Tournament, per KenPom, but it's holding opponents to a 47.2% eFG%.

Opponents are shooting only 46.8% on the Antelopes from 2-point range and 32% from 3-point range. The Lopes do this by holding opponents to a 3-point attempt rate of only 32.8%. They rank 11th in points per possession on defense at the rim, which is where Gonzaga scores most of its points.

In addition, the Antelopes have held opponents to 1.02 points per possession on catch-and-shoot 3s, which ranks 25th in the country, per ShotQuality.

On the offensive end, it's 3-pointers or nothing for the Antelopes. They do rank 71st in Rim & 3 Rate (ShotQuality), but almost 35% of their cumulative points have come from deep.

They shoot 37.6% from 3-point range.

Gonzaga yields a 3-point rate of 35% while ranking 286th in Open 3 Rate on defense (ShotQuality).

GCU will have its chances to keep this game within reach, and it will need to do so by getting open looks from downtown and hitting these shots.

Photo by CBB Analytics

Other than that, the Antelopes can get fouled when needed. They rank 35th in free-throw attempt rate. Gonzaga only ranks 55th on defense, so there will be some free throws awarded to the Lopes.

This is where the importance of GCU hitting its 3s comes into play.


Gonzaga vs Grand Canyon Betting Pick

Gonzaga ranks well rebounding the ball on offense and defense (97th and 70th) compared to the Antelopes (116th and 264th). The Antelopes will not have to worry about this discrepancy if they can target the clear holes in the Gonzaga defensive scheme.

Gonzaga struggles mightily guarding off of screens and on the perimeter. GCU has the opportunity to put up points in these scenarios.

Take the Antelopes at +16 (-110). This is way too many points against a weak Gonzaga defense — no matter how well the team is playing lately.

Play this to +15 (-110).

Pick: Grand Canyon +16 (Play to +15)

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