San Francisco vs Gonzaga Pick & Prediction for Monday

San Francisco vs Gonzaga Pick & Prediction for Monday article feature image

(Photo by Soobum Im/Getty Images). Pictured: Mark Few.

San Francisco vs Gonzaga Pick & Prediction

Monday, Mar 11
11:30pm ET
San Francisco Odds
Point SpreadTotal PointsMoneyline
-110o / -110u
Gonzaga Odds
Point SpreadTotal PointsMoneyline
-110o / -110u
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute NCAAB odds here.

San Francisco takes on Gonzaga in the WCC tournament on Monday, March 11, at 11:30 p.m. ET on ESPN2. Here's a San Francisco vs Gonzaga pick and prediction for Monday.

The Gonzaga Bulldogs are the hottest team in the WCC, and they get set to take on the San Francisco Dons in a semifinal matchup Monday. The Bulldogs had the luxury of eight days of rest before the matchup and should be ready to roll once again.

However, not many folks are giving the Dons enough credit. They enter the game as 8.5-point underdogs, and I expect the public to lean heavily toward the Bulldogs. But San Francisco nearly defeated Gonzaga in Spokane in January, so I expect the Dons to have a chip on their shoulder and give the Bulldogs a tough time.

San Francisco Dons

It's been an impressive year for forward Jonathan Mogbo, who, for my money, is the best player in the conference. Mogbo is a big reason the Dons had a ton of success throughout the year.

Nevertheless, they haven't been able to put it all together against the top dogs in the WCC. San Francisco is a good basketball team, and it has what it takes to hang with Gonzaga and Saint Mary's. Remember, the Dons kept it close until the very end of their first game against the Bulldogs, and they even had a lead early in the second half.

San Francisco is 36th in adjusted defensive efficiency and is excellent at forcing turnovers. The Dons tend to be over-aggressive, however, which leads to getting themselves into foul trouble.

The path to keeping it a competitive game for the Dons starts with their defense, so they will look to slow the game down and force the Bulldogs into difficult shots.

San Francisco is a decent offensive team, but most of its scoring comes from inside of the arc. Gonzaga, however, is an excellent interior defensive team, so the Dons have their work cut out for them.

If the game ends up in a fast-paced contest like the game between the two at the Chase Center two weeks ago, the Dons are in trouble. However, I trust their defensive tenacity and interior scoring to hold down the fort and keep the game closer than many expect.

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Gonzaga Bulldogs

It might be foolish to fade Gonzaga moving forward because it has played excellent basketball over the past month. But many forget the frequent moments where the Bulldogs have struggled.

For instance, they trailed at the half on the road at Pacific about a month ago, a team that went 0-16 in the conference. They should have also lost the first matchup to San Franciso, and they did lose to Santa Clara.

I am not saying that points to them struggling in the contest, but there are multiple pieces of evidence that suggest they are not a typical Mark Few juggernaut squad. And yet, the Bulldogs enter the matchup 10th in adjusted offensive efficiency and within the top 40 in defensive efficiency.

The difference maker for the Bulldogs of late has been the change Few made with the starting lineup. Forward Ben Gregg has started over Braden Huff recently, and it's made an impact on the offensive end.

Big man Graham Ike is having a great season, but the addition of Gregg has created a ton of flow on the offensive end. Frankly, Ike has struggled in multiple games throughout the year, so having a reliable frontcourt mate has made a big difference.

Protecting the basketball and winning the battle on the glass is the key for the Bulldogs. If they do that, there is no reason why they can't win this game comfortably.

San Francisco vs. Gonzaga

Betting Pick & Prediction

I am definitely higher on the Dons than the market is, but the market has also gone too far on the Bulldogs. Remember, there is a real possibility the eight-day break affects them negatively, considering how well they were playing before that.

The Dons' defense is physical, and they were embarrassed the last time these two teams played. They are certainly more capable than the market is giving them the respect for.

I'll take my chances with the team that has the best player on the floor and revenge on its minds. San Francisco may flirt with an upset, and at the very least its defense should keep it within the number.

Pick: San Francisco +8.5 (Play to +7.5)

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