No. 13 Gonzaga (21-5) is rolling once again with wins in 16 of its last 18 games ahead of a showdown with Loyola Marymount (17-10) tonight. Loyola is just 1-3 in its last four contests but is 6-2 against the spread (ATS) over its last eight.
The Lions shocked the college basketball world by pulling off a dramatic road upset as 16-point underdogs over the Bulldogs last month, so Gonzaga will be looking for revenge. After all, it’d won the previous 19 matchups before that debacle.
Can the Bulldogs get vengeance or will Loyola Marymount pick up another signature win?
Here are the odds before diving into my best bet for the matchup:
Gonzaga vs. Loyola Marymount State Odds, Spread, and Total
Gonzaga vs. Loyola Marymount Prediction and Pick
Gonzaga’s offense is still a wagon, ranking second in effective field goal percentage (57.2) in the country. The Bulldogs had an uncharacteristically poor shooting night in their loss to Loyola last month, shooting just 4-for-14 from deep despite making over 37% of their 3-pointers on the season.
I think Gonzaga is due for positive regression there and we’re getting a value on the Bulldogs with such a small spread.
Loyola is a mediocre defensive team and does not force turnovers, ranking a pathetic 313th (16.1%) in defensive turnover percentage. That’s bad news against a Gonzaga team that’s one of the best in the country at protecting the ball, turning it over on only 15.4% of its possessions (21st nationally).
With the Lions in a rough stretch right now, I think this line is an overreaction to the first game. Consider that the spread last month was 16.5, and in the three meetings between these teams prior to that, the smallest spread was 25! Now it’s only 8.5? Give me a break.
Back Gonzaga to show it’s still the top dog in the conference and pick up a convincing road win.
Game odds refresh periodically and are subject to change.