Last Updated: 2017-03-06
It will be a battle between West Coast opponents when the Gonzaga Bulldogs (20-6) welcome the Pacific Tigers (7-17) to McCarthey Athletic Center. Action starts at 9:00 pm ET on Thursday, Feb. 18 and can be seen on RT, EFC and ES3.
The Bulldogs are hoping for a better outcome after their 69-60 loss to SMU in their last game. Domantas Sabonis recorded 20 points and 16 rebounds, earning his 16th double-double of the year. The Tigers, meanwhile, are feeling some disappointment after their tough 65-63 loss to Pepperdine in their last outing. Alec Kobre had a game-high 22 points.
This will be the second matchup of the season between these two teams. The Bulldogs won the first game 71-61. Eric McClellan had a stellar game with 19 points, one rebound, and three steals.
While the Bulldogs have a good Straight Up (SU) record (20-6), they’ve been poor Against The Spread (ATS) with a 9-15-1 record. They are 7-2 ATS over their last 10 games. The Bulldogs have no trouble scoring as they rank 36th in the nation in offense with 79.4 points per game. Gonzaga is excellent from the perimeter, shooting an impressive .382 from three-point range. The Bulldogs have a distinct advantage on the boards in this matchup. They are the 24th-ranked rebounding team in Division I, averaging 40.7 per game, while the Tigers rank 210th in the nation with 35.7 per game. Turning to the defensive side, teams routinely struggle to score points against the Bulldogs, who allow only 65.4 points per game. The Bulldogs have really locked down opponents on the defensive end, ranking 25th in the country with a .395 opponent field-goal percentage. Pacific has a habit of getting in foul trouble (22.5 fouls per game), so expect the Bulldogs to get a number of opportunities from the free throw line.
Over on the other bench, the Tigers have records of 12-10 ATS and 7-17 SU. During the last 10 games, they averaged 77.7 PPG, above their 69.5 PPG season average. The Pacific defense has allowed an average of 63.1 points per game during the last 10 games, lower than their season average of 70.8.
In their previous meeting this season, Gonzaga beat Pacific, bringing its SU record to 6-0 over Pacific in their most recent games. At 3-3, they are even ATS. Gonzaga had the advantage in three key areas (field goals, rebounds, and three-pointers) once over the last five matchups. Pacific has never had the edge in all three categories.
For updated lines, check out BTB’s College Basketball Odds.
Predictions: SU Winner – Gonz, ATS Winner – Gonz
Gonzaga holds a 12-2 SU record against the West Coast Conference this season, while Pacific has a subpar 5-9 SU record against the conference.
Pacific scores an average of just 69.5 points per game (ranked 198th). Gonzaga ranks 34th in points allowed, giving up 65.4 points per game.
Pacific scores just 66.3 points per away game (ranked 188th). Gonzaga ranks 43rd in points allowed at home, giving up 63.2 points.
Ranked 12th, the Gonzaga Bulldogs have an offensive rating of 116.9. The Pacific Tigers rank 199th with a defensive rating of just 104.3.
The Pacific Tigers average 68.3 possessions per game and 1.018 points per possession. The Gonzaga Bulldogs earn fewer possessions with 67.9, but they score more points with 1.169.
Gonzaga has the 21st-ranked average effective field goal percentage at 55.3%. Pacific is an underachieving 1-5 when opponents have a similar or higher effective field goal percentage.
Gonzaga ranks 82nd in the nation with an assist-to-turnover ratio of 1.22. Pacific is ranked lower at 235th with an A/TO of .96.
Pacific ranks 244th in offensive rebounds, while Gonzaga ranks at fifth in defensive rebounds.
Gonzaga has forced an average turnover percentage of 15.1% this season. Pacific has a losing 5-10 record when its TO% is 15.1% or higher.
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