NCAA Tournament Final: Gonzaga vs Baylor 4/5/21 College Basketball Picks, Odds, Predictions
2021-04-05 21:00:00 EDT
The Gonzaga Bulldogs take on the Baylor Bears Monday in the NCAA Tournament Championship Game in college basketball action from Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis.
Coming into this NCAA Tournament Championship Game, Baylor sits at 27-2 overall. The Bears posted a big win over Houston in Final Four activity on Saturday. As for Gonzaga, they’re sitting at an undefeated 31-0. The Bulldogs pulled out a close overtime win over UCLA on Saturday. Check back all season long for free college basketball picks at Sports Chat Place.
Baylor took a tough loss to Oklahoma State back in the conference tourney, but since then they’ve been great in five straight wins. The Bears have dispatched Hartford, Wisconsin, Villanova, Arkansas and Houston in the NCAA Tournament thus far, and none of the games was decided by fewer than nine points.
In Saturday’s 78-59 victory over Houston, Baylor had a commanding 45-20 lead at the break and cruised from there. Leading the scoring for the Bears was Jared Butler with 17 points, five rebounds, four assists and two steals. Matthew Mayer chipped in 12 bench points as well.
Over on the Gonzaga side, there hasn’t been much to complain about all season. The Bulldogs steamrolled their way through the schedule, and the “close” games were few in number. In the NCAA Tournament, Gonzaga took out Norfolk State, Oklahoma, Creighton and USC before a tight overtime victory over UCLA on Saturday.
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In Saturday’s Final Four matchup versus UCLA, Gonzaga had a slim 45-44 lead at the break and eventually had to go to overtime. The Bulldogs posted a 12-9 edge in the extra period to move on to the championship. Leading the way for Gonzaga was Drew Timme with 25 points, four rebounds and two assists.
The Bulldogs are 4-1 ATS in their last five overall and 4-1-1 ATS in their last six after an ATS loss. Gonzaga is 4-1 ATS in their last five neutral-site games and 19-9-1 ATS in their last 29 Monday games.
Meanwhile, the Bears are 4-0 ATS in their last four overall and 4-0 ATS in their last four after a straight-up win. Baylor is 4-0 ATS in their last four neutral-site games and 6-2 ATS in their last eight as an underdog.
PICK: I’m likely going to take a stab on Baylor in this one. The Bears have been very impressive since their conference tournament loss to Oklahoma State, and haven’t been in a ton of trouble during their NCAA tourney run. Baylor stomped Houston in most statistical categories on Saturday, from shooting percentage (52.7 to 38.2) to assists (23 to 10) to rebounding (33 to 28). It seems like the Bears are firing on all cylinders right now, and I like them to keep it going in this championship matchup. Gonzaga looked vulnerable in their Final Four outing, so this should be another great game.