The 2021 NCAA Championship Final Four is just around the corner with the national semifinals set for Saturday, April 3, so here’s the best UCLA Bruins vs. Gonzaga Bulldogs betting pick along with the latest odds on DraftKings Sportsbook.
The No. 1 Gonzaga opened as a massive 14-point fave with a total of 145.0 points, while the No. 11 UCLA is a +725 moneyline dog at the moment. The Zags have won two of their previous three encounters with the Bruins, but they haven’t met since 2015.
The Bruins shocked Michigan to reach the Final Four
Frankly, nobody expected the Bruins to get this far, but they’ve played at a very high level since an 86-80 overtime victory over Michigan State in the First Four. As the No. 11 seed in the East Region, UCLA was listed as an underdog in three of its previous four outings including the Elite Eight showdown against the No. 1 Michigan Wolverines.
After an 88-78 overtime victory over the No. 2 Alabama in the Sweet 16, the Bruins fought bravely as 6.5-point dogs last Tuesday to pull off a 51-49 victory over the Wolverines. Sophomore guard Johnny Juzang went off for 28 points, while the Bruins held Michigan to just 39.2% shooting from the field and 27.3% from beyond the arc.
The Bruins lean heavily on their starting five, while Johnny Juzang (15.5 PPG, 4.0 RPG) and another sophomore guard Jaime Jaquez (12.1 PPG, 6.1 RPG) are key players in this UCLA team that scores 116.2 points per 100 possessions (13th in the country). On the other side of the ball, UCLA allows 94.2 points per 100 possessions (45th) on 43.5% shooting from the field (183rd).
The Bulldogs smashed everyone on their way to the Final Four
The Gonzaga Bulldogs enter the Final Four undefeated, recording their 30th victory of the season this past Tuesday. They routed the No. 6 USC Trojans in the Elite Eight, 85-66, easily covering an 8.5-point spread.
Sophomore forward Drew Timme tortured USC for 23 points, while freshman guard Jalen Suggs went off for 18 points, 10 rebounds, and eight assists. The Zags stormed the front and built a 19-point lead by the end of the first half, finishing the clash with 50.0% shooting from the field.
Gonzaga owns the best offensive rating in the country, pouring in 126.8 points per 100 possessions. The Zags also lead the nation in field goal percentage (55.1%) while ranking 42nd in 3-point percentage (37.1%) and second in assists per game (18.6). Mark Few’s boys allow 88.0 points per 100 possessions (5th) on 41.6% shooting from the field (73rd) and 31.9% from downtown (82nd).
- 1-4 ATS in the last five games against Gonzaga
- 5-1 ATS in the last six games overall
The Bruins have knocked off a couple of heavyweights in Alabama and Michigan. They’ve played above all expectations, but outlasting Gonzaga would be a completely different task. The Zags look unstoppable and own plenty of offensive weapons, so I’m backing them to grab another comfortable victory.
Now, I have to say that the trick is the Bulldogs won’t care if they win by five, nine, or 13 points. They are a much better team than UCLA, and I hope they’ll show up Saturday in the biggest game of the season so far.
Pick: Take Gonzaga -14.0 at -110
The Zags play at the sixth-fastest pace in the country, averaging a whopping 74.2 possessions per 40 minutes. Gonzaga is not just a terrific offensive team, and the Zags love to play aggressive defense and look for easy baskets in transition.
UCLA averages only 64.0 possessions per 40 minutes (338th in the nation). The Bruins will try their best to slow down things, but I don’t think that’s going to happen against this Gonzaga team. The Zags have scored 83 or more points in each of their previous five outings.
Pick: Go over 145.0 points at -110
For Brian Blessing’s thoughts on our ATS YouTube page, watch this video: