The No. 2-seeded Saint Mary’s Gaels (25-6) and No. 1 Gonzaga Bulldogs (25-3) clash in a familiar setting Tuesday. For the 12th time in the last 19 years, the Gaels and Bulldogs will square off in the championship game of the West Coast Conference Tournament. Tip-off at Orleans Arena in Las Vegas is slated for 9 p.m. ET. Below, we look at the Saint Mary’s vs. Gonzaga odds and lines, and make our expert college basketball picks, predictions and bets.
Saint Mary’s battled its way to a tense 75-72 win over Santa Clara Monday, with SMC holding the Broncos to a 40.6% mark from the floor. The WCC’s top defense (59.8 points per game) has held foes to a 40.0% mark while winning each of its last five games.
The Gaels went 12-3 across 15 regular-season WCC games; they are ranked No. 17 in the Ferris Mowers Coaches Poll powered by USA TODAY Sports.
Gonzaga went 13-1 in league play to win the WCC regular-season title and a bye into its Monday semifinal slot where it beat San Francisco 81-71. The top-ranked team in the nation split two games with Saint Mary’s during the regular season. In their previous 11 title-game tilts, the Bulldogs lead 7-4.
Saint Mary’s vs. Gonzaga odds, spread and lines
Odds provided by Tipico Sportsbook; access USA TODAY Sports Scores and Sports Betting Odds hub for a full list. Lines last updated Tuesday at 1:20 p.m. ET.
Money line: Saint Mary’s +600 (bet $100 to win $600) | Gonzaga -1000 (bet $1000 to win $100)
Against the spread (ATS): Saint Mary’s +12.5 (-108) | Gonzaga -12.5 (-112)
Over/Under (O/U): 140.5 (O: -110 | U: -110)
Saint Mary’s vs. Gonzaga odds, lines, picks and predictions
Gonzaga 71, Saint Mary’s 68
Figure on some pure fun in this one, with neither side needing a win to advance to the big dance next week. Still, the Gaels have the most to gain in the eyes of the selection committee.
Saint Mary’s has had some exceptional defensive performances of late, and the Gaels have a better chance of winning this bracket battle than is offered by the odds.
With a 6-to-1 payoff, SAINT MARY’S (+600) is worth a shot.
Against the spread
Saint Mary’s plays at one of the slower paces in Division I and Gonzaga one of the quickest. During the regular season against the three fastest teams in the WCC (Gonzaga, Santa Clara, Pepperdine), SMC went a combined 4-1-1 ATS.
Consider a partial-unit play on SAINT MARY’S +12.5 (-108).
Across the last five GU-SMC meetings, the Under has gone 4-1.
This total is a low one (4 points lower than in their last meeting), but with the solid ballhandling and defensive rebounding in this match-up, there is a sliver of value in the UNDER 140.5 (-110) in Tuesday’s title game.
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