Photo: flickr Writer: Eric Daniel
The Gonzaga Bulldogs have been living up to their expectations so far this season standing 7-0 overall with some of their better wins coming against teams like San Diego State, Florida, and Iowa State. In their last outing Gonzaga blew past an overmatched Mississippi Valley picking up the win by a final of 97-63. Gonzaga is a lock to make the NCAA tournament this season, especially with the strong start they’ve put together, but winning the WCC will be a challenge with Saint Mary’s also looking elite. Gonzaga has been getting the job done on both ends ranking 25th in the nation in scoring average and 65th in total defense.
Things are getting a bit tough for Arizona who’s expected to have only 7 scholarship players available in this matchup today. Even though Arizona only has 7 guys, they’re still a very talented group playing behind a strong home court advantage, which will make things tough on the Bulldogs. Arizona has had success this season standing 6-1 overall with their best win coming against Michigan State in their opener. In their last outing the Wildcats were able to hold on to their early lead as Arizona coasted to the 85-63 win over a decent Texas Southern squad. The Wildcats have leaned on their defense for success and on offense Lauri Markkanen leads the team averaging 18.3 points per game.
Arizona has been working with a short bench all season and that doesn’t figure to be a huge factor in this one unless the Wildcats have to deal with foul trouble or another injury. Gonzaga will push for the win in the tough environment, but getting the Wildcats with the points at home feels like the safer bet.
Arizona +5 -110