College Basketball: Men’s Championship XAV vs. GONZ
West Region Elite 8
#11 Xavier Musketeers (24-13) at #1 Gonzaga Bulldogs (35-1)
March 25, 2017- 6:09 PM ET (TV TBS) SAP Center at San Jose, San Jose, CA
The best weekend in college basketball continues on Saturday afternoon with the start of the Elite 8 as we go out West for a clash between the Cinderella No. 11 Xavier Musketeers and No. 1 Gonzaga Bulldogs in a matchup that has the following betting lines from our best sportsbooks;
Best Musketeers Lines: BetOnline Spread (+8) ML +330
Best Bulldogs Lines: MyBookie Spread (-8) ML -410
Over/Under: 5Dimes 145.0
The SAP Center at San Jose will be the site for two teams seeking to punch their ticket to next weekend’s Final Four and as we take a quick peek at the spread for sportsbetting purposes for our U.S. players, the Bulldogs as expected are favored with a spread of (-8) points.
And for Xavier and Gonzaga, this game will have special meaning with a win as it will mean their first trip to the Final Four.
Not given much hope heading into the NCAA Tournament, the Musketeers (24-13) earned their way to the Elite 8 with impressive wins over No. 6 seed Maryland, No. 3 seed Florida State and No. 2 seed Arizona, who was my pick to be in the championship.
Xavier is the lowest remaining seed left in the tourney and know they will have yet another challenge ahead of them as the new Cinderella.
For Gonzaga (35-1), a team that knows all too well what it means to be a Cinderella, they have asserted themselves over the years as a “true” power but have yet to taste a Final Four. The Zags will be making their 19th consecutive tournament appearance but have failed to make it out of the Elite 8 twice; 1999 and 2015.
With 7-foot, 300-pound center, Przemek Karnowski at the helm in the middle for the Bulldogs, we can expect him to raise havoc on the smaller Musketeers along with athletic 6-9 forward Johnathan Williams.
Xavier has made two previous Elite 8 appearances with their last being in 2008 in a defeat to UCLA. The winner will face either Oregon or Kansas which will follow.
The energy and emotion will be through the roof for both these teams with a Final Four hanging in the balance. And for betting purposes from our best sportsbooks, MyBookie is favoring GONZ (-8) points over XAV with an over/under of 145.0 total game points scored.
I would be hard-pressed to go against the Zags in a straight-up win, but will favor the Musketeers PLUS the points (+8) to cover the spread as my sportsbetting pick in what will be an entertaining game.