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NCAAB Handicapping: Gonzaga vs. Utah (Dec. 31)

NCAA Basketball Sports Betting Gonzaga @ Utah

Gonzaga doesn’t know what hit them. Certainly it wasn’t the biggest shocker in the world that they lost in Seattle to the U-Conn Huskies, who are loaded. Following that game, however, they lost to Portland State, shooting just 43%. With the loss on December 14 at Arizona, that means the ‘Zags have lost three of their last four games.  

BetUS NCAA Basketball Betting Odds: GONZAGA -6.5

Here are some of the NCAA basketball sports betting trends as they relate to this matchup:

* GONZ has won 16 of its last 21 games SU
* GONZ has covered two of its last six road games
* GONZ has won five of its last seven road games SU
* GONZ has played four of its last six road games UNDER the total
* UTAH has covered one of its last six games
* UTAH has lost four of its last six games SU
* UTAH has played four of its last five games UNDER the total
* UTAH has covered four of its last six home games
* UTAH has won five of its last six home games SU
* UTAH has played four of its last six home games OVER the total

The Utes (no, not the “youths” as was intended by Joe Pesci’s character in “My Cousin Vinny”) have faltered lately when stepping up in level of competition, but earlier in the season, there was the win over Oregon, a team that likes to accelerate the pace, at the Huntsman Center, as they rang up 95 points.

Gonzaga is not getting everything it wanted to out of Austin Daye, the slender 6’11” forward who was just 5 for 15 from the field against Portland State. Normally sure-handed Jeremy Pargo has turned the ball over 17 times in his last four contests. This team has had eight days to think about these defeats, which helps the ‘Zags against this Utah team, which is not proficient from beyond the three-point arc (6.4 per game). The Utes have won only one game this season when they didn’t shoot at least 50% from the floor, and that was the last triumph over Cal-Irvine, who themselves shot only 36%.

No one is saying Gonzaga is going to get cold like that, but Luke Nevill (16.9 ppg) is the guy who makes the Utah offense go, and he’ll challenge Josh Heytvelt’s inside defense, for sure. Everybody in the Bulldogs’ lineup hits at least one three-pointer per game, but Utah won’t be suffering any size disadvantages to this guard-centric team. They shoot free throws better, and have gotten 23 combined points a game from reserves Tyler Kepkay, Carlon Brown and Jordan Cyphers, who will help this team match up with the ‘Zags backcourt. We’re taking the points at home with Utah, the 6.5-point underdog in the BetUS NCAA basketball betting odds.

Our PLAY: UTAH +6.5 ***


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