NCAA Tournament: Gonzaga vs. Fairleigh Dickinson fearless prediction and game preview.
Date: Thursday, March 21
Game Time: 7:27 ET
Venue: Vivint Smart Home Arena, Salt Lake City, UT
All You Really Need To Know About Gonzaga (30-3)
(WCC), NCAA NET Rank: 2. West 1-seed
Yeah, the Bulldogs are that good, and yeah, as always, they’re the UCF football of college basketball with a whole slew of easy wins to go along with a few resumé builders. They dropped Duke and Washington early on in the season, but they also lost to Tennessee and North Carolina. And that’s the problem – the schedule was basically over on December 15th.
Rui Hachimura and Brandon Clarke lead a high-octane team with excellent size, lots of scoring, and lots of options inside and out. Gonzaga leads the nation in scoring partly because they’re so, so good at moving the ball around, running the floor, and scoring in bunches.
How will the Zags lose? It’ll take a team that can win the assist battle, and if someone can control the tempo, that would be great, too.
All You Really Need To Know About Fairleigh Dickinson (21-13)
(Northeast), NCAA NET Rank: 203. West 16-seed
It took a brilliant second half to overcome a rough first 20 minutes to get by Prairie View A&M, but the Knights found the toughness to get by.
The Panthers were out of their minds shooting threes in the first half – they really, really weren’t that good all year from outside – but FDU managed to roar back with 48 second half points helped by 33 from Darnell Edge and 22 from Jahlil Jenkins.
Gonzaga isn’t Prairie View A&M, but this is a fun, exciting FDU team that’s just good enough from the outside to make this interesting. The Knights don’t take a whole lot of threes, but they hit them. They have to hit them and keep on firing away to stick around.
What’s Going To Happen
FDU will be plucky for a half, but it’s about to get destroyed on the boards and in the interior. Gonzaga is way too strong at attacking the guards and forcing mistakes – Jenkins and Edge are about to be in for a long night.
There will be a mid-game run by the Knights just to make Gonzaga try a wee bit, and then it’ll all open up late. FDU will turn the ball over way too often.
Fearless Prediction & Line
Gonzaga 92, Fairleigh Dickinson 60
Line: Gonzaga -26.5, o/u: 152.5
ATS Confidence: 2
5: Watching games by Vegas pool working on fruity drink No. 3
1: Watching game online while doing TPS reports in your cubicle