When No. 1 Gonzaga and No. 16 Virginia meet on CBS at 4 p.m. ET Saturday in Fort Price, Texas, they may have to fulfill within the center in additional methods than one. The Cavaliers (4-1) are thought to be one of many high defensive groups within the nation, whereas the Bulldogs (6-0) have confirmed to be an offensive juggernaut.
One thing must give in what must be some of the intriguing nonconference video games of the 2020-21 school basketball season. Merely getting the sport in shall be a aid for each applications as they’ve each handled COVID-19 points in the course of the starting of the season. The Cavaliers have been presupposed to play Michigan State and Villanova however noticed these video games canceled. Gonzaga was presupposed to play No. 2 Baylor in a significant showdown on Dec. 5 earlier than that sport was additionally canceled simply two hours earlier than tip.
However as has been confirmed a number of instances this yr in each school basketball and soccer, scheduling may be competed on the fly when each side are motivated to bolster their schedules. That was clearly the case right here as two of the nation’s high applications discovered a date — and a venue — on brief discover for what shall be a important sport for each.
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- When: Saturday, 4 p.m. ET
- The place: Dickies Enviornment in Fort Price, Texas
- TV: CBS | Reside stream: CBSSports.com, CBS Sports activities App (Free)
- OTT: CBS Sports activities App (Apple TV, Roku, Fireplace TV, Chromecast)
Virginia: After going 18 days between video games as a result of COVID-19 points, the Cavaliers returned to the court docket Tuesday and dealt with William & Mary 76-40. It was the fourth time in 5 video games this season that Virginia has surpassed the 70-point mark after doing so simply twice final season. However protection continues to be the hallmark of this system. Kent State’s 64 factors on Dec. 4 are essentially the most the Cavaliers have surrendered this yr, and that sport went to additional time. San Francisco’s 61-60 upset of Virginia on Nov. 27 was attributable, largely, to the truth that the Dons hit 13-of-28 3-pointers, which is extra of an aberration than the norm for groups taking part in in opposition to Virginia. However UVA can even must be on its sport offensively to have an opportunity in opposition to Gonzaga. Fortunately for coach Tony Bennett, this can be a significantly better 3-point taking pictures staff than final yr’s offensively challenged group. Main scorers Sam Hauser, Jay Huff and Trey Murphy are every taking pictures higher than 43% from deep.
Gonzaga: The final time Virginia and Gonzaga performed, was again within the 2006-07 season when the Cavaliers gained 108-87. Virginia has not scored that many factors in a sport since. However Gonzaga surpassed that mark twice final season alone, and this group is perhaps even higher offensively than final yr’s staff. The Bulldogs hung 102 on Kansas in a season-opening win, and their season low via six video games is 87 factors in opposition to a West Virginia staff that’s anticipated to be elite defensively. Dynamic wing Corey Kispert and massive man Drew Timme are main the way in which by averaging greater than 20 factors apiece. However the Bulldogs have a deep supporting forged, led by freshman guard Jalen Suggs, who has appeared like 2021 NBA lottery decide in opposition to a strong group of nonconference opponents so far.
Recreation prediction, decide
This would be the hardest protection Gonzaga has confronted but. However it is going to take a herculean effort from the Cavaliers to carry Gonzaga beneath 80 factors. That is most likely what they should do in an effort to have a shot. However the Bulldogs have already confirmed what they will do in opposition to top-notch opponents, and there is no motive to imagine they are going to fall flat right here. Prediction: Gonzaga 85, Virginia 76
So who wins each school basketball sport at present? And which underdogs pull off gorgeous upsets? Go to SportsLine now to get picks for each sport, all from the unbiased mannequin that simulates each sport 10,000 instances, and discover out.