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This is going to be a thriller between those who many already thought were the top two programs in the country! Baylor are strong, but Gonzaga have too many weapons in their favour.
Gonzaga def. Baylor ()
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|Gonzaga Bulldogs vs Baylor Bears Information|
|What||Gonzaga vs Baylor|
|Where||Lucas Oil Stadium, Indianapolis, Indiana|
|When||9:20 PM EST, April 5th, 2021|
|How to Watch||CBS|
|Mark Few||Head Coach||Scott Drew|
|31-0 (15-0, 1st in WCC)||Standing||27-2 (13-1, 1st in Big 12)|
|122.2 (1st of 347)||Off Rtg||118.6 (2nd of 347)|
|92.3 (17th of 347)||Def Rtg||93.5 (27th of 347)|
Leaders (Per Game)
|D. Timme (19.2)||PPG||J. Butler (16.6)|
|D. Timme (7.1)||RPG||M. Vital (6.5)|
|J. Suggs (4.6)||APG||D. Mitchell (5.5)|
|J. Suggs (1.9)||SPG||J. Butler (2.0)|
|D. Timme (0.7)||BPG||M. Vital (0.9)|
|D. Timme (.654)/D. Timme (7.5)||FG%/FGM||F. Thamba (.588)/J. Butler (5.9)|
|C. Kispert (.445)/C. Kispert (2.9)||3P%/3PM||D, Mitchell (.453)/J. Butler (2.5)|
The Gonzaga Bulldogs are one match away from a perfect season. It was close against UCLA, but they were able to win it with a buzzer-beating effort from Jalen Suggs.
The Bulldogs will need to manage an excellent offence and a perimeter group that is excellent at limiting the three-point shot. The benefit to head coach Mark Few is that his starting lineup has a scorer at every position.
Gonzaga have been on fire through March Madness, shooting 54.6% from the field and 39.1% from the field. Baylor’s three-point shooting is a real threat, but Gonzaga has been holding opponents to 31.5% from three. If Gonzaga can’t close out on shooters, their chance at a perfect season could disappear.
The Bears have been cruising through the NCAA Tournament. After easily dispatching a difficult Houston team, Baylor should be entering this matchup more confident than ever.
Baylor have only improved through each game in the NCAA Tournament, as they continue to move the ball and find excellent shots for their high-powered offence. Their three-point defence is marvellous, as they’ve held their tournament opponents to an average of 27.8% shooting.
Scott Drew’s side need to find shots against a game Gonzaga defence. Their guards generate most of Baylor’s offence. If the Baylor backcourt struggle to find their rhythm early, their early hole may be too great to recover from.
TWO. WAY. MADNESS.
✅ Jalen Suggs block
✅ Drew Timme dunk pic.twitter.com/o7AGVns8wz
— CBS Sports (@CBSSports) April 4, 2021
Sophomore forward Drew Timme has been leading the Bulldogs throughout the tournament and it’ll be his opportunity to make his mark in the Final.
Through the 2021 NCAA Tournament, Timme has averaged 22.0 points, 6.8 rebounds, and 3.8 assists on 64.2% shooting from the field. His finishing ability has been incredibly valuable to the Bulldogs, as he’s been the perfect drop-off partner for their bevy of perimeter creators.
Baylor has been holding their opponents to 49% from the two-point range, so their ability to stop Timme in the paint is in question. Not that that’d be an issue for the sophomore forward.
Davion Mitchell put the exclamation point on @BaylorMBB‘s first half. ? #FinalFour pic.twitter.com/XoQfYbRkW2
— NCAA March Madness (@marchmadness) April 3, 2021
The Bears offence starts with guard Davion Mitchell. Not just with how he is shooting the ball, but also with how he deals with the Gonzaga guards at the point of attack.
Mitchell is having a solid tournament, averaging 13.2 points, 6.0 assists, and 1.8 steals per game on 52.8% from the field. He’s only committing 1.4 turnovers per game, showing his steadiness and reliability.
Mitchell only shot four of 11 in his last match against Houston, and he’ll need to improve on that to beat Gonzaga. The Bulldogs have too many offensive options compared to Baylor, so Mitchell will need to show off his jumper as much as he will create for others.
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Christian Jope is a writer, social media strategist, and data analyst. A Queen’s University Alumni, Christian is an author and social media strategist with Raptors Cage, while also working closely with MLSE and Canada Basketball through community-driven events.
Email: [email protected]More info on Christian Jope
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