clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

NCAA Tournament West region preview: One favorite, one sleeper, one dark horse

We run down through the full list of odds for each team in the West region and pick our favorite, sleeper, and dark horse to make the Final Four.

Gonzaga Bulldogs guard Jalen Suggs poses with the most valuable player trophy after the West Coast Conference Tournament championship game against the BYU Cougars at Orleans Arena.  Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The NCAA Tournament field of 68 is set, and oddsmakers have been hard at work figuring out which four teams will be the last ones standing in Indianapolis a few short weeks from now.

With two days left until the tournament kicks off, we’re here to help you place your bets with a favorite, a sleeper and a dark horse team from each region of the bracket. For the West region though, you might be better off saving your money or throwing it all on the favorite.

Favorite: Gonzaga

The Gonzaga Bulldogs are the only undefeated team in the nation and are the overwhelming favorite to win the national title. They come into the field with -230 odds to make the Final Four, one of only two teams with an upside down price to get to Semifinal Saturday.

The Zags sit at 26-0 and really haven't been as much as tested by an opponent since the opening weeks of the season, with a mild scare against BYU in the WCC title game. KenPom says they’re the best team in America with the best offense as well, and they also boast a top-10 defense. The only team in this region fit to give them a challenge is Iowa, who the Bulldogs beat by double-digits back in December.

Sleeper: Iowa

All the 15 other teams not named Gonzaga are sleepers in this region. The Iowa Hawkeyes are solid, and in any other part of the bracket could have a legitimate shot in making it to the Final Four. They have +400 odds to get there, but odds to make it to the Elite Eight are just +100. That’s how much Gonzaga hangs over this bracket.

KenPom has them listed as the fifth-best team in the country with the second-best offense, behind the Zags. Senior Luka Garza has been a one-man wrecking crew, scoring 24 points per game and nearly nine rebounds per contest too.

Dark Horse: UC Santa Barbra

The UC Santa Barbra Gauchos have only lost two games all season, and come into the NCAA Tournament on a five-game winning streak and have won 18 of their last 19. The team’s only loss in that span came on the far end of a back-to-back against UC-Riverside.

They're a No. 12 seed and would have to knock off Creighton and the winner of the Virginia-Ohio game before a potential meeting with the best team in the land. But if they stay hot, who knows what can happen.

Odds to reach 2021 Elite Eight, Final Four — West region

Team Make Elite 8 Miss Elite 8 Make Final 4
Team Make Elite 8 Miss Elite 8 Make Final 4
Gonzaga -305 +230 -230
Iowa +100 -124 +400
Kansas +330 -455 +650
Oklahoma +1500 -10000 +1000
USC +600 -910 +1000
Virginia +675 -1115 +1000
Creighton +600 -1000 +1150
Missouri +3000 -10000 +2500
Oregon +800 -2000 +2500
Drake +4000 -10000 +3000
Wichita State +3000 -10000 +3000
VCU +1500 -10000 +4000
Ohio +4000 -10000 +6000
UC Santa Barbara +3500 -10000 +6000
Eastern Washington +5000 -10000 +10000
Grand Canyon +5000 -10000 +12000
Appalachian State +5000 -10000 +15000
Norfolk State +5000 -10000 +15000

If you or someone you know has a gambling problem, crisis counseling and referral services can be accessed by calling 1-800-GAMBLER (1-800-426-2537) (IL). Gambling problem? Call 1-800-GAMBLER (NJ/WV/PA/MI), 1-800-9-WITH-IT (IN), 1-800-522-4700 (NH/CO), 1-800-BETS OFF (IA), 1-888-532-3500 (VA) or call/text TN REDLINE 1-800-889-9789 (TN). 21+ (18+ NH). CO/IL/IN/IA/NH/NJ/PA/TN/VA/WV/MI only. Eligibility restrictions apply. See draftkings.com/sportsbook for full terms and conditions.