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Our favorites, sleepers, and dark horses in the 2021 WCC Conference basketball tournament

We take a look at one favorite, one sleeper and don’t even try and pick a dark horse candidate to win the 2021 WCC Conference men's basketball tournament.

Julian Strawther of the Gonzaga Bulldogs warms up prior to the game against the Loyola Marymount Lions at McCarthey Athletic Center on February 27, 2021 in Spokane, Washington. Gonzaga defeats Loyola Marymount 86-69. Photo by William Mancebo/Getty Images

Full disclosure: We’re previewing all these tournaments and trying to find potential matchups or teams to keep an eye on that could surprise and steal a bid to the 2021 NCAA Tournament. We hope to inform you so you find good games to watch during these conference tournament weeks, and know a bit more about the teams involved. And maybe find a potential upset or two!

That ain’t happening here.

Unless the NCAA bans the Zags from competing, there’s a team-wide COVID-19 issue, or the Zags bus gets lost on the way to the Orleans Arena this thing is already over.

Here’s the bracket for the WCC Conference Tournament with TV listings, dates and times.

Favorite: Gonzaga

They’re gonna win. And then they’ll probably win the NCAA Tournament too. It is absurd how much better they are than everyone else, and they’ll put themselves in the conversation with the best college basketball teams ever if they win the next eight games as easily as they did the first 24.

Sleeper: BYU

They only lost to Gonzaga by 11 at home this season, and that means they should probably be ranked in the AP Poll right now. The Coogs are 19-5, safely in the at-large field, and likely wearing white jerseys in the NCAA Tournament first round. Head coach Mark Pope has done a wonderful job in his second season building a program that can play inside-out as well as defend. Alex Barcello is a bucket and leads a group of quality upperclassmen. They’re very good and have been overlooked nationally most of this season. But they’re not winning here.

Dark Horse: Multiple players are declared ineligible by the NCAA before tip-off or Zags forget they have a game

If you’re going to this event, enjoy your host venue in The Orleans. There’s a bowling alley right in the casino, and Alder & Birch is an underrated steakhouse. You’ll have a great time. But don’t expect anything besides the Zags cutting down the nets for the eighth time in nine years.