View Full Version : Time to get tough and execute!

03-25-2009, 02:36 PM
Greetings to all from Roma!

A few thoughts a little more than two days from tipoff in what is probably the most important game the Gonzaga program has had since it started playing important games:

1) As regards the team's play, toughness and execution are absolutely necessary for victory. Boxing out, staying disciplined on defense, taking care of the basketball, finishing layups and putbacks, dunking rather than finessing, squaring up on outside shots, crisp passes: these are the ingredients for Gonzaga victory Friday night. Without this toughness and execution, we cannot win. While we are talented, we cannot cruise on talent, the way a USC or Memphis can.

2) As regards individual play:
a) Josh Heytvelt: This is his game. No second thoughts about it. If he is up to Hansborough, there's a good chance we win. If he shrinks, we lose. I don't think I risk understatement when I say that this is the definitive game of Josh Heytvelt's Gonzaga career. I am very confident that he will show up to play and to dominate Hansborough.
b) Austin Daye: It will be very important for him to remain as composed and focused as possible. He needs to be confident in his shot and not afraid to take it. He needs to REBOUND and BOX OUT!
c) Matt Bouldin/Jeremy Pargo: Keep doing what you're doing.
d) Meech Goodson: More lock-down defense and killer-instinct finishing. His 15 minutes may be the key to neutralizing Lawson, as they were for Mendez-Valdez.
e) Micah Downs: Keep doing what you're doing. Like Daye, Downs also needs to be confident in his shot and not afraid to take it. Keep on REBOUNDING and BOXING OUT!
f) Steven Gray: Don't be afraid to shoot. Keep finishing inside. DEFENSE, DEFENSE, DEFENSE!
g) Ira Brown: Make Tyler Hansborough's life miserable inside with 8-10 tough minutes.

I have a great feeling about this team and about this game. I love the way we move the ball on offense when we're clicking and playing with confidence and poise. I have every confidence that Coach Few and Co. will have our boys prepared to play their best against UNC on Friday.

Before the game, I will be making a visit to the tomb of St. Aloysius at the Chiesa di Sant'Ignazio here in Rome. I will ask him there to intercede for us, that he may be glorified by Gonzaga victories! St. Al, pray for us!

03-25-2009, 02:55 PM
We may need to insert or add Foster to the mix.

He gives us rebounding and the ability to change UNC's shots inside
and the possibility of a few blocks and 5 extra fouls.

I have a feeling Daye and Downs will come up huge for us.

Josh and Matt just need to recall their stellar play last time.

Hoops Junkie
03-25-2009, 03:06 PM
This game will be a Peter Principle type game for the ZAGS. The talent level
is pretty similar for both teams. If anything I am not sure that GU may have more weapons.
Is 16 as high as FEW can take a team ? It should be a great contest. I for one am a little tired of Carolina. JH can take Hansbrough. Go ZAGS

03-25-2009, 03:46 PM
I say mental toughness is more important in this one than physical toughness. We're not facing Blake Griffin or Rough n stuff Purdue, but we are facing a big inimidation factor and frankly the Zags have been inconsistent at best when the chips were down this year. At Tennessee they stepped up when a game they had won went to overtime. Against UConn they folded in the final minutes. Against WKU they roared to life, nearly choked, then got saved. Against Memphis they got their doors blown off out of the gate and had no fight until it was way too late. Against WSU they came out storming in the 2nd half and went all UNC & Memphis on the Cougs. Against Portland State they came out flat and let a lesser opponent control the game and never adjusted to stop the hot hand. No idea what happened at Utah cuz I couldn't see the game. Against the WCC Tourney field they left no doubt who the best team in the league was and looked like the globetrotters. So what's it gonna be against UNC? Are the Zags gonna bring their A-game and seize this opportunity and play SMART basketball when UNC makes its run or will they collapse under a mountain of doubt and despair? Guess we'll see.

03-25-2009, 06:02 PM
will foster - Make hasbrough's life hard with 5 SOLID fouls :D