PDA

View Full Version : Thoughts on the coming season



Russell Bevan
07-09-2009, 12:06 PM
Friends,

As the moderator who posts the least and who probably has the most extreme opinions on our team I wanted to share a few thoughts on the coming season.

Out with the old. We lost a lot of talent and I couldn't be happier. Next year would have been Austin's victory lap and I didn't want to see him set up his NBA career while we tried to make it to the Final Four. Now our younger players will have a chance to develop their games and secure our future for the next several years. Our guards will be able to play to their considerable strengths and guards dominate college basket ball. It would have killed me to make a deep run and have one athletic 4 shut down Austin (we witnessed this to many times already) and knock us out because everyone was so used to watching him take the big shots. In the same vein all of last yearís seniors had amazingly inconsistent seasons. Expectations were very high and I donít know that they were mentally and emotionally strong enough to deal with them collectively or as individuals. With six new faces we are going to be young, full of potential and be free of the stress of being a top 10 team.

Last year we got handled on the boards to many times, yet we were great at blocking shots, why because we were thin and out of position, that will not be an issue this year.

Being big. E. Harris is a load folks. This kid is going to dominate in the WCC and make an impact in March. He is playing against a very high level competition and excelling. It will take a while for him to learn the system, but he is going to be a difference maker.

People forget about Sacreís development. Rob came in from Canada, not used to playing our style of hoops and played real minutes on a very good team as a freshman. He has worked very hard to develop his physical skills and is ready to have a major break out season. His basket ball IQ is also much higher than it was when he arrived. He will be a different player than we have seen in the past.

Andy Poling is another potential star. This is his first year being healthy and putting on weight since his sophomore year of HS. He looks like a different person this summer and from all accounts is ready to provide us with major minutes. His skill level and hoops IQ are both off the charts.

We also have Big Will to provide us with minutes and blocked shots and a wild card in Sam Dower who is a tough young man, who I have been told could turn into a rebounding machine. Our bigs are going to lack experience, but we will make up for that with ourÖ.

Guards. Who suffered the most with Austin on the team last year? Matt and Stephen. While Matt might not be the most demonstrative player, when he is on the floor the Zags play at a higher level. Heading into his senior year this is his time to shine and Coach Few loves seniors so look for him to be this yearís key player. Stephen will also be able to take more shots and get into the flow of the game sooner than last year. He will start from day one and he will have a permanent green light. With a healthy hand and two years in the system he should become one of the nationís top SGís. These two young men give us an amazing base to build on.

The little engine that could and his mini me. Goodson is a machine, he runs, talks , plays D, trash talks, plays more D and has no fear, none. Where I think that Pargo second guessed himself at times and could crawl into a shell, Goodson is always moving so fast I donít think that he will ever deal with those issues. How well he learns the system is my biggest concern. He plays with such speed it might take him time to understand where he should be and what he is doing. He does have a couple of great things going for him. One is the steady hands of Matt and Stephen, they are both as cool as cucumbers and he now has Vilarino to push him in practice. I wonder if he has ever played, on a daily basis, against someone who matches up with his amazing physical skills. These guys should tear each other up for the next three years making each other much better for it. Do I expect a ton of turn overs along the way, you bet. Do I expect them to pick off a ton of passes as well, naturally.

Grant Gibbs. I think he becomes the next of our big guard/wings to become a rock in the system. Think of Blake and Bouldin. He is a great compliment to Goodson and Vilarino. It will take some time for him to develop his role in this yearís team, but he should be ready to give us minutes the second we need them. He is the type of smart, hard working, good shooting player that provides a team with a solid foundation.

The Northern invasion. Kong, the stuff of urban legend. Is he already the most advanced scorer in the WCC without even practicing with the team for the first time? Thatís what Iíve been told, but I will wait to see him myself before calling him the next member of the Frahm, Dickau, Morrison and Daye club.

Manny, the human spring. Lock down D and a huge motor. If he can get boards he could demand time.

Kelly is a mystery to me. Does he have the physical maturity to play early on? Everything you read says that he is a scoring machine and I hear he has a little attitude, which I adore in a scorer, but is he ready from day one? TBD.

So what are our primary areas of concern. Two things jump out at me. Turn overs and Team D. It will take all of the young kids a while to develop a cohesive feel for each other on D. We will also lack the shot blocking ability of Josh and Austin.

On the flip side we should rebound much better with Rob eating up space and Harris being a natural rebounder. Between Manny, Sam and Harris someone will step up and make an early impact. I would love to watch these guys go at each other in practice. We will also have elite physical skills. Coach Few will have more of an impact this year than he has in the last several, the staff has a full plate, but they know that and will be ready.

For the Zags to jump back into the top 20 or higher we need:

Someone to step up next to Sacre and help control the boards.

Avoid TOís, maybe have Matt and Stephen have a little more control of the offense than Meech or Vilarino.

8 to 12 points a game from one of the new comers and possibly two of them.

If these things happen we should win 22 games next season, but we will also likely be blown out a time or two, when our kids are overwhelmed. I do expect a dominant run in the WCC where no one will be ready for our young guns and physical tools. In March the round of 16 should be easily within our reach. I am more excited about the coming season than any in recent memory. The program feels clean and is getting a fresh start for the first time since 2004.

bullzag23
07-09-2009, 01:05 PM
While I agree we'll lose shotblocking with Daye's departure, I think defensively that we'll be fine. From what I've read on Manny Arop he sounds like a much better natural defender than Daye was. While Daye could always use his height and length to block a ton of shots, he also let opposing players get a step by him quite often, leading to many of the 'stupid' fouls he was called for. My understanding here is that Manny relies more on his footwork on D which allows him to stay in front of his man better than Austin could. I also feel that we'll be improved on defense at the point of attack with Meech thanks to his incredible quickness.

Given what should be an improved year rebounding wise as well, I don't think too many of us will miss the extra blocked shots. I'll be happy seeing fewer offensive rebounds by the opposing team, those seemed to really keep other teams in games longer than they should have been last year.

JLGutrocks
07-09-2009, 01:06 PM
I'm with you on this. I think the extra rebounds are going to more than make up for the loss of shotblocking, but Sacre, Kong, Foster, Dower, and Olynyk could all make up a lot of the lost ground. The bigger key is how long will it take to become a good defensive team, because that's where losing Daye and Downs hurts the most. Bouldin is bound to improve his game and is versatile enough to play all styles. This team has a lot of talent in the guards and wings, which should bode well for a run and gun style. This team also has a lot more real post depth than last season, and we're past the days of slender rebounding margins. I firmly believe that next year the talent level takes another jump up, which puts a lot of wild cards onto the floor. This team can come together and be dynamite; or could easily blow itself up. I'm thinking there's going to be more dynamite and I'd take on four or five extra wins onto Russell's projection.

You forgot Andy Poling, one of our highest ranked (when he was being recruited) prospects. I believe he makes a HUGE impact this year.

Russell Bevan
07-09-2009, 01:27 PM
Another thing I like about this yearís team is that the three primary leaders, Matt, Rob and Stephen are so grounded and mature for their ages. There is no anointed one at the top of the food chain, just hard working quality young men. They will set a great example to the younger members of the team.

I also agree with the point about Andy, he could be a major stud.

baitcast
07-09-2009, 02:06 PM
OMG I love this talk,my pulse rate is already starting to climb and I,m an old man,this could be dangerous,its to early in the year,got to calm down,I think I hear them,the drums.
Rob in nowhere AZ.

zag67
07-09-2009, 02:38 PM
Also Malastein you forgot Olynyk. But other than that I agree with all of the rest. Now he may redshirt, but he is having good and mediocre games playing for Canada. I think that Meech and GV will give us a super set of speed to play aggresive on the ball defense. Also we have Gibbs and Matt who at 6'5" can give some height to push some teams around and then Steven who has a little more speed to also attack. It may take them some time to gell, but I think that you are going to find this group may end up being one of our best rebounding and defensive set of players that GU ever had. At least I think it is going to be fun to watch.

VinnyZag
07-09-2009, 03:08 PM
Friends,

... free of the stress of being a top 10 team.



This made me chuckle. They will be free from the stress that was caused by winning most of their games.

I appreciate everyone's glass-is-half-full attitude. I hope you're right. But my expectations are somewhat lower. I'd be surprised if next year's Zags are ranked -- at any point -- and I'd be happy if they just make the NCAA tournament, much less win a game.

duper
07-09-2009, 03:20 PM
I agree with most of what is said but just a few adjustments. Many think since we run a very effective system that it is somehow complicated, it is far from it. We run our system very well but we don't trick or suprise anyone. Many high schools in the Spokane area run Gonzaga's system to some degree, as we coaches go to lots of clinics and siminars put on by Few and the staff. Also let Kong develope like the rest of the freshmen, he needs time to adjust like all freshmen. He is a solid D-1 recruit but shouldn't be placed in with our past elite players until he at least scores a basket.

hooter73
07-09-2009, 03:47 PM
I appreciate everyone's glass-is-half-full attitude. I hope you're right. But my expectations are somewhat lower. I'd be surprised if next year's Zags are ranked -- at any point -- and I'd be happy if they just make the NCAA tournament, much less win a game.

From the inexperience stndpoint? I'm honestly courious but only if everybody can use sane and rational arguements.

I'm pretty undecided but lean a bit towards it being a 'rebuilding' year. Sucessful, but it might take time to meld everyone and everything. A LOT of talent alone wont win games.

CDC84
07-09-2009, 03:51 PM
Steven Gray or Bol Kong (or better, both) must develop into a consistent wing scoring threat to help take the heat off of Bouldin. I'm telling you, until another wing proves that he can score every game, defenses will construct their game plan to stop Bouldin, and when that happens, the Zags haven't played very well in games the last couple of years.

tyra
07-09-2009, 04:03 PM
Thank you Russell. I've been waiting for this thread for weeks! :)

NotoriousZ
07-09-2009, 04:39 PM
Steven Gray or Bol Kong (or better, both) must develop into a consistent wing scoring threat to help take the heat off of Bouldin. I'm telling you, until another wing proves that he can score every game, defenses will construct their game plan to stop Bouldin, and when that happens, the Zags haven't played very well in games the last couple of years.

Gray, barring injury, should be a scoring machine next year. Anything under 20 feet and the bench yells, "lay up!" Kong's roll, IMHO, should prove to be decent production off the bench, but I'm thinking he'll need another year to thrive here. From tapes of his game, he reminds me a little of Austin, not super fast, but with a fine shooter's touch. If he can use his size to snag some boards, he should get more pt. Personally, I'm looking at Arop and Harris to be the most productive freshmen. As for the rest of the team: Rob will battle Steven for the "most improved player" award, Matt will be a stud once again, Meech will entertain us all, and there should be 2 or 3 pleasant surprizes from the guys I haven't even mentioned yet. What a fun year this will be.

Robzagnut
07-09-2009, 05:00 PM
Out with the old. We lost a lot of talent and I couldn't be happier. Now our younger players will have a chance to develop their games and secure our future for the next several years.

Couldn't agree more.

Last years team had too many scorers and no big man lunch pail player. There was no Dench, Pendo, Kuso or Spink. No one to do the dirty work.

This year there should be more balance as there will be scorers (Gray, Bouldin, Kong), defenders (Meech, Arop, Foster) and rebounders (Sacre, Dower, Poling).

75Zag
07-09-2009, 05:11 PM
I like to think positive, but I predict that the Bulldogs will get spanked by every top 25 team they play in 09-10 until they get to the NCAA tournament, by which time (HOPEFULLY) they will have their act together and can make a decent run.

I would be pleased to be wrong, and I hope to be in MSG when GU plays Duke in December, and I would love to see GU smear the smirk off of Coach K's face.

Go Bulldogs! Get Bigger!

kitzbuel
07-09-2009, 05:38 PM
Steven Gray or Bol Kong (or better, both) must develop into a consistent wing scoring threat to help take the heat off of Bouldin. I'm telling you, until another wing proves that he can score every game, defenses will construct their game plan to stop Bouldin, and when that happens, the Zags haven't played very well in games the last couple of years.

That is an area where Micah Down's absence will be most felt. Micah was a consistent enough threat that opposing Ds could not collapse in on the middle. He also prevented a lot of entry passes on D, too.

BobZag
07-09-2009, 05:57 PM
I think, in part, Russell is basically saying that sometimes a program just needs a good flush, to clean out the system so it can move forward once again.

gamagin
07-09-2009, 06:57 PM
reminds me of an oem (original equipment manufacturer) who spent hours trying to sell our company on his new line of products, one super machine in particuar.

As he was asked multiple questions about the efficiency, quality, longevity, service and guarantees that came with his newest super machine, the answer was always, "Yes, it can do that. And better, and faster, and more efficiently than our competitor, too."

Finally, one wag in the back said, "Say, why isn't that machine here? This is a demo conference. We can seek, kick, work and discuss all the other products but yours is nowhere to be seen. Why is that?"

"Because, said the super salesman," trying not to flinch, "We haven't built it yet. But when we do, it will be better than all these you see before us! You will see !"

And therein lies the tale.

Too many of these lads, for the most part, have yet to even try on a GU practice uniform, much less work out in one. And of those returning, only Matt has seen serious minutes, game in and game out, all season long.

Except Matt and a few others, most need to enroll, find a roommate, discover the campus, find the right locker room, get used to being away from home, get to know and appreciate (we hope) the Zag players, coaches, system and world.

All this before they find themselves up against some very hungry, very talented, seasoned teams all over the country, and several more inside the WCC waiting for a chance to take the Zags down a peg or two.

In other words, GU hasn't even assembled, much less built, this team yet.

But when we do, if all of our hopes and ambitions are even met by half, it could, in time, be better than all those we've seen before us. But, until then, we are just going to have to wait and see.

Go TEAM Zags !

saintzag
07-09-2009, 07:31 PM
Gamagin , I agree 100% with your ANALYSIS.We need to temper our optimism with the reality of youth and inexperience,but what the heck, nothing wrong with a little July dreaming.

zag67
07-09-2009, 07:45 PM
I agree with both Gamein and saintzag. The one piece of reality to put on all of our optimism is that our core set of guards are back. Matt, Steven and Meech are a great set of experienced guards to build around and we also have Grant who knows the system. Then you have Sacre and Poling who know the system to build the core for the center and power forward.

So yes we are going to be young and inexperienced as a total team (with all of our new players), but we do have a good core to build on. I am not sure if we will beat any of the top 25 teams, but I do think we will learn and in the end be ready for March (my glass is always half full and getting more):) .

kyle dixon
07-09-2009, 08:45 PM
One thing that this team has missed over the numerous years I have watched Zag ball is swagger. I can tell you that we will not be intimidated. That starts with the pg position.

Meech is a competitor. Who could forget before halftime of the Old Spice final, Meech getting in Wayne Chism of Tenn grill? Even though Chism is a foot taller our future pg looked at him like we are going to kick your ass the rest of this game! This is definitely something previous teams were lacking. I think that this Zag version will be tough and will grow. There is a learning curve and this team will not peak in November or December, rather will be a very tough out come March.

MickMick
07-09-2009, 09:54 PM
Not only will Kong pick up the scoring slack, he will quickly become a star. The Zags are going to be good by mid season and will be very, very good the following season.

hooter73
07-09-2009, 10:04 PM
One thing that this team has missed over the numerous years I have watched Zag ball is swagger. I can tell you that we will not be intimidated. That starts with the pg position.

Meech is a competitor. Who could forget before halftime of the Old Spice final, Meech getting in Wayne Chism of Tenn grill? Even though Chism is a foot taller our future pg looked at him like we are going to kick your ass the rest of this game! This is definitely something previous teams were lacking. I think that this Zag version will be tough and will grow. There is a learning curve and this team will not peak in November or December, rather will be a very tough out come March.

I love Meechs attitude, but so many keep putting him with Steven and Matt which I dont get. He has one year under him averaging 13 minutes per game. I wouldnt exactly call that seasoned or vetted.

Martin Centre Mad Man
07-10-2009, 05:56 AM
One thing that this team has missed over the numerous years I have watched Zag ball is swagger. I can tell you that we will not be intimidated. That starts with the pg position.

Meech is a competitor. Who could forget before halftime of the Old Spice final, Meech getting in Wayne Chism of Tenn grill? Even though Chism is a foot taller our future pg looked at him like we are going to kick your ass the rest of this game! This is definitely something previous teams were lacking. I think that this Zag version will be tough and will grow. There is a learning curve and this team will not peak in November or December, rather will be a very tough out come March.

Dickau had swagger. Santangelo and Frahm had swagger. Calvary had swagger. Kyle Dixon had swagger. Morrison had more swagger than John Wayne.

These young players are going to follow the player with the most energy and the most competitive fire. By mid-season, I have a feeling that this team is going to be Meech's team, and it will continue to be Meech's team for the next several years. They might be a little out of control. They might make some boneheaded rookie mistakes. There will be turnovers. There will never be a lack of energy.

It will be fun to watch.

Russell Bevan
07-10-2009, 06:55 AM
I'm surprised that people question the impact of our newest Zags. They want to see them play in an actual game, etc.... We have eight new members to this team and our coaching staff thinks this is the most impressive class they have ever brought in. How many of the mega programs rotate in large numbers of players on an almost annual basis and they are confident that they will contribute. I realize that this is a new thing for us, especially when we have two redshirts as well, but this is life in big time college basket ball and if the staff has faith, I will too.

We have a great core: Matt, Stephen, Meech and Rob. If Andy and Grant give us good minutes and two of the freshman have an impact we are good to go and based on everything I've been told Harris and Kong are ready to play day one if we needed them.

We are no longer a WCC program we are a national, no with our current group of recruits and international program.

Russell

cjm720
07-10-2009, 07:51 AM
I have little doubt that this is a top 25 team from the get go. Perhaps due to chemistry, we lose a couple games we should win early and will, on paper perhaps keep us out of the rankings (okay, slight contradiction but you know what I mean). Bottom line, most of us have followed the recruiting scene and know how Few can assemble talent. This is our deepest, and will prove to be our best, class ever. When has Few dissapointed? I'm more pumped for this upcoming season than any before!!!

24+ wins...book it.

Book it.

jazzdelmar
07-10-2009, 09:28 AM
just super, russ...agree totally....reading between the lines we are less one brat, one pout and one airhead, as talented as they may have been, and thats a good thing....the three guards back are more than enough to get excited about.....three solid character guys, unselfish; i like that.....with sacre and two or 3 newbies from the chorus we are in good shape......if the brat stays, he is the cynosure of the team's offense and given his inconsistency and middle school attitude that wd not be a good thing, esp in matts senior year.......

VinnyZag
07-10-2009, 10:10 AM
From the inexperience stndpoint? I'm honestly courious but only if everybody can use sane and rational arguements.



yeah, because of the inexperience. Next year's team has basically two guys who have played big minutes in D-I basketball -- Gray and Bouldin. I agree that this might be GU's best recruiting class, but they will have a lot of adjustments to make. And while the sophs have great upside and potential, both will be learning new roles.

I think the interior guys, in particular, are a big question mark. The best GU teams have had great bigs -- Calvary, Turiaf, Batista, Heytvelt. We'll have to see if the current group gets to that level this year (I'm confident they will eventually, just not certain it will happen so soon).

In any case, I hope the optimists are right. This should make for an exciting league race, though, since my guess is that by the beginning of 2010 it will be clear that GU has to win the league to make the tournament.

kitzbuel
07-10-2009, 10:47 AM
OK, I had a nice long post showing that our backcourt is about average in experience compared wtih the rest of the WCC and compared starting PGs with Meech, etc, etc, then accidently googled in the middle of my post and lost it all :(.

So, long story short, GU is right about average in experience compared to the WCC and I suspect that comparison will hold pretty close to true across the NCAA as a whole.

roxdoc
07-10-2009, 11:04 AM
Not to put too fine a point on the nicknames, I think I agree with your underlying thought.

CanadZag
07-10-2009, 11:40 AM
I am excited for next season (excited is an understatement).

However, my optimism is tempered by me also wanting to be realistic.

Firstly, every offseason we on the board discuss how Player-X is going to come in and have a major impact (Ira, Larry G, Doudney, McLeod, etc.). While I'm not challenging the notion that these incoming guys aren't all studs, no team for any program has run a 13-man rotation in my memory. Even 10 seems to be a bit much. An 8 or 9 man rotation is what we'll have.

The truth is, of the newcomers, some (and its plural) will not have a major impact this season, or maybe even at any point in their university career...and thats okay...there simply aren't the minutes or opportunities or shots to go around.

We'll need 3 or 4 of the newbies to step up in a stable role next year. I have faith that this will happen, but it also may not.

I think that we will see a whole new level of talent at Gonzaga next year and the upcoming years, a team that can hang with any team in the country for stretches, and that greatly excites me.

However, my head says that we head to Vegas this yearing having to win the tournament to cement a spot in the dance. This would be based on consistency (whether game-to-game or even in-game) and on-court chemistry issues (particularly in the non-league games, which build the at-large resume).

But all-in-all, I have a great feeling about the direction this team is heading.

Go Zags!

jake
07-10-2009, 02:25 PM
We have a great class coming in, but almost everyone looks good in late night scrimmages. That is why I always temper my enthusiasm.

It's always a bit of a leap of faith with incoming high school guys unless they are real blue chip recruits. Kong seems to have got it done against some D-I teams. Harris and Arop have shown success against international or closer to D-I type talent. Olynyk seems talented, but his inconsistency makes me think he's a year or two away. I haven't seen Gibbs or Dower play and don't have a great reference for where they will come in at. I think the expectations for Poling are a little optimistic, especially for next year, but I'd loved to be surprised at his improvement since high school. In my opinion, the expereince a lot of our guys are getting this summer will only help the team next year.

As Russell said, major programs bring in batches of new guys all the time. I guess I'm just not used to that level of uncertainty. That being said, it appears the coaching staff has some great new faces that will contribute this year. I will need to work on my patience from now until the tip-off of the season.

bballbeachbum
07-10-2009, 03:23 PM
just super, russ...agree totally....reading between the lines we are less one brat, one pout and one airhead, as talented as they may have been, and thats a good thing....the three guards back are more than enough to get excited about.....three solid character guys, unselfish; i like that.....with sacre and two or 3 newbies from the chorus we are in good shape......if the brat stays, he is the cynosure of the team's offense and given his inconsistency and middle school attitude that wd not be a good thing, esp in matts senior year.......

nice tone, jazz :lmao:

cool thread Russell, thank you. my faith rests in the staff's ability, and passion, to make it happen once again next year.

this summer, some of the faithful would have been out for Coach Few's head if last year's critical Sweet 16 run had not happened, if we had flamed out in the 1st or 2nd round last year, imho

Instead, the gift of piece of mind was granted by the Sweet 16 run (led by "airhead" no less :lmao: )

It's HUGE for this year's team that the environment has nothing to do with all of that ridiculousness and distraction, the last thing needed for a young team, and the staff can really focus anxiety free (well, mostly anxiety free :) )

and so I am bullish on next year's team, youth and all, to grow immensely as the year progresses because our staff develops players and teams and can do so from a cool seat intead of a hot one; look how last year's team came together over time.

Patience even after the season starts will be at a premium to groom those young psyches for the home stretch and post season, when the games matter the most.


GO TEAM ZAGS!!!

Rangerzag
07-10-2009, 04:15 PM
....the three guards back are more than enough to get excited about.....three solid character guys, unselfish; i like that.....


anytime JAZZ says something this complementary about any Zag guard, much less three of them who will play on the same team, the rest of the WCC simply hasn't a ghost of a chance!!! None at all!!!!


It leaves me nearly speechless!!!!!!!

BobZag
07-10-2009, 04:21 PM
OK, I had a nice long post showing that our backcourt is about average in experience compared wtih the rest of the WCC and compared starting PGs with Meech, etc, etc, then accidently googled in the middle of my post and lost it all :(.

So, long story short, GU is right about average in experience compared to the WCC and I suspect that comparison will hold pretty close to true across the NCAA as a whole.

Don't you hate it when that happens?

jazzdelmar
07-10-2009, 07:59 PM
anytime JAZZ says something this complementary about any Zag guard, much less three of them who will play on the same team, the rest of the WCC simply hasn't a ghost of a chance!!! None at all!!!!


It leaves me nearly speechless!!!!!!!


tis true.....IMO, these 3 guards are the best 3some since DD, BS and Kyle.....they work hand in glove and are just unsurpassed in character and attitude......

Rangerzag
07-10-2009, 08:06 PM
I made sure to put the nearly in.

We can all certainly hope your prediction is accurate!

Zag79
07-10-2009, 11:31 PM
just super, russ...agree totally....reading between the lines we are less one brat, one pout and one airhead, as talented as they may have been, and thats a good thing....the three guards back are more than enough to get excited about.....three solid character guys, unselfish; i like that.....

interesting thread. its the reason as an ex constant reader and poster i now check in only to see alot of crap, post occasionally and bounce. grown men sitting on there couches and making posts degrading players character and "skill" regarding kids they dont know personally. very lame, almost wierd. russ, jazz, when is the last time you hung out with a player you disliked him enough to make that observation, or statistically backed up your whos good vs whos not opinions? pargo left as one of the best guards Gonzaga has ever had. stats prove it. he wasnt perfect, but no one is. austin was the best player we had coming back, bar none. whiner you say? why? cuz of how his face "looked"?! but let me guess, you guys LOVED pendo? :lmao: pendo made more faces and stomped after every foul more than a two year old throwing a tantrum, yet hes the ultimate zag. yet he was loved by many of you that bag on AD for the same thing. strange. josh, being so "inconsistent" was pretty much our top scorer and rebounder all season. but we are going to label gray and matt solid? unselfish? compared to who? if i recall, pargo led the team in assists. josh double doubles. and ad, well he was just our shot block leader, 2nd best scorer, top rebounder. but lets give kudos to matt who demolished tennessee and wcc schools only to be non existent during most of our big OOC games. and gray who shot the same as terrible shooting pargo from 3. look, i dont want to bag on any player, ive said enough i dont like. matter of fact, i think matt will be our best overall player and gray will be raining 3's this coming season. my point is that your ideas and comments are so biased, yet make no sense other than you "like" a guy more than another. your not happy AD, pargo, josh, some of the most winningest, fighting the odds type of guys left...not based on skill, what they give the team, or how hard they work, BUT how they look and if you "think" they are character people. :lmao: wow. sorry you were unhappy and missed some amazing stories the last couple years. hope all your guys come through next season!

GonzagaLove
07-11-2009, 12:11 AM
We all know that Matt is a stud, what I want is to see the Stephen Gray who scored at will against UCONN. If Stephen can do that on a regular basis (and Rob is 100%, too), we will be a good team.

mgadfly
07-11-2009, 09:01 AM
I rarely jump in on these things, but I really hope all the hype about our young guys doesn't turn into a whole bunch of complaining and lamenting about how they don't have "heart" and the "will" to win.

I personally think we have our best (college) player back: Matt Bouldin. Even so, we lost two amazingly talented 6'11" kids, one with size and hops, a silky shot, who played good position defense and ran the floor as well as any big guy we've had (including Turiaf). We also lost a nearly NBA lottery talent guy that could score and block shots (so what if he was out of position from time to time). We also lost a former McD All-American (that was a lot of "potential" coming out of HS) and one of our steadiest point guards over the past decades who by all accounts was an exceptional leader and chemistry guy even on those rare occasions when he didn't contribute on the floor.


Among the new Zags, who is going to get a stress fracture? Who will struggle to learn the set plays or rotate in the 2-3 zone? Who will be selfish or make faces when he gets called for a foul? Whose shot will be inconsistent? Who will get caught up in off-the-court drama (like legal problems or a family member dying or a pregnant girlfriend or ...) that distracts from basketball?

We don't know yet. Sean Mallon had a ton of hype, was a consistent player, but people on this board were complaining about him getting minutes at the end of his career because the "new" Zags had so much "potential" and they deserved the minutes. Pargo needed to replace Raivio because Pargo had so much "potential." The list goes on and on...

The new Zags are like new toys. They are pretty cool, they haven't disappointed us yet, and we haven't gotten to learn their annoying design features. We will, I'll bet, since virtually every player I've ever watched has some flaw in his game, some annoying characteristic, or some injury or personal matter that interferes with achieving that "potential."

Will this season be fun? Yes. Will we be in the Tournament? We have a lot to prove, including that we can beat Portland. This season Portland has what GU has had in past seasons: talented veteran players that play with a chip on their shoulder because they feel they were over-looked. I can't wait for the season to start, but if we win the conference championship and make an appearance in the NCAA, that is, in a season with so many new guys and unknowns, a major accomplishment by the players and coaches.

ZagNative
07-11-2009, 09:29 AM
I rarely jump in on these things, but I really hope all the hype about our young guys doesn't turn into a whole bunch of complaining and lamenting about how they don't have "heart" and the "will" to win.Great post, mgadfly (and hooray for Zag79, who is the team's greatest defender).

I think, however, it's a hopeless cause, wishing that a certain segment of this board doesn't start out with over-the-top hype, followed by chronic whining and nitpicking.

zag67
07-11-2009, 11:50 AM
Zagnative, well stated. Even if they are in or close to the top 25, but are not beating the Duke's and Michigan State's, then they are going to be projected as failures. People seem to forget what happens early in a season can cause a different prospective. Like last year, losing Robert, changed the whole makeup of the team. It moved Josh and then also Austin to playing different positions. I think that we would have had maybe 3 more wins and therefore been seeded differently in postseason. This year they will forget, that they are going to be young and make miscues at the wrong time. But I do predict that they will make the dance (but not without some scares and hardships). But I think that they will be fun to watch and are going to be more athletic and faster on the court. Their defense may take time to get there but in the end I think that it will be very solid and that we will be a very good rebounding team. I just wish that the summer would end and the information about practices would begin.