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CDC84
05-12-2010, 11:14 AM
http://sports.espn.go.com/ncb/columns/story?columnist=katz_andy&id=5179956


9. Gonzaga: The Bulldogs are a bit like Villanova. When you digest that they lost Matt Bouldin, you assume they've lost their star and will fade. But the Zags do return a star in the making in Elias Harris. He should be the more featured player this season, and given room to shine, will produce. If Steven Gray can be more consistent on the perimeter, Demetri Goodson can be more consistent as a lead guard and Robert Sacre can be a force inside, Gonzaga will be the top team in the West -- again.

CDC = when looking at this list, what strikes me is that college basketball next season could be even more chaotic than it was last season. I realize that Kansas bombed out in the 2nd round, and Kentucky exited in the elite 8, but next season, you can book it: there will not be any teams as powerful as those two teams.

Duke is the obvious number one, but they lost Scheyer and the guy who I felt was the #1 key to them winning it all: Brian Zoubek. There's going to be a ton of pressure on newcomers Seth Curry and Kyrie Irving. Purdue is at #2, but they lost their inspirational leader in Erik Kramer, Hummel still has to prove he has overcome his ACL injury, and there isn't a single first round level draft pick in the rotation. Other projected top teams lost very important players who won't be easily replaced like Scottie Reynolds, Tweety Carter, Evan Turner, and Denis Clemente.

So when you see Mark Few making drastic roster changes this offseason, it's not only to take advantage of the presence of Elias Harris, but also to take advantage of a college basketball climate that will be very chaotic.

BobZag
05-12-2010, 11:43 AM
I have heard that the staff is going "all in" for 2010, partly due to it likely being Elias' final year, but also because of the situation CDC describes.

Zags will be better next season than last season, then the Zags are shaping up to be better and better each year after next season "if" Wiltjer and guys like Pangos come in.

Good times ahead.

VinnyZag
05-12-2010, 12:42 PM
I have heard that the staff is going "all in" for 2010, partly due to it likely being Elias' final year, but also because of the situation CDC describes.

Zags will be better next season than last season, then the Zags are shaping up to be better and better each year after next season "if" Wiltjer and guys like Pangos come in.

Good times ahead.

I don't see how they can lose Harris and Gray and be better the next year, but ... hope you're right.

MDABE80
05-12-2010, 01:21 PM
Let's wait and see on ELias. A lot assumes he'll leave because he knocks everyone's eyes out. In the NBA he won't be a 4. Too small. 3 maybe...he's a tweener. as was Casey. If he has a spectaculasr year, they'll figure out where to put him. If it's not an amazing year (this past year was surprising but not amazing)...alot depends on the draft...who's in it... he'll have another year with us. I hope he stays.

FlyZag
05-12-2010, 02:28 PM
I'm a HUGE Elias fan, however I don't see the same thing as everyone else in regards to the NBA. I see a very talented D1 player with a great motor and all kinds of potential. However, I also see an undersized power forward who's defensive game isn't near as good as his offense and struggles with long armed athletic competition (see Memphis). Perhaps I'm wrong, but I just don't see him as an early entry type. Of course, I said the same thing about Austin... so that tells you right there that my basketball acumen means SQUAT DIDDLY!

I'm sure he'll find his role on some NBA bench for a year or two... but a first round guaranteed contract, early entry type? Not sure quite yet. I mean is he that different than a player like... say Dior from SF? Maybe he is and I just can't see the forest through the trees.

CDC84
05-12-2010, 03:13 PM
Elias was projected to be a mid-1st round draft choice at draftexpress.com before he announced he was staying at Gonzaga. Other draft analysts had the same take. I am normally suspicious of mock draft lists, but the guys behind draftexpress.com at least have a clue.

The only place where we have seen Elias defend is at the 4. He's going to have problems defending the 4 in college because of his height. On the German national team, he defended on the perimeter and was praised many times for his on ball defense. I think there are question marks concerning his defense on the next level, but only because scouts haven't actually seen him defend his true position at the college level (and they probably won't get to see it this year either). His performance during workouts will be key.

The main thing Elias needs to work on are offensive countermoves. He desperately needs to develop his left hand. Defenses toward the end of the season began playing him off of his left shoulder, and it messed him up. Once he gets both hands going, he will be extremely difficult to stop with his mid range game and his work near the basket. We've already seen that he can shoot from the perimeter...he was a 45% three point shooter last year.

BobZag
05-12-2010, 03:37 PM
The impending NBA strike/lockout could bring Elias back for a third year, I suppose. Theoretically. Hypothetically. Maybe baby.

NotoriousZ
05-12-2010, 04:11 PM
The impending NBA strike/lockout could bring Elias back for a third year, I suppose. Theoretically. Hypothetically. Maybe baby.

Strike! Strike! Strike! Get your picket signs out for 2011 and be ready to head down to the Key Arena, oh wait I mean the Rose Garden and let's make this happen. Harris for a third year--good theory BZ.

CDC84
05-12-2010, 04:36 PM
I'm sure if Elias wants to come back for his junior season, Gonzaga will find a place for him :o

dim4sum
05-12-2010, 04:45 PM
Of course there will be a place for Elias as a junior, unless Wiltjer explodes beyond everyone's wildest hopes and knocks him out of the starting five.
As chairman Mao once confided in me, "let 100 flowers bloom."

BobZag
05-12-2010, 06:00 PM
Of course there will be a place for Elias as a junior, unless Wiltjer explodes beyond everyone's wildest hopes and knocks him out of the starting five.
As chairman Mao once confided in me, "let 100 flowers bloom."

And to think all this time, I thought Buddha said that.

Cancel the 2011 NBA draft, they should.

:)