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View Full Version : We won't know what this team is...



BobZag
11-20-2011, 09:47 AM
...until after the Western Michigan (they look awful) game next Saturday. Only then, when the guys take on Notre Dame, Arizona, Michigan State, etc., will we know where the team stands. Let's face it, up till now we've played three teams that are going nowhere in March, that can't be considered as good.

The "Eye Test" tells me the Zaggies have a ways to go. Not too good thus far. That's my view...so far.

jazzdelmar
11-20-2011, 10:13 AM
Beezer, I sort of agree cept that ND, AZ and MSU are not world beaters either. In truth this years OOC is not as strong as previously and the lack of a tourney also hurts the SOS. Look at Butler and Illinois, just not what they were when first scheduled.

gamagin
11-20-2011, 10:17 AM
...until after the Western Michigan (they look awful) game next Saturday. Only then, when the guys take on Notre Dame, Arizona, Michigan State, etc., will we know where the team stands. Let's face it, up till now we've played three teams that are going nowhere in March, that can't be considered as good.

The "Eye Test" tells me the Zaggies have a ways to go. Not too good thus far. That's my view...so far.

I want to see the team all on the same page. The HI game saw a LOT of time and effort (3/4ths of the game) getting MC engaged in the game and also getting the ball to EH under the basket where, for one reason or another, the conversions didn't happen and even the f.t.'s clanked.

Not sure what it is about the "warmup" period that seems necessary for MC to get up to speed. But it does. EH seems to have the drive to the hole move down pat, but the get it into the basket from lay-in distance, in traffic, seems elusive to him. I think he needs better moves.

IN any event, the better teams will exploit these things quickly and the lesser teams, like the first three, did their best to disrupt.

EWU, had it not run out of fouls, might have (I think would have) pulled off a W.

Timeout!
11-20-2011, 10:28 AM
Beezer, I sort of agree cept that ND, AZ and MSU are not world beaters either. In truth this years OOC is not as strong as previously and the lack of a tourney also hurts the SOS.

Very true, yet outside of UNC, Kentucky, Ohio St, & maybe 'Cuse, not many "world beaters" this season...

It is pretty top-heavy amongst the Top-5, yet much parity after that...

Mich St lost close games to #1 UNC & #5 Duke on the road(UNC game was closer than the score, imo). The Spartans out-rebounded both teams yet missed easy shots and fouled too much. I felt UNC & Duke struggled to score(besides FT's) vs Sparty, so if those teams are struggled to put the ball in the hoop, so will we...

If you survey the current Top-25 rankings, there is a very small difference between #5 to #25.

'Zona will still be Top-20 when we play them and Xavier could very well be Top-10 by the time we face them too...

I still can't believe we play Notre Dame, Illinois, & Mich St in succession in a few weeks...wow.

jazzdelmar
11-20-2011, 10:32 AM
The sked contains a lot of familiar brand names but no FF prospects, IMO. I also think San Diego State will beat Zona this week. Xavier just beat Miami of Ohio and may lose to Vandy before they face Zags.

Johnnygu
11-20-2011, 10:42 AM
Beezer, I sort of agree cept that ND, AZ and MSU are not world beaters either.

Xavier and @ Illinois will be good tests. Even if the schedule turns out not to be that strong, if the zags go undefeated in ooc with wins over ND, AZ, MSU, Butler, Illinois, and Xavier that would say a lot about the team. I mean are you kidding?! haha...when could Gonzaga say they ever beat a murderer's row like that in one season. Even if it turns out that none of these teams are top ten quality.

I like the continuing evolution of this team so far....Pangos and Bell.... absolutely what the Dr ordered for last year's team. We'll see if it means anything come March.

kclubfounder
11-20-2011, 10:47 AM
Not only have NUMEROUS top 25 teams gone down already, but I just watched a bit of the previously invincible-looking Kentucky team get battled late into the game by Old Dominion.

We've beaten 3 teams who definitely circled the game.

I'm happy.

Mantua
11-20-2011, 10:48 AM
It's difficult to make a good assessment while they are playing teams who foul so often. The coaching staff is still experimenting and that unsettles players. The new players are just getting their feet wet. I see improvement over the last three games, but agree the this team has some work ahead.

Bogozags
11-20-2011, 10:56 AM
Not sure what it is about the "warmup" period that seems necessary for MC to get up to speed. But it does. EH seems to have the drive to the hole move down pat, but the get it into the basket from lay-in distance, in traffic, seems elusive to him. I think he needs better moves.
I think that when EH gets the ball at the elbow, he needs to shoot that shot just as RS. For EH, it will keep the defense honest and after hitting a couple of those, then a little ball fake, and he is off to the races. Those are shots he must have in his "bag of tricks" at the next level. Driving to the "hole" comes easy to him BUT as you said, he has to make those chippies!

IN any event, the better teams will exploit these things quickly and the lesser teams, like the first three, did their best to disrupt. ND, IL and MSU will exploit those weaknesses and we need to "shore them up" (a good Navy term) before we play them. All three of those schools love to go to the glass and rebound extremely well, especially MSU. We have to block out and be "hungry to clean the glass" or those will be long, sleepless nights for us all.

EWU, had it not run out of fouls, might have (I think would have) pulled off a W. Agree, we were lucky to come away with a "W!" I hope the staff was able to convey that to the TEAM. IF they UNDERSTAND, then they can go forward using these three games as learning experiences.

In addition, both Pangos and Bell are becoming very comfortable with each other playing at this speed. GBJ has lots to learn about playing better defense, to become that "lock-down" defender he can be! I like our chances.

After our first three games, RS, EH, P, GBJ and MC are averaging 26 makes of 35 FT's attempts per game. Those are GREAT numbers and EH and MC percentages will improve as the season progresses.

Go Zags

Timeout!
11-20-2011, 11:15 AM
Not only have NUMEROUS top 25 teams gone down already, but I just watched a bit of the previously invincible-looking Kentucky team get battled late into the game by Old Dominion.

We've beaten 3 teams who definitely circled the game.

I'm happy.

This true and somewhat overlooked, really.

Unlike the next few games(ND, Illinois, Mich St, Zona, et al) the Zags are literally the best and/or highest ranked team on their respective schedule.

No joke.

For instance, Hawaii won't face a Ranked opponent the rest of the season. Same goes for Eastern Washington. Even WSU. The Cougs' best OOC opponent was us.

A 'Gonzaga' win would put these teams on the map. Good teams have struggled with bad teams this season(save the Top-5).

All of our opponents are giving it their best, hence the vast # of fouls being called. Not that other teams won't give it their all, its just we were their #1 target on their entire season's schedule.

We're getting every team's best shot and haven't played one "dog" either. No "gimme" games on this early schedule. No Dickinson St's, CSU-UBC's, Coppin Colleges, Fairleigh U's, et al...

Overall, a few sloppy moments/games by certain players, but pretty darn impressed with the team thus far...

We are SOOO much better than the start of last season its not even close...plus, I believe our ceiling this year is even higher. This team just would not get smacked down by SDSU, lost by 20 vs K-State, beat by WSU by 22, etc. No way.

Once every player starts playing as hard as Sacre & the Freshman, we're gonna be special...Marquise looked improved this game, esp once he got "warm".

bartruff1
11-20-2011, 11:25 AM
Come on....those teams will be in the Tourney and if Gonzaga beats them, so will Gonzaga. Looks to me like Few has already decided on a rotation with 7 players getting the bulk of the minutes and the team is catching on and executing and of course we have refs we have always deserved. This is going to be a fun season...one more scrimmage and the game is on....

titopoet
11-20-2011, 12:43 PM
It seems that the team is much further along than last years team at this time. Few has almost everyone playing the roll he wants them to play, (he has Edi to integrate in the the rotation). It is now getting them to play better together and refine their rolls for the team. Last year the backcourt wasn't settled for most season. With everyone having their jobs, Few can continue to teach them and continue to develop the different lineups and everyone's roll in the rotation.

ZagAddict
11-20-2011, 01:03 PM
This team is having to rely upon too many freshman early on. The OOC schedule is going to provide good experience for the youngsters, but we're going to take some lumps. I see some epic battles against SMC late in the year to decide our NCAA tournament fate. Hopefully this team is coming together with a rotation of Pangos, Bell, Landry, Harris, and Sacre late in the year. A bench with Carter, Stockton, and Dower would provide bench depth that would be hard to match in the WCC.

Typically November raises everyone's expectations for the Zags, and then December things fall apart. The murderer's row of games is going to REALLY challenge this team physically and mentally.

roxdoc
11-20-2011, 01:10 PM
I might take it a step further and say we won't know who the team is until after Landry's suspension.

Reborn
11-20-2011, 01:34 PM
The Zags are doing well. They are young and the season is young, so why worry. I think that the quality of the defenses that the Zags have faced this season is going to help them as we move forward game to game. I think eveyone knows the Hawii was a pretty good team, and the Zags, although they struggled on offense, they were able to hold them at bay and won going away by 19. WSU had 3 really good guards and we held our own against them that night, and may have even out done them thanks to Pangos' shooting (plus Bell and Monninghoff). So far the Zags have done what they have needed to do to be 3-0.

We will learn a lot more next week when Notre Dame plays #24 Missouri, and if they win then either #23 Cal or unranked Georgia. This is in the CBE semis and finals on a neutral court. The fighting Irish are also young and rebuilding and they do have a Wooden finalist (I can't spell his name) who was inelligble the first 4 games. Notre Dame comes into K2 and I see no reason the Zags can't beat them at home.

After that is an away game at Illinois, who is also rebuilding. This will be a good contest. I think our biggest test of the year, but one we can win.

Then comes the Michigan State game in K2. This is going to be so much fun. I wish I could go. Michigan State is also rebuilding and the Zags will beat them at home.

I see no reason to worry at all. Its just wasted energy. Sure the games are a little ugly. This is an instance where ugly can be beautiful. I can not handle talking about any other games. Let's wait and see how we are doing after the Michigan State game.

maynard g krebs
11-20-2011, 01:43 PM
It's always gonna take time with freshman guards unless they're Wall or Irving.
People are saying DS is the only guy who's really good at post entry now; Pangos will be just as good pretty soon.

It took Carter most of a season to get in sync with Gray and Goodson; now he's got to get used to the style of their replacements.

IMO Gray didn't get enough credit for his total contributions to the offense, especially when healthy. A lot of the offense ran through him last year, and he averaged about the same # of assists as Bouldin did as a sr. Could it be that Dower and Carter's early struggles might have something to do with the absence of Gray, as Harris' struggles last year had to do with the absence of Bouldin? Not saying that's the case, but it's worth asking.

Familiarity and repetition matter a lot. SLU carving up UW this AM is a case in point. Cal, with its main guards returning, is playing like it's February.

It's still a work in progress and nobody knows how long it'll take (see last year), I'm more excited about watching this team grow than I've been about about a Zags team since 2006.

MDABE80
11-20-2011, 01:50 PM
Young kids at the key positions ,PG and SG. are in development. The teams we have scheduled might not be world beaters but they are teams who get progressively more difficult to beat till the OOC culminates with "X" on New Years...then comes conference. It's a good plan to start slow and build from there. It suits the teams of newcombers and youngsters.
As the guard develop and as Edi joins the fray, this team will be stronger. Look at what the guards' contribution to scoring was the past 2 games. It's soaring. AND the turns are reduced plus nobody's getting stripped now. Passing is becoming just gorgeous.
Defense looks better too.
I'm thinking that progess in play will parallel the urgency of the schedule.

By February the guards will be spectacular. Something is missing down low. Rob's as good as I thought he'd be in pre-season. We need more support in rebounding. Sam is a great kid but he's looks a bit lazy right now in my opinion. He could do SO much more....as could Elias. Spangler needs more minutes...he might get those minutes too. If development of the bigs mimics the backcourt, we'll have an Elite 8 team...with a dash of luck.

U Zig, I Zag
11-20-2011, 02:10 PM
The biggest game changers are going to be:

Edi coming in and getting up to speed. Between him and GBJ (and Hart to some extent) we can guard most stars we will see at 1-3. Who guards Tu will be interesting to see.

Carter coming alive will be key. Not sure where his shot is, but its really not happening for some reason. He needs to be more consistent. Heck, even try to do less, just be more successful at what he does try.

E, Pangos, Bell, Rob, Sam (and eventually Carter) will all alternate 'big games' as the season goes on. As long as they are content with that and don't force things we will be looking pretty good.

Reborn
11-20-2011, 02:12 PM
Oh! I forgot to mention that Pangos is shooting 63% from beyong the 3 pt line, and 89% from the free throw line. Oh and Bell is shooting 40% from beyone the 3 pt line which is good. Yeah!!! Things don't look to good do they?

CaliforniaZaggin'
11-20-2011, 02:19 PM
All teams have room for improvement in November. Everybody has something to work on, including the Zags.

cggonzaga
11-20-2011, 03:01 PM
Who guards Tu will be interesting to see.

I don't think there is any question who will guard him. Bell is hands down the best on ball defender we have ever had. I'm sure Carter will see some time on him to.

04ZagFan
11-20-2011, 04:22 PM
I don't think there is any question who will guard him. Bell is hands down the best on ball defender we have ever had. I'm sure Carter will see some time on him to.

Carter has looked absolutely terrible on D so far this year.. Getting beat badly.. I think Pangos and Bell can guard Tu. Pangos has room to improve defensively, but he's a lot quicker than I thought he would be.

OZZY
11-20-2011, 04:41 PM
As bad as not having Edi able to play while suspended, at least he is able to practise with the team daily. He showed during Kraziness (on top of his other atributes) an ability to pass very well. I also see him providing some of the extra rebounding that Abe was alluding too. IMHO the lineup of KP, GBJ, Edi Elias and Rob has pretty well everything we could want for. With a bench of Stockton, Carter, MM, Dower, Spangler and Hart we cover all positions with quality.

Can't wait for conference play

bigblahla
11-20-2011, 04:47 PM
...until after the Western Michigan (they look awful) game next Saturday. Only then, when the guys take on Notre Dame, Arizona, Michigan State, etc., will we know where the team stands. Let's face it, up till now we've played three teams that are going nowhere in March, that can't be considered as good.

The "Eye Test" tells me the Zaggies have a ways to go. Not too good thus far. That's my view...so far.

A ways to go for sure but..........maybe this team is good enough. Never cared to much for great I can appreciate it but you hardly ever see it. On the other hand good enough might take us all on one heck of a ride. Add in young Mr. Landry and we just might be good enough.

Go!! Zags!!!

john montana
11-20-2011, 04:48 PM
What I don't understand...for a team whose strength is the front court we sure don't get our big guys the ball very often. I can't count the number of times rob, eh or dower had their man playing behind them on the block and we pass up an easy entry pass to swing the ball. Dump it in there! Post entry has been awful, particularly from carter. If we start doing a better job of getting the ball inside I think our offense will look a lot better.

TacomaZAG
11-20-2011, 05:46 PM
incorporated and up to speed. Also, when that happens the rotation can be solidified and roles established. Things are still really in flux, due to the new year and new guys, and the possible missing piece to the puzzle. Can't wait to see Rob, Elias, Kevin, GBJ, and Landry get comfortable with each other, plus the guys off the bench, but that may not happen until conference starts. In the meantime, our Frosh are growing every game, and Coach is able to better determine who is going to do what.

Fun to watch the season get going and the team grow. It's not about November or December, but peaking in conference and the dance.

Go ZAGS

Johnnygu
11-20-2011, 06:06 PM
...for a team whose strength is the front court we sure don't get our big guys the ball very often...we pass up an easy entry pass to swing the ball. Dump it in there! Post entry has been awful....

+1000. Every game I shake my head at this.

Gonzaga needs to let Rob go to work! His post game is a very reliable scoring weapon. Reward the guy when he clears out massive space in the paint.

snebzag
11-20-2011, 06:28 PM
BZ is correct. I don't think this team or staff knows right now what they are made of. Not truly tested yet, but I like the way they are working their way into this year.
I also agree with TacomaZag, Guy Landry will be the key, he is the Three. He will need some time to get in sync. Can he Practice with the team? I see the starting lineup as KP, GB, GL, EH, RS coming near the end of OOC schedule. He will help the front court and still be able to get looks outside.

WanderingZag
11-20-2011, 09:23 PM
That's gonna be a rough and defining run at the end of November, beginning of December. Notre Dame, Illinois, Michigan State, (Oral Roberts), and Arizona all within 2.5 weeks!