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View Full Version : My thoughts: Few is the man; adapt and adopt



skan72
03-24-2014, 11:05 PM
Up until very recently, I used to be part of the believers that we, the Zags, needed to replace Mark Few with a coach who could actually breakthrough in the tournament and get to a Final Four; however, I actually sat down and put some deep thought into it and looked at the numbers and came to a different conclusion. I am sure most of these numbers are common knowledge, but I'm doing this anyway to better explain my post.

Mark Few has been a head coach for 15 years, all of which have been at Gonzaga.

The Zags have been the WCC regular season champs 13 of Few's 15 seasons at the helm and WCC tournament champs 11 of those 15 seasons. 2011-12 was the only time they failed to not win either the WCC regular season or WCC tournament.

He is 402-99 overall (.802) and 193-25 in the conference (.885). He is 21-42 vs the AP Top 25, including NCAA tourney games.

Few is 16-15 in the NCAA Tournament. He's coached the Zags to the tournament for 15 straight seasons.
He's appeared in four Sweet Sixteens, the last appearance coming in 2009.
Few has bowed out in the Round of 64 thrice and the Round of 32 eight times.
During Few's tenure, we've been defeated by a lower seed in the tournament five times and a higher seed ten times. This includes five losses to #1 seeds, two losses to #2 seeds, one loss to a #3 seed. This also includes three losses to teams that made it as far as the Elite 8, three losses to teams that made it as far as the Final Four, one loss to the National Championship runner-up, and one loss to the National Champion. Six of the 14 losses (not including this fifteenth loss yet as we don't know where Arizona will end up) we have suffered in the tournament came at the hands of a team that at least made it to the Final Four.

In the past few days, my beliefs regarding Few have changed completely while perusing these stats and thinking over his (and Gonzaga's) success. The man is an elite coach. Yes, the WCC is not a high-major conference and quite often has only been a one-bid league, but show me any coach - high-, mid-, or low-major - that has had success like this over 15 seasons. Every coach that has had consistent success at a mid-major and was thought of as one of the next great coaches has moved onto bigger and better things, generally with results that aren't as good as they were when they were at their mid-major school. And yes, I understand this is partly due to being in better conferences where the competition across the board is a lot stiffer, but still…

I believe all Few needs to do is what I hear Jerry Krause preach every time I've heard him speak - adapt and/or adopt. If you're bad at something, adopt a new way of doing it; if you're pretty good at something but know you could be better, adapt little things that will help you reach that upper echelon. He's still a relatively young coach and has quite a few years left; it's a process, and you adapt. Few recruits/produces players that have great skills/fundamentals, but maybe it could be that Few needs to recruit a few more guys who are at elite-levels athletically, or switch how he game plans for certain teams. Whatever it may be, there is no doubt in my mind anymore that Few (and his staff) is (are) the right guy(s) for the job* at Gonzaga University.

*the job being to reach a Final Four/contend for an NC

EDIT: and in regards to this year, it was heartbreaking (as it always is and always will be), but we were beaten by a much better basketball team this year.

gonzagafan62
03-25-2014, 06:34 AM
Awesome post. Thanks for sharing.

zag67
03-25-2014, 07:42 AM
Super post well stated. Thanks for all of the research.

cjm720
03-25-2014, 08:38 AM
Skan72, great post! Agree completely. We are lucky to have coach Few!

seacatfan
03-25-2014, 11:07 AM
I've been all over the board the last handful of seasons re: Few and the future of the Zags. I think where I'm at today--Few should stay as long as he wants, unlikely GU would get someone better. His winning percentage and consistency in the WCC and getting to the Tourney speak for themselves. However I've had to console myself that Few and GU have hit their ceiling, and hoping and waiting for a "breakthrough" is fool's gold (for me at least). He is who he is, I don't think he's likely to evolve as a coach. He has limitations, the GU program has limitations and a steady diet of two and out with an occasional Sweet 16 is about what we can expect. A handful of unexpected teams have gotten to Final 4's in recent years, but I don't really expect Gonzaga to join them anymore. Few's mindset and the make up of the GU teams that take the floor each season just aren't built for runs that deep in the Tourney. It's what I've finally accepted, it's just an opinion, maybe I'm completely wrong, I hope so. I'm still looking forward to watching the Zags next season and watching various players throughout their careers.

skan72
03-25-2014, 11:23 AM
I've been all over the board the last handful of seasons re: Few and the future of the Zags. I think where I'm at today--Few should stay as long as he wants, unlikely GU would get someone better. His winning percentage and consistency in the WCC and getting to the Tourney speak for themselves. However I've had to console myself that Few and GU have hit their ceiling, and hoping and waiting for a "breakthrough" is fool's gold (for me at least). He is who he is, I don't think he's likely to evolve as a coach. He has limitations, the GU program has limitations and a steady diet of two and out with an occasional Sweet 16 is about what we can expect. A handful of unexpected teams have gotten to Final 4's in recent years, but I don't really expect Gonzaga to join them anymore. Few's mindset and the make up of the GU teams that take the floor each season just aren't built for runs that deep in the Tourney. It's what I've finally accepted, it's just an opinion, maybe I'm completely wrong, I hope so. I'm still looking forward to watching the Zags next season and watching various players throughout their careers.

Obviously, based on my original post, I don't agree with anything you said but what I've bolded. But that's the point of the forum - healthy disagreements, agreements, sharing of opinions, and debate about our Zags.

I don't believe they've hit their ceiling; I like to be positive in regards to GU. Looking at the numbers, the current players, and this incoming class (especially if Sabonis officially joins it sometime soon) we could very reasonably expect/see an Elite 8 and Final Four breakthrough in the next 1-3 seasons.

seacatfan
03-25-2014, 11:47 AM
Obviously, based on my original post, I don't agree with anything you said but what I've bolded. But that's the point of the forum - healthy disagreements, agreements, sharing of opinions, and debate about our Zags.

I don't believe they've hit their ceiling; I like to be positive in regards to GU. Looking at the numbers, the current players, and this incoming class (especially if Sabonis officially joins it sometime soon) we could very reasonably expect/see an Elite 8 and Final Four breakthrough in the next 1-3 seasons.

Disagreement is fine, like I said it's just my opinion and nothing would be better than my opinion being wrong. I happen to think last year ('13) and the '09 team are about as talented of a Zags team as we're likely to see and they didn't get particularly far in the Tourney. "Next year" is what keeps fans everywhere coming back year after year. There are a handful of new players, freshmen and a transfer being added to the mix next season. Some people are heaping huge expectations on those newcomers. I used to think every year "This is the Zags year!" I was already starting to waiver, but had my hopes built up last year. That ending of the season was crushing. The players keep changing, but the end result is the same. For me it makes more sense to assume that is the likely outcome of each season rather than set myself up for another disappointment each year.

gonzagafan62
03-25-2014, 11:55 AM
Disagreement is fine, like I said it's just my opinion and nothing would be better than my opinion being wrong. I happen to think last year ('13) and the '09 team are about as talented of a Zags team as we're likely to see and they didn't get particularly far in the Tourney. "Next year" is what keeps fans everywhere coming back year after year. There are a handful of new players, freshmen and a transfer being added to the mix next season. Some people are heaping huge expectations on those newcomers. I used to think every year "This is the Zags year!" I was already starting to waiver, but had my hopes built up last year. That ending of the season was crushing. The players keep changing, but the end result is the same. For me it makes more sense to assume that is the likely outcome of each season rather than set myself up for another disappointment each year.

Well if that's how you think, you could always do to us, what you did with the Cubs :lmao:

skan72
03-25-2014, 12:13 PM
Disagreement is fine, like I said it's just my opinion and nothing would be better than my opinion being wrong. I happen to think last year ('13) and the '09 team are about as talented of a Zags team as we're likely to see and they didn't get particularly far in the Tourney. "Next year" is what keeps fans everywhere coming back year after year. There are a handful of new players, freshmen and a transfer being added to the mix next season. Some people are heaping huge expectations on those newcomers. I used to think every year "This is the Zags year!" I was already starting to waiver, but had my hopes built up last year. That ending of the season was crushing. The players keep changing, but the end result is the same. For me it makes more sense to assume that is the likely outcome of each season rather than set myself up for another disappointment each year.

I agree with you last year and the '09 team were two of the most talented GU teams ever, but I don't think that they are the ceiling for what we'll see in the future. That's the beauty of college basketball - turnover from year-to-year with new faces, new talent, new expectations, and new goals.

I was going to say your post seems to be coming from someone who is a realist at first, but now I just think it is coming from someone who isn't a true fan. True fans stick by and support and hope no matter what. Sure, as I stated at one point I thought we could be better without Few, but that never stopped me from expecting an E8/FF run from our program and being heartbroken when it didn't happen. Setting my expectations lower to avoid disappointment is just not an option. In my opinion, for a perennial top-25 team every season should end with heartbreak - not winning a National Championship - or amazing glory - winning an NC. It's the heartbreak and sick feeling (or elation) that reassures me every year this is my team, as it is every other Gonzaga supporter's team, and that I bleed for them and celebrate with them every time something devastating or gloriously momentous happens, respectively.

titopoet
03-25-2014, 12:27 PM
The only thing I would add is that he done this with only one top 25 recruiting class his entire time 9low twenties at that). He has yet to get a top ten recruit. He has made Spokane a place this kid consider coming to is a testament to his record.

mattydog73
03-25-2014, 02:37 PM
He is 21-42 vs the AP Top 25, including NCAA tourney games.

Actually, he is 21-63 vs AP top 25. Only mention that as the difference between wining 50% vs top 25 and 33% is sizable, IMO.

Oregonzagnut
03-25-2014, 03:43 PM
I have only seen 5-6 people ever who posted that a better coach, without a ceiling (whether in his control or not) would take us further. And even out of those only 1-2 actually are long time regulars.

I think the majority, no wait the VAST majority, know that Few is first and foremost a teacher. If a teacher cannot "improve and adapt" they should not ask their students to in the classroom, the court or later in life.

IMO, and this is from being, not only a "legacy family" myself, but also one who has spent the majority of my life having a parent who taught and was an administrator at Gonzaga, that ethically, Few is bound to do things the right way, the hard working way, and the way that builds long lasting programs and not flashes in the pan or a one and done machine that sells out kids maturity and responsibility to themselves and others. In other words, the unique Gonzaga Jesuit Way. Both educationally and in building the WHOLE person. Mentally, educationally, physically and spiritually.

I'm no coach but it doesn't take long to see in kids whether they have their heads on straight and looking at their accomplishments in their first 18 yrs and their daily habits. I am also pretty sure that scientifically and managerially, he knows that any changes in a sociological system can have unforseen effects and results. So hetakes it slow. There are no shortcuts, and he seeks a "whole person" in the first place. Gonzaga has most of the incentives to get the best players who will stay 4 years and get their degree. But IMO, Few does not want a "McDonalds" burger, he wants one cooked on his own BBQ. Indeed there are McD all americans and other 5 star elite H.S players who would be "whole people" both mentally and educationally. Few will not allow that me-first attitude and he screens it out long before we hear of who they are recruiting. He will not allow the team to be compromised by hoping to change a recruit who clearly displayed characteristics that will not work in Fews system and "life science" philosophy. It is based and dictated by the Gonzaga Jesuit mission statement and basketball is 2nd in that mission. Maybe even 3rd or 4th.

Winning will never happen by cheating or gambling too much too quick. Few is more patient and HIS bosses (in collars) have all the time in the world. Few has done more than any other head coach to start his career and to think people want him to leave or that the grass is greener with some other coach who has a final four under his belt is kinda comical. However eveyone has the right to their opinion, and sometimes unpopular or even unbelievable opinions turn out to be true. Maybe Few does have a ceiling, but if that ceiling is selling out Gonzaga's primary reason for existing, I will happily forgo a N.C. if it comes by selling out our standards.

drvenkman05
03-25-2014, 03:44 PM
I agree with you last year and the '09 team were two of the most talented GU teams ever, but I don't think that they are the ceiling for what we'll see in the future. That's the beauty of college basketball - turnover from year-to-year with new faces, new talent, new expectations, and new goals.

I was going to say your post seems to be coming from someone who is a realist at first, but now I just think it is coming from someone who isn't a true fan. True fans stick by and support and hope no matter what. Sure, as I stated at one point I thought we could be better without Few, but that never stopped me from expecting an E8/FF run from our program and being heartbroken when it didn't happen. Setting my expectations lower to avoid disappointment is just not an option. In my opinion, for a perennial top-25 team every season should end with heartbreak - not winning a National Championship - or amazing glory - winning an NC. It's the heartbreak and sick feeling (or elation) that reassures me every year this is my team, as it is every other Gonzaga supporter's team, and that I bleed for them and celebrate with them every time something devastating or gloriously momentous happens, respectively.

Here it is, the "if you disagree, you aren't a true fan" line to shut-down discussion. Everybody has different wants, expectations, and the like, and in the end, these have NOTHING to do with one's level of "fan-ness."

I don't understand why it is so difficult for people to encounter disagreement without resorting to name-calling temper-tantrums. If we can't discuss (and yes, disagree), what is the point of even having a message board?

To the point of the original post, I think you're right on about Few adapting. Just as we expect players to grow and adapt, we should expect the same of our coach. I think, over the past years, Few has begun to do that (e.g., defense IS getting better). I hope it continues!

BBzag
03-25-2014, 04:20 PM
Actually, he is 21-63 vs AP top 25. Only mention that as the difference between wining 50% vs top 25 and 33% is sizable, IMO.

Actually, the originally cited 21-42 won-loss record (which is correct) is 33 percent. A 21-63 record would be 25 percent.

Zagceo
03-25-2014, 04:37 PM
Here's my 2 cents on coaching!

It was proven a freshman class of high school AA could beat an experienced Final Four team in a NCAA tourney game. Talent wins!

Obviously you can still compete with lesser athletes like Butler in making FF run but for the most part if you can't get the top talent you're not gonna win National Championships!
The fact that GU has been to the dance 17 times and made it to 1 elite 8 game says a lot.

Lighting can strike like Villanova 1985.... Thats all I need............The more opportunities you give yourself of getting on that mountain the better you have to get struck by that lightening!

Should I expect Gonzaga University to win the National Championship every year because they make the NCAA tournament? No, I don't think thats a reasonable expectation. It's my hope and my dream.

Like my wife always says.......... "ya can't take a fella hope away because that might be all he's got"!

surfmonkey89
03-25-2014, 05:02 PM
I think the fundamental disconnect is that one group here feels that the program can make the Final Four, but is underachieving, versus another camp that feels the fact that it's in the tourney every year is a minor miracle in and of itself, as a result of overacheiving.

If you're in the former group, you're highly critical of the results, because you want more, more, more. If you're the latter group, you're just happy we're having the conversation.

I used to be in the former group, but I'm transitioning to the latter. Makes for a much calmer existence until you come to this board :)

Zag365
03-25-2014, 05:32 PM
I don't know where posters get the idea that, after reciting the virtually unprecedented accomplishments of Coach Few, it makes sense to say he hasn't achieved enough so it's time to move on. What? He put this together. "We" have supported/reveled in it, but, in basketball terms, "we" were a no-name school in an out of the way city playing in an obscure conference as a one-answer D-1 basketball trivia question (who is John Stockton?). If any decent coach could have done this, why didn't it happen before? Why is no one else able to replicate it in the last 15 years?

Mark Few's achievements are monumental and the fact that the Zags have not reached a FF yet (it will come under Coach Few) only shows how tough it is to achieve given all the barriers (and more) that I just mentioned. It is not a reflection on Coach Few; it is a reflection of the reality of who we are, our circumstances, and our past. And, I like us just fine. I'm so thankful that Coach Few seems to feel the same way and has chosen to turn down offer after offer to leave for a "better deal."

I'm never disappointed in our players or our coach, I'm only disappointed for them when we don't prevail because this program is not only great but reflects all the values the Zag family holds dear. Coach Few has shown that he knows how to build a program in spite of our weaknesses (and has turned them into strengths). Most schools would kill for what we have (in fact, "the next Gonzaga" has become a nationally accepted description for any mid-major aspiring to greatness). Claiming our coach is inadequate or underachieving is crazy talk. We'll be lucky to maintain what we have when Coach Few retires.

skan72
03-25-2014, 05:52 PM
Actually, he is 21-63 vs AP top 25. Only mention that as the difference between wining 50% vs top 25 and 33% is sizable, IMO.

Took this stat from Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gonzaga_Bulldogs_men's_basketball#Gonzaga_vs._the_ AP_Top_25_.28since_1998.E2.80.9399.29.

Show me where you get 21-63 from.


Here it is, the "if you disagree, you aren't a true fan" line to shut-down discussion. #Everybody has different wants, expectations, and the like, and in the end, these have NOTHING to do with one's level of "fan-ness." #




I don't understand why it is so difficult for people to encounter disagreement without resorting to name-calling temper-tantrums. #If we can't discuss (and yes, disagree), what is the point of even having a message board?




To the point of the original post, I think you're right on about Few adapting. #Just as we expect players to grow and adapt, we should expect the same of our coach. #I think, over the past years, Few has begun to do that (e.g., defense IS getting better). #I hope it continues!


I'm curious as where you saw me throwing a temper tantrum? I didn't feel a "temper" nor a "tantrum" when I wrote my response. Pretty levelheaded, actually.


I don't know where posters get the idea that, after reciting the virtually unprecedented accomplishments of Coach Few, it makes sense to say he hasn't achieved enough so it's time to move on. What? He put this together. "We" have supported/reveled in it, but, in basketball terms, "we" were a no-name school in an out of the way city playing in an obscure conference as a one-answer D-1 basketball trivia question (who is John Stockton?). If any decent coach could have done this, why didn't it happen before? Why is no one else able to replicate it in the last 15 years?

Mark Few's achievements are monumental and the fact that the Zags have not reached a FF yet (it will come under Coach Few) only shows how tough it is to achieve given all the barriers (and more) that I just mentioned. It is not a reflection on Coach Few; it is a reflection of the reality of who we are, our circumstances, and our past. And, I like us just fine. I'm so thankful that Coach Few seems to feel the same way and has chosen to turn down offer after offer to leave for a "better deal."

I'm never disappointed in our players or our coach, I'm only disappointed for them when we don't prevail because this program is not only great but reflects all the values the Zag family holds dear. Coach Few has shown that he knows how to build a program in spite of our weaknesses (and has turned them into strengths). Most schools would kill for what we have (in fact, "the next Gonzaga" has become a nationally accepted description for any mid-major aspiring to greatness). Claiming our coach is inadequate or underachieving is crazy talk. We'll be lucky to maintain what we have when Coach Few retires.

I don't think you read my original post very thoroughly. After listing his impressive resume, I stated precisely that we definitely shouldn't be moving on from Few until he retires and that I used to be of the wrong, in my opinion, belief that Few wasn't doing as well as he could for GU.

Zag365
03-25-2014, 05:59 PM
Took this stat from Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gonzaga_Bulldogs_men's_basketball#Gonzaga_vs._the_ AP_Top_25_.28since_1998.E2.80.9399.29.

Show me where you get 21-63 from.



I'm curious as where you see me throwing a temper tantrum?



I don't think you read my original post very thoroughly. After listing his impressive resume, I stated precisely that we definitely shouldn't be moving on from Few until he retires.

I did read your post. Not talking about OP; I'm referring to comments from others (who I believe are a small minority based on hundreds -- if not thousands -- of discussions with others Zag fans over the years).

skan72
03-25-2014, 06:01 PM
I think the fundamental disconnect is that one group here feels that the program can make the Final Four, but is underachieving, versus another camp that feels the fact that it's in the tourney every year is a minor miracle in and of itself, as a result of overacheiving.

If you're in the former group, you're highly critical of the results, because you want more, more, more. If you're the latter group, you're just happy we're having the conversation.

I used to be in the former group, but I'm transitioning to the latter. Makes for a much calmer existence until you come to this board :)

I believe GU has had two or three teams under Few that could have made the FF, but didn't. They underachieved or, as I prefer to believe, ran into another really good team. The rest have done as well as I expected for the most part! But yes, as a top-25 program, I expect the program to make E8 and FF runs every once in awhile. It'll never be as much as some of the top high-majors for obvious reasons, but I'd expect it to happen every once in awhile.

When the teams do "underachieve" it's always for a variety of reasons - running into a better team, injuries, miscues, etc. That's how sports work. It's not on any one factor, sometimes things just don't go your way, but that doesn't make it any less heartbreaking.

maynard g krebs
03-25-2014, 06:09 PM
I don't know where posters get the idea that, after reciting the virtually unprecedented accomplishments of Coach Few, it makes sense to say he hasn't achieved enough so it's time to move on. What? He put this together. "We" have supported/reveled in it, but, in basketball terms, "we" were a no-name school in an out of the way city playing in an obscure conference as a one-answer D-1 basketball trivia question (who is John Stockton?). If any decent coach could have done this, why didn't it happen before? Why is no one else able to replicate it in the last 15 years?

Mark Few's achievements are monumental and the fact that the Zags have not reached a FF yet (it will come under Coach Few) only shows how tough it is to achieve given all the barriers (and more) that I just mentioned. It is not a reflection on Coach Few; it is a reflection of the reality of who we are, our circumstances, and our past. And, I like us just fine. I'm so thankful that Coach Few seems to feel the same way and has chosen to turn down offer after offer to leave for a "better deal."

I'm never disappointed in our players or our coach, I'm only disappointed for them when we don't prevail because this program is not only great but reflects all the values the Zag family holds dear. Coach Few has shown that he knows how to build a program in spite of our weaknesses (and has turned them into strengths). Most schools would kill for what we have (in fact, "the next Gonzaga" has become a nationally accepted description for any mid-major aspiring to greatness). Claiming our coach is inadequate or underachieving is crazy talk. We'll be lucky to maintain what we have when Coach Few retires.

Perfectly stated.

maynard g krebs
03-25-2014, 06:12 PM
Show me where you get 21-63 from.



21 wins and 42 losses equals 63 games. I am guessing that's the source of confusion.

skan72
03-25-2014, 06:22 PM
I did read your post. Not talking about OP; I'm referring to comments from others (who I believe are a small minority based on hundreds -- if not thousands -- of discussions with others Zag fans over the years).

Ok, awesome. Then I completely agree with you.

Oregonzagnut
03-25-2014, 06:58 PM
I'm kinda curious. Who is this "group" of posters who want to replace Mark Few? Can anyone find me actual posts? Or maybe multiple posts, from multiple people who have stated this specifically and repeatedly? I have been here a long time and I am struggling with this vague idea of some group of posters who think Few should be replaced ASAP.

When I search, all I find are earlier and earlier references to these people but no real source posts from a "group" that make these clear statements.

skan72
03-25-2014, 07:19 PM
The only thing I would add is that he done this with only one top 25 recruiting class his entire time 9low twenties at that). He has yet to get a top ten recruit. He has made Spokane a place this kid consider coming to is a testament to his record.

I should have mentioned this. Great point. And, in an article posted elsewhere on the board by VinnyZag, Gonzaga has only had 6 NBA draftees in Few's tenure. Every other team to defeat the Zags in the tournament in that same span, besides two, has had at least one pro prospect on their roster.

CB4
03-25-2014, 07:56 PM
I would replace Mark Few with Tommy Lloyd - Likely something Lloyd would object to if given the opportunity, but in a perfect world that would be my first move as Gonzaga AD.

Oregonzagnut
03-25-2014, 09:04 PM
I would replace Mark Few with Tommy Lloyd - Likely something Lloyd would object to if given the opportunity, but in a perfect world that would be my first move as Gonzaga AD.

You are the first person I have seen to make a clear statement that you want to get rid of Few. I'd like to see where you or anyone has previously posted this direct statement before, because you are the first. Other than some trolls who don't come back after 5-10 posts.

So why do you think Tommy Lloyd would do better than Few? specifically.

CB4
03-25-2014, 09:43 PM
You are the first person I have seen to make a clear statement that you want to get rid of Few. I'd like to see where you or anyone has previously posted this direct statement before, because you are the first. Other than some trolls who don't come back after 5-10 posts.

So why do you think Tommy Lloyd would do better than Few? specifically.


Here's a few reasons:


When you talk to former Gonzaga players about their experience at Gonzaga, he is always at the center of the conversation. He's a leader the players seem to get behind.

Lloyd is Gonzaga's recruiting mastermind (Harris, Pangos, Turiaf, et al.).

He's been loyal to the program for over a decade and has a better understanding of the pros and cons of the current program than anyone else.

His hiring would hedge the risk of a sudden downturn (we could be fairly sure that Gonzaga would continue to the WCC bully), but it would also create an opportunity for growth.

bartruff1
03-26-2014, 05:11 AM
Actually, the originally cited 21-42 won-loss record (which is correct) is 33 percent. A 21-63 record would be 25 percent.

I am under the impression that there are only a hand full of coaches who have a winning record against the top 25 and they are all in the top five conferences who play top 25 teams several times a year.

Can anyone tell me if there are any mid major coaches who have a better record than Few against the top 25 ?? Stevens ? Smart ? Fischer ???

Thanks in advance for any info.

bigblahla
03-26-2014, 05:46 AM
I would replace Mark Few with Tommy Lloyd - Likely something Lloyd would object to if given the opportunity, but in a perfect world that would be my first move as Gonzaga AD.

I've read some really dumb posts on this board but yours might be the dumbest of all time.

Are you another final four or bust loonie whose sense of entitlement blinds you to the absolutely amazing feat of turning a small Jesuit school in podunk nowhere into a national brand yet it's not enough for you? So your patience has expired and you just can't wait any longer for what you think you deserve? Hey call Mike Roth I'm sure he'll listen to you or better yet show up at the men's banquet and demand the podium to make your case.

You can call yourself a Gonzaga fan but you're not! You're a fan of the program in your head not the one that takes the floor as they're not good enough for you....your dream team and staff are better...

I delete more of these than not but this one stays......

Go!! Zags!!!

drvenkman05
03-26-2014, 08:24 AM
Calling someone "not a true fan" is the temper tantrum (na-na-na-na, you're a __________ - we've all done it as kids and continue to see kids do it). Odd that you consider name-calling levelheaded. I don't understand the need to personally attack people with whom you disagree. If we can't discuss and disagree, what is the point of having a message board?

deathchina
03-26-2014, 08:28 AM
I don't have the statistic for how other non BCS coaches do against the top 25..but last season I posted this....our record against teams that FINISH the year in ken Pom's top 25. I use this metric instead of AP rankings because we usually play the big teams in preconference, when rankings themselves are basically worthless. Ken Pom's end of season rankings are a much better indicator of if a team was actually good or not. This is GU's record against the top 25 over a 10 year span. I think this runs from like 2003-2012. I can no longer access Ken Pom's stuff so can't update.


#8 San Diego St L 79-76 Home
#18 Illinois L 73-61 Semi-Home
#15 Notre Dame L 83-79 Away
#13 BYU L 89-67 Neutral
#23 Michigan St. L 75-71 Away
#9 Wisconsin W 74-61 Neutral
#1 Duke L 76-41 Neutral
#24 FSU W 67-60 Neutral
#4 Syracuse L 87-65 Neutral
#3 Uconn L 88-83 Semi-Home
#2 Memphis L 68-50 Home
#1 UNC L 98-77 Neutral
#22 Uconn W 85-82 Semi-Away
#10 WSU L 51-47 Home
#14 Tennessee L 82-72 Semi-Home
#2 Memphis L 81-73 Away
#20 Davidson L 82-76 Neutral
#1 UNC W 82-74 Neutral
#25 Butler L 79-71 Neutral
#21 Texas W 87-77 Neutral
#11 Duke L 61-54 Neutral
#9 Memphis L 78-77 Home
#16 Indiana L 70-57 Neutral
#4 Uconn L 65-63 Neutral
#13 UW L 99-95 Away
#9 Memphis L 83-72 Away
#3 UCLA L 73-71 Neutral
#2 Illinois L 89-72 Neutral
#15 UW W 99-87 Home
#19 Georgia Tech W 85-73 Neutral
#8 OSU W 78-75 Semi-Away
#6 Saint Joe's L 73-66 Neutral
#19 Maryland W 82-68 Semi-Away
#16 Stanford L 87-80 Semi-Away
#22 Nevada L 91-72 Neutral
#2 Kentucky L 80-72 Neutral
#18 Georgia L 95-83 Semi-Away
#20 Saint Joe's L 79-78 Home
#4 Arizona L 96-95 Neutral

By my count that's 9 wins out of 39 games (23% win percentage) against top teams the past 9 years.

6 home games.
3 semi-home games.
5 away games
5 semi-away games
20 "neutral" court games.


So there are only 5 true road games on the list compared to 6 true home games. Many of the games are tournament games (maui, NCAA tourney, etc) on neutral sites.








I am under the impression that there are only a hand full of coaches who have a winning record against the top 25 and they are all in the top five conferences who play top 25 teams several times a year.

Can anyone tell me if there are any mid major coaches who have a better record than Few against the top 25 ?? Stevens ? Smart ? Fischer ???

Thanks in advance for any info.

cjm720
03-26-2014, 08:28 AM
I am under the impression that there are only a hand full of coaches who have a winning record against the top 25 and they are all in the top five conferences who play top 25 teams several times a year.

Can anyone tell me if there are any mid major coaches who have a better record than Few against the top 25 ?? Stevens ? Smart ? Fischer ???

Thanks in advance for any info.

There was a similar thread a year or so back, and I thought it relayed that Duke's coach K had a losing record against top 25 teams.

cjm720
03-26-2014, 08:32 AM
I've read some really dumb posts on this board but yours might be the dumbest of all time.

Are you another final four or bust loonie whose sense of entitlement blinds you to the absolutely amazing feat of turning a small Jesuit school in podunk nowhere into a national brand yet it's not enough for you? So your patience has expired and you just can't wait any longer for what you think you deserve? Hey call Mike Roth I'm sure he'll listen to you or better yet show up at the men's banquet and demand the podium to make your case.

You can call yourself a Gonzaga fan but you're not! You're a fan of the program in your head not the one that takes the floor as they're not good enough for you....your dream team and staff are better...

I delete more of these than not but this one stays......

Go!! Zags!!!

A bit harsh, my takeaway from your post is that you don't think Tommy is a capable replacement. While I don't think Few's done yet or there's a better option right now, Tommy is the next to take over and I believe if something happened to Few we would be in good hands (and Few would admit it). Tommy seemed much more active on the sidelines and in huddles this year. I work with business owners on transition planning and this is exactly what is happening at Gonzaga. The earlier you start planning the smoother the transition. They'll let the fans know when the time comes, until then...let's win some more games.

gonzagafan62
03-26-2014, 08:35 AM
A bit harsh, my takeaway from your post is that you don't think Tommy is a capable replacement. While I don't think Few's done yet or there's a better option, Tommy is the next to take over and I believe if something happened to Few we would be in good hands (and Few would admit it). Tommy seemed much more active on the sidelines and in huddles this year. I work with business owners on transition planning and this is exactly what is happening at Gonzaga. The earlier you start planning the smoother the transition. They'll let the fans know when the time comes, until then...let's win some more games.

+1

I am also in the mindset that when Coach Few leaves, Tommy Lloyd is the next best option, and like cjm said, we would be in good hands. Isn't Tommy the "head coach in waiting" anyway? I am fine with it. But Few ain't leaving yet anyway. If something happens, or he decides to leave, then we can discuss Lloyd. I love Lloyd and think he will be a fine head coach once given the opportunity. But Few is the head coach now, so need not to worry.

mattydog73
03-26-2014, 10:15 AM
Actually, the originally cited 21-42 won-loss record (which is correct) is 33 percent. A 21-63 record would be 25 percent.

Ah yes. The perils of working and commenting at the same time. thanks!

bigblahla
03-26-2014, 10:19 AM
A bit harsh, my takeaway from your post is that you don't think Tommy is a capable replacement. While I don't think Few's done yet or there's a better option right now, Tommy is the next to take over and I believe if something happened to Few we would be in good hands (and Few would admit it). Tommy seemed much more active on the sidelines and in huddles this year. I work with business owners on transition planning and this is exactly what is happening at Gonzaga. The earlier you start planning the smoother the transition. They'll let the fans know when the time comes, until then...let's win some more games.

Nothing to do with Tommy if he's still here he's next in line. Nor am I calling anyone names as suggested by the post after mine. My point is cheer for the guys on the floor the actual team not who you want them to be. The way I read it was if CB4 was AD he'd fire Few because he's not getting it done to CB4's desired requirement and failed expectations. Did I miss something?

Go!! Zags!!!

mattydog73
03-26-2014, 10:27 AM
21 wins and 42 losses equals 63 games. I am guessing that's the source of confusion.

yes I was just trying to do too many things at once. sorry!

KStyles
03-26-2014, 10:46 AM
I don't have the statistic for how other non BCS coaches do against the top 25..but last season I posted this....our record against teams that FINISH the year in ken Pom's top 25. I use this metric instead of AP rankings because we usually play the big teams in preconference, when rankings themselves are basically worthless. Ken Pom's end of season rankings are a much better indicator of if a team was actually good or not. This is GU's record against the top 25 over a 10 year span. I think this runs from like 2003-2012. I can no longer access Ken Pom's stuff so can't update.

Looks like it ran through 2011, here's the next 3 years for you.

2012:
#3 Michigan St. L, 74-67 Home
#2 Ohio St. L, 73-66 Neutral

2013:
#21 Kansas St. W, 68-52 Semi-Home
#22 Oklahoma St. W, 69-68 Away
#23 Saint Mary's W, 83-78 Home
#23 Saint Mary's W, 77-60 Away
#17 Wichita St. L, 76-70 Neutral

2014 (season isn't over, so OKST could drop below 25):
#25 Oklahoma St. W, 85-77 Neutral
#2 Arizona L, 84-61 Neutral

ehk 21
03-26-2014, 11:20 AM
I think everyone misses the biggest reason why Gonzaga has a ceiling in what it can accomplish. The problem isn't Mark Few. The problem is Spokane. Don't get me wrong...I was raised in Spokane and I love Spokane, but Spokane is really not a place that a lot of top notch urban basketball stars aspire to as a residence for four years. It's just not a place that's appealing to a large percentage of the very elite recruits you need to have a chance to go to a Final Four.

seacatfan
03-26-2014, 11:26 AM
I think everyone misses the biggest reason why Gonzaga has a ceiling in what it can accomplish. The problem isn't Mark Few. The problem is Spokane. Don't get me wrong...I was raised in Spokane and I love Spokane, but Spokane is really not a place that a lot of top notch urban basketball stars aspire to as a residence for four years. It's just not a place that's appealing to a large percentage of the very elite recruits you need to have a chance to go to a Final Four.

I hear ya, but I wonder how hip of a place Lawrence, KS or Storrs, CT are. Might have as much to do with conference affiliation as it does geography or culture.

mattydog73
03-26-2014, 11:29 AM
My .02 worth on the MF topic: First, he has an excellent offensive mind for the game. He understands how to utilize various sets to get the mismatches / opportunities he wants. That in of itself sets him apart from about 90-95% + of the Division 1 coaches currently employed.

Secondly, the man understands recruiting and what he is after. The simple fact, GU has inherent obstacles to getting the players he wants. Things like location, size, exposure, conference alignment, competition level etc. Do not make the mistake that because the kid ended up at GU it means that is exactly who the staff had in mind all along. If you really think they always get who they want, it is clear you pay no attention at all to their actual recruiting activities. GU always offers top tier kids and, for the most part, never gets them. I have heard, ad-nauseam, that Mark Few and co. knows how to get the proverbial diamond in the rough! To a large degree this analogy is true, however that is much more a result of necessity than it is direct intention.

The truth is, Mark Few has a very clear idea of who would work well in his system and works hard to recruit them. In the end, much more often than not, those kids pick teams like Duke (I am looking at you Grayson Allen) or AZ..or as of late, SDSU. Ultimately, a large percentage of kids succeed at GU because they possess the most important trait a player at GU must poses; BB IQ. There needs to be the ability to learn, adapt and execute the offensive sets and the defensive approach at a very high level. The “why” of this, is due to what I said earlier, GU does not typically get that top tier kid they offer. This means, a significant amount of their success is contingent upon great execution. This is how GU can win a game vs. teams with such an athletic advantage; execution of a very sound game plan. One in which, if done correctly, will not only keep them in the game but also give them an excellent chance to prevail.

This brings us to the two major knocks on Coach Few: Player Rotation and in-game adjustments.

Nothing seems to drive Zag fans crazy as much as these two issues. Why does he play so and so and why does he not put in whomever!? Why can he not see what the other team is doing and adjust his approach? The answer to this is quite simple when you stop and think about what I have pointed out in my statements above. Mark Few believes execution of a solid game plan wins games. In keeping with that, he will put those on the floor he believes can best execute that game plan. ​If you are able to remove emotion from the equation, you will see that Coach Few's approach is very business like and is results driven. It is not an approach that can allow for players to go way off script to achieve desired results. The approach and tactics employed, when executed correctly produce results. This is why some kids sit and why some play, even when at times, it can seem mind boggling that it is so. Coach Few has his parameters in which his program, team, staff and he himself can operate. Stepping outside of those parameters is not his style and IMO, he feels the times he has, he got burned.

In the end, I have seen his "Parameters" grow and expand over the last 5 years or so. I have seen him change his offensive approach to what was a classic, and rigid flex/ motion offense to a much more free flowing 4-1 motion that is more intricate but also depends much more on trust in his players. Heck he even talked at the half time interview regarding his teams poor execution of the "Gap defense" (that is newer as well)

With all that said, execution is still key and will always be the hallmark of his coaching style, and ultimately the reason he will someday, IMO, be a HOF coach.

Next year will be the first time that I can recall, they went after and secured a top tier recruit, Josh Perkins and who should be a top tier, Silas Melson; both, HIGH level players w/ High BB IQ. Added to that a McD AA in KW (on the Olynyk clinic RS prove it plan currently) along with the existing High BB IQ roster, I believe we will finally get to see Mark Few's idea of how GU basketball should be played. :)

-Go Zags!

seacatfan
03-26-2014, 11:40 AM
Next year will be the first time that I can recall, they went after and secured a top tier recruit, Josh Perkins and who should be a top tier, Silas Melson; both, HIGH level players w/ High BB IQ.
-Go Zags!

Nice post. I would add that I believe Bouldin and Daye (and maybe one or 2 others?) were top tier recruits that were lured to GU previously.

webspinnre
03-26-2014, 11:42 AM
Nice post. I would add that I believe Bouldin and Daye (and maybe one or 2 others?) were top tier recruits that were lured to GU previously.

Absolutely. And at the time, Andy Poling was a big-time recruit, before his illness.

bartruff1
03-26-2014, 12:50 PM
Looks like it ran through 2011, here's the next 3 years for you.

2012:
#3 Michigan St. L, 74-67 Home
#2 Ohio St. L, 73-66 Neutral

2013:
#21 Kansas St. W, 68-52 Semi-Home
#22 Oklahoma St. W, 69-68 Away
#23 Saint Mary's W, 83-78 Home
#23 Saint Mary's W, 77-60 Away
#17 Wichita St. L, 76-70 Neutral

2014 (season isn't over, so OKST could drop below 25):
#25 Oklahoma St. W, 85-77 Neutral
#2 Arizona L, 84-61 Neutral

Well, that is fine, but if you have no basis for a comparison it doesn't tell you how well he is doing relative to his peers.

cjm720
03-26-2014, 12:52 PM
good post, Matty.

gonzagafan62
03-26-2014, 01:19 PM
http://www.cbssports.com/collegebasketball/eye-on-college-basketball/19668863/gonzaga-assistant-tommy-lloyd-coachinwaiting

KStyles
03-26-2014, 01:21 PM
Well, that is fine, but if you have no basis for a comparison it doesn't tell you how well he is doing relative to his peers.

Absolutely. I was just helping him complete his list for Few.

bartruff1
03-26-2014, 01:42 PM
Absolutely. I was just helping him complete his list for Few.

I have been googling around and I can't find what I want...there probably are no mid major coaches with a useful measuring stick because the outstanding ones move on...

For example Smart is 8-8 but 5 of those wins were with one team that made it to the final...VCU is something like 8-15 since about 2003, but again, 5 of those were with one team.

I suspect that the people that feel entitled will always see Few as the problem....but that is their problem.

Vanzagger
03-26-2014, 02:30 PM
Let's assume Dower get's a look and maybe the Jazz give David some love, that makes about 14 Zags to play NBA summer league the last 4 years. Put Bouldin and Foster, who I believe are in the D-League right now, on the list and make it 16.

Don't waste bandwidth just to come on here and say Few has done more with less. That is a joke. And I guess it is a good thing Jim Boeheim doesn't know he coaches next to Buffalo.

Zagdawg
03-26-2014, 02:55 PM
So your saying that Few has taken two star/three star kids and walkons and gotten 16 of them into the NBA summer league camps......now that is impressive.

Thank you for pointing that out-- it makes what is being done here that much more amazing.

skan72
03-26-2014, 03:51 PM
Calling someone "not a true fan" is the temper tantrum (na-na-na-na, you're a __________ - we've all done it as kids and continue to see kids do it). Odd that you consider name-calling levelheaded. I don't understand the need to personally attack people with whom you disagree. If we can't discuss and disagree, what is the point of having a message board?

That's what you consider name calling and a temper tantrum? Sheesh. Sorry I didn't use some other phrase, but this was the best one to describe what I was attempting to say. I stand by what I said in my post in its entirety, even though I used a mild phrase that you consider name calling all of twice.


I think everyone misses the biggest reason why Gonzaga has a ceiling in what it can accomplish. The problem isn't Mark Few. The problem is Spokane. Don't get me wrong...I was raised in Spokane and I love Spokane, but Spokane is really not a place that a lot of top notch urban basketball stars aspire to as a residence for four years. It's just not a place that's appealing to a large percentage of the very elite recruits you need to have a chance to go to a Final Four.

I don't know that this is the biggest reason, but it is a factor. Other factors: not being in a power conference where you are playing other bigger, badder teams day-in and day-out (playing better competition constantly makes you better - from the players to the coaching staff, simple logic) and being in a power conference with more national TV exposure would also probably help with recruiting some.

skan72
03-26-2014, 03:52 PM
So your saying that Few has taken two star/three star kids and walkons and gotten 16 of them into the NBA summer league camps......now that is impressive.

Thank you for pointing that out-- it makes what is being done here that much more amazing.

+1

And been to the dance 15 straight times, including four Sweet Sixteens.

seacatfan
03-26-2014, 04:02 PM
Questioning someone's fanhood or declaring they aren't a fan goes nowhere. Just like one person is vastly different than another, the way they root for a team or follow sports can be vastly different. I dated a woman, and her family all seemed to be the same way, they followed sports, they cheered, they seemed like avid fans. But they just didn't seem to get upset. Ever. If their team lost, oh well, as long as they tried hard everything is fine. I get fired up, I get totally crazy sometimes watching a game. Losing never feels okay to me. Fanhood comes in all different varieties.

ZAGLAWQB
03-26-2014, 04:05 PM
THE KEY IS NOT WHAT "HAS BEEN" OR PARTICULAR COACHING ATTRIBUTES/TRAITS.

The truth is Coach Few knows better than anyone the elements necessary to make a final four. He understands limitations and excesses that come into play at our level. I believe that his background and knowledge, and motivation, give us a chance to someday land 8 players that dominate their positions similar to the elite teams in this country. I also admire and believe this to be his goal. It has been done at Marquette, DePaul, etc. I am in this for the "fan longhaul".

Oregonzagnut
03-26-2014, 04:21 PM
+1

And been to the dance 15 straight times, including four Sweet Sixteens.

And in his FIRST 15 seasons as head coach, and with a 80% winning record his first 15 seasons! That combination has NEVER been done before to my knowledge.

The things he has done when compared to people who have equivalent streaks and wins that he has, will be, or are in the Hall of Fame. So by the time he is finished, and the cards all laid out, I believe he will be in the Hall of Fame as the most influential Mid-Major coach in the modern era. The term "The Gonzaga Rule is not used anymore because similar mid-major teams have gone deeper than us but do not have the consistency or streaks. VCU, Butler, George Mason, Wichita St all have final fours between 2006 and 2013. Between 1989 (Seton hall) and 2006 there were no mid majors in final fours.

Gonzaga and Mark Few have proven that the mid majors can escape out of obscurity and into the spotlight with the power schools. Parity will not go away and the difference between a 4 star and a 3 star recruit has never been closer and those really good players are more numerous and spreading out among the mid major conferences because there is just not enough room for them all to get scholarships at the Elite power schools.

Few has created a program that is more attractive to recruits than many of the power schools now. Maybe not the true elite players and athletes, but I don't think he wants to risk any "me-first" cancer in team chemistry and work ethic when 1-2 guys know right off the bat that they will be leaving early. But Few can pick and choose better now and he will continue to recruit the best players who will seek to graduate, win as a team, and MAYBE go pro in 3-4 years.

maynard g krebs
03-26-2014, 04:23 PM
My .02 worth on the MF topic: First, he has an excellent offensive mind for the game. He understands how to utilize various sets to get the mismatches / opportunities he wants. That in of itself sets him apart from about 90-95% + of the Division 1 coaches currently employed.

Secondly, the man understands recruiting and what he is after. The simple fact, GU has inherent obstacles to getting the players he wants. Things like location, size, exposure, conference alignment, competition level etc. Do not make the mistake that because the kid ended up at GU it means that is exactly who the staff had in mind all along. If you really think they always get who they want, it is clear you pay no attention at all to their actual recruiting activities. GU always offers top tier kids and, for the most part, never gets them. I have heard, ad-nauseam, that Mark Few and co. knows how to get the proverbial diamond in the rough! To a large degree this analogy is true, however that is much more a result of necessity than it is direct intention.

The truth is, Mark Few has a very clear idea of who would work well in his system and works hard to recruit them. In the end, much more often than not, those kids pick teams like Duke (I am looking at you Grayson Allen) or AZ..or as of late, SDSU. Ultimately, a large percentage of kids succeed at GU because they possess the most important trait a player at GU must poses; BB IQ. There needs to be the ability to learn, adapt and execute the offensive sets and the defensive approach at a very high level. The “why” of this, is due to what I said earlier, GU does not typically get that top tier kid they offer. This means, a significant amount of their success is contingent upon great execution. This is how GU can win a game vs. teams with such an athletic advantage; execution of a very sound game plan. One in which, if done correctly, will not only keep them in the game but also give them an excellent chance to prevail.

This brings us to the two major knocks on Coach Few: Player Rotation and in-game adjustments.

Nothing seems to drive Zag fans crazy as much as these two issues. Why does he play so and so and why does he not put in whomever!? Why can he not see what the other team is doing and adjust his approach? The answer to this is quite simple when you stop and think about what I have pointed out in my statements above. Mark Few believes execution of a solid game plan wins games. In keeping with that, he will put those on the floor he believes can best execute that game plan. ​If you are able to remove emotion from the equation, you will see that Coach Few's approach is very business like and is results driven. It is not an approach that can allow for players to go way off script to achieve desired results. The approach and tactics employed, when executed correctly produce results. This is why some kids sit and why some play, even when at times, it can seem mind boggling that it is so. Coach Few has his parameters in which his program, team, staff and he himself can operate. Stepping outside of those parameters is not his style and IMO, he feels the times he has, he got burned.

In the end, I have seen his "Parameters" grow and expand over the last 5 years or so. I have seen him change his offensive approach to what was a classic, and rigid flex/ motion offense to a much more free flowing 4-1 motion that is more intricate but also depends much more on trust in his players. Heck he even talked at the half time interview regarding his teams poor execution of the "Gap defense" (that is newer as well)

With all that said, execution is still key and will always be the hallmark of his coaching style, and ultimately the reason he will someday, IMO, be a HOF coach.

Next year will be the first time that I can recall, they went after and secured a top tier recruit, Josh Perkins and who should be a top tier, Silas Melson; both, HIGH level players w/ High BB IQ. Added to that a McD AA in KW (on the Olynyk clinic RS prove it plan currently) along with the existing High BB IQ roster, I believe we will finally get to see Mark Few's idea of how GU basketball should be played. :)

-Go Zags!

One of the best I've read here. Please share your thoughts a bit more often.

maynard g krebs
03-26-2014, 04:27 PM
Let's assume Dower get's a look and maybe the Jazz give David some love, that makes about 14 Zags to play NBA summer league the last 4 years. Put Bouldin and Foster, who I believe are in the D-League right now, on the list and make it 16.

Don't waste bandwidth just to come on here and say Few has done more with less. That is a joke. And I guess it is a good thing Jim Boeheim doesn't know he coaches next to Buffalo.

Few has done more with less. As to what is a joke and a waste of bandwidth, as Patrick Swayze once said in an epically bad B movie, "opinions vary".

Birddog
03-26-2014, 05:15 PM
One of the best I've read here. Please share your thoughts a bit more often.
Agree with maynard, mattydogs post was spot on.

Unbiased
03-26-2014, 05:25 PM
I suspect that the people that feel entitled will always see Few as the problem....but that is their problem.

"People that feel entitled" - What does that mean - I'm curious?

drvenkman05
03-26-2014, 06:00 PM
That's what you consider name calling and a temper tantrum? Sheesh. Sorry I didn't use some other phrase, but this was the best one to describe what I was attempting to say. I stand by what I said in my post in its entirety, even though I used a mild phrase that you consider name calling all of twice.



I don't know that this is the biggest reason, but it is a factor. Other factors: not being in a power conference where you are playing other bigger, badder teams day-in and day-out (playing better competition constantly makes you better - from the players to the coaching staff, simple logic) and being in a power conference with more national TV exposure would also probably help with recruiting some.

Regardless of how many times you used it, you still used it. We're on a message board, a place for discussion. Disagreements will happen, so relax, remember most (if not everyone) loves and support the Zags as much as you do, and leave the name-calling and personal questions at home.

seacatfan
03-26-2014, 06:55 PM
And in his FIRST 15 seasons as head coach, and with a 80% winning record his first 15 seasons! That combination has NEVER been done before to my knowledge.

The things he has done when compared to people who have equivalent streaks and wins that he has, will be, or are in the Hall of Fame. So by the time he is finished, and the cards all laid out, I believe he will be in the Hall of Fame as the most influential Mid-Major coach in the modern era. The term "The Gonzaga Rule is not used anymore because similar mid-major teams have gone deeper than us but do not have the consistency or streaks. VCU, Butler, George Mason, Wichita St all have final fours between 2006 and 2013. Between 1989 (Seton hall) and 2006 there were no mid majors in final fours.

Gonzaga and Mark Few have proven that the mid majors can escape out of obscurity and into the spotlight with the power schools. Parity will not go away and the difference between a 4 star and a 3 star recruit has never been closer and those really good players are more numerous and spreading out among the mid major conferences because there is just not enough room for them all to get scholarships at the Elite power schools.

Few has created a program that is more attractive to recruits than many of the power schools now. Maybe not the true elite players and athletes, but I don't think he wants to risk any "me-first" cancer in team chemistry and work ethic when 1-2 guys know right off the bat that they will be leaving early. But Few can pick and choose better now and he will continue to recruit the best players who will seek to graduate, win as a team, and MAYBE go pro in 3-4 years.

Sorry to split hairs, but I would not call Seton Hall a mid major. They definitely were not a traditional basketball power, but they had been in the Big East Conference for quite a while by this point. It's hard to be a mid major when you are in arguably the best conference in the country. Just after the Hall had their brief stay near the top of the basketball world, UConn started their's, coming from the exact same position of being a non-traditional power in a great conference. UConn just happened to maintain it for 20+ years unlike Seton Hall managed to do.

skan72
03-26-2014, 07:08 PM
Regardless of how many times you used it, you still used it. We're on a message board, a place for discussion. Disagreements will happen, so relax, remember most (if not everyone) loves and support the Zags as much as you do, and leave the name-calling and personal questions at home.

I still don't regard that as a name-calling or a tantrum post, but ok drvenkman05.


Questioning someone's fanhood or declaring they aren't a fan goes nowhere. Just like one person is vastly different than another, the way they root for a team or follow sports can be vastly different. I dated a woman, and her family all seemed to be the same way, they followed sports, they cheered, they seemed like avid fans. But they just didn't seem to get upset. Ever. If their team lost, oh well, as long as they tried hard everything is fine. I get fired up, I get totally crazy sometimes watching a game. Losing never feels okay to me. Fanhood comes in all different varieties.

We'll have to agree to disagree on the definition of "fanness" or "fanhood", then. Cheers.


My .02 worth on the MF topic: First, he has an excellent offensive mind for the game. He understands how to utilize various sets to get the mismatches / opportunities he wants. That in of itself sets him apart from about 90-95% + of the Division 1 coaches currently employed.

Secondly, the man understands recruiting and what he is after. The simple fact, GU has inherent obstacles to getting the players he wants. Things like location, size, exposure, conference alignment, competition level etc. Do not make the mistake that because the kid ended up at GU it means that is exactly who the staff had in mind all along. If you really think they always get who they want, it is clear you pay no attention at all to their actual recruiting activities. GU always offers top tier kids and, for the most part, never gets them. I have heard, ad-nauseam, that Mark Few and co. knows how to get the proverbial diamond in the rough! To a large degree this analogy is true, however that is much more a result of necessity than it is direct intention.

The truth is, Mark Few has a very clear idea of who would work well in his system and works hard to recruit them. In the end, much more often than not, those kids pick teams like Duke (I am looking at you Grayson Allen) or AZ..or as of late, SDSU. Ultimately, a large percentage of kids succeed at GU because they possess the most important trait a player at GU must poses; BB IQ. There needs to be the ability to learn, adapt and execute the offensive sets and the defensive approach at a very high level. The “why” of this, is due to what I said earlier, GU does not typically get that top tier kid they offer. This means, a significant amount of their success is contingent upon great execution. This is how GU can win a game vs. teams with such an athletic advantage; execution of a very sound game plan. One in which, if done correctly, will not only keep them in the game but also give them an excellent chance to prevail.

This brings us to the two major knocks on Coach Few: Player Rotation and in-game adjustments.

Nothing seems to drive Zag fans crazy as much as these two issues. Why does he play so and so and why does he not put in whomever!? Why can he not see what the other team is doing and adjust his approach? The answer to this is quite simple when you stop and think about what I have pointed out in my statements above. Mark Few believes execution of a solid game plan wins games. In keeping with that, he will put those on the floor he believes can best execute that game plan. ​If you are able to remove emotion from the equation, you will see that Coach Few's approach is very business like and is results driven. It is not an approach that can allow for players to go way off script to achieve desired results. The approach and tactics employed, when executed correctly produce results. This is why some kids sit and why some play, even when at times, it can seem mind boggling that it is so. Coach Few has his parameters in which his program, team, staff and he himself can operate. Stepping outside of those parameters is not his style and IMO, he feels the times he has, he got burned.

In the end, I have seen his "Parameters" grow and expand over the last 5 years or so. I have seen him change his offensive approach to what was a classic, and rigid flex/ motion offense to a much more free flowing 4-1 motion that is more intricate but also depends much more on trust in his players. Heck he even talked at the half time interview regarding his teams poor execution of the "Gap defense" (that is newer as well)

With all that said, execution is still key and will always be the hallmark of his coaching style, and ultimately the reason he will someday, IMO, be a HOF coach.

Next year will be the first time that I can recall, they went after and secured a top tier recruit, Josh Perkins and who should be a top tier, Silas Melson; both, HIGH level players w/ High BB IQ. Added to that a McD AA in KW (on the Olynyk clinic RS prove it plan currently) along with the existing High BB IQ roster, I believe we will finally get to see Mark Few's idea of how GU basketball should be played. :)

-Go Zags!

Love this. Could not agree more.

bartruff1
03-26-2014, 07:31 PM
"People that feel entitled" - What does that mean - I'm curious?

People who feel they have a right to something....who feel they deserve something...

maynard g krebs
03-26-2014, 10:22 PM
"People that feel entitled" - What does that mean - I'm curious?

My take is it's people who say, regardless of what someone else has accomplished, "it's not good enough. I'm not satisfied with what you've done. I want more, and I will complain about you until you give me more." And the paradox is that when they get it, they want still more.

WallaWallaZag
03-27-2014, 07:26 PM
My take is it's people who say, regardless of what someone else has accomplished, "it's not good enough. I'm not satisfied with what you've done. I want more, and I will complain about you until you give me more." And the paradox is that when they get it, they want still more.

i have no problem with those wanting more, the final four run...who doesn't after-all??? it's those who EXPECT it and complain about it not happening, put down and criticize others because it doesn't happen, and somehow believe they personally deserve it to happen because... i dunno, cuz they're a gonzaga fan???