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ZagLawGrad
02-02-2015, 12:12 PM
if it happens, IMO, will be attributable in large part to the lack of tough opponents in the WCC. Yes? No?

Of course this is old news. But let's face it, the Zags aren't seeing Duke v. UVA kind of competition so far.

P.S. just keep winning.

gonzagafan62
02-02-2015, 12:18 PM
No. What would be the demise? Lazy passes, poor defense, and an incredible effort by the other team.

seacatfan
02-02-2015, 12:23 PM
Teams from mid major conferences making the Final 4 has happened often enough in the last 10 years that the "playing in a weak conference" excuse is no longer valid as far as I'm concerned.

zagfan24
02-02-2015, 12:28 PM
If playing in a "mid-major" conference didn't hold back Butler, Wichita State, or the 99 Zags for that matter, then it certainly can't be a deal-breaker for this year's bunch.

jazzdelmar
02-02-2015, 12:31 PM
More complicated than that, though that's a factor. Goes to style of play, in game philosophy and moves, lack of a go to superstar (yes we have two go to stars), track record, etc.

scrooner
02-02-2015, 12:32 PM
Every team, except one, is going to have their season come to a horrible and shocking end. How will they ever continue on?

cjm720
02-02-2015, 12:34 PM
More complicated than that, though that's a factor. Goes to style of play, in game philosophy and moves, lack of a go to superstar (yes we have two go to stars), track record, etc.

add: seeding, location, game time...lots of reasons aka excuses. Let's hope we play our best and the ball bounces are way more times than not!!!!!!

sittingon50
02-02-2015, 12:34 PM
Every team, except one, is going to have their season come to a horrible and shocking end. How will they ever continue on?

Back to the Seahawks, are we!?

scrooner
02-02-2015, 12:47 PM
Back to the Seahawks, are we!?

They've got nothing on the Vikings. Boo hoo! Haven't won the Super Bowl in a whole year!

scrooner
02-02-2015, 12:48 PM
This was an interesting prediction in the Simmons Mailbag last week:

Lions lose in gut wrenching fashion to Cowboys.
Cowboys lose in gut wrenching fashion to Packers.
Packers lose in gut wrenching fashion to Seahawks.
Seahawks lose in gut wrenching fashion to Pats.
—Chris, Austin

gonzagafan62
02-02-2015, 12:56 PM
This was an interesting prediction in the Simmons Mailbag last week:

Lions lose in gut wrenching fashion to Cowboys.
Cowboys lose in gut wrenching fashion to Packers.
Packers lose in gut wrenching fashion to Seahawks.
Seahawks lose in gut wrenching fashion to Pats.
—Chris, Austin

All NFC teams that won in dramatic or controversial endings all lost te next week. Toofunny

Vanzagger
02-02-2015, 12:57 PM
Pangos will not let this team lose while he is playing pg. Here is the deal though. We make it to the Great 8 one big declares early. We make it to the FF 2-3 bigs declare early.

Coach will have to learn to deal with this and plan accordingly. I have complete trust in Big Ryan Edwards. Get to work on the Nunez situation, have a couple bangers lined up, and next year we make another deep run.

CDC84
02-02-2015, 01:05 PM
The one thing about this group is that I would be shocked if they don't survive the first weekend. The team is too hard to defend on short notice and has too much talent. They also defend reasonably well. Also, the first two games will be in Seattle. That doesn't guarantee anything, but it helps.

My thinking is that once they get over the sweet 16 hump, the Zags will feel a sense of relief and just go out and play. That could make them very dangerous.

As I keep saying, as Richard Fox keeps saying, etc., the way to improve while playing in a league like the WCC is to compete against yourself. The Zags have to establish goals that are independent of opponent. They have to establish goals that are indepedent of winning and losing. I like what Tommy Lloyd said about the team wanting to be a top 20 defensive team. The staff needs to keep coming up with stuff like that to keep these guys sharp.

That being said, this team has enough experience to know by now that the Santa Clara/USF road trip has been the hardest league road trip in recent years for the Zags. The Leavey Center on Thursday is going to be an absolute madhouse. And for whatever reason, the Dons just come to life when playing the Zags at War Memorial Gym. The Zags better be ready for both games. They can't just play 20 minutes of solid basketball and then take a vacation.

DixieZag
02-02-2015, 01:16 PM
The one thing about this group is that I would be shocked if they don't survive the first weekend. The team is too hard to defend on short notice and has too much talent. They also defend reasonably well. Also, the first two games will be in Seattle. That doesn't guarantee anything, but it helps.

My thinking is that once they get over the sweet 16 hump, the Zags will feel a sense of relief and just go out and play. That could make them very dangerous.

As I keep saying, as Richard Fox keeps saying, etc., the way to improve while playing in a league like the WCC is to compete against yourself. The Zags have to establish goals that are independent of opponent. They have to establish goals that are indepedent of winning and losing. I like what Tommy Lloyd said about the team wanting to be a top 20 defensive team. The staff needs to keep coming up with stuff like that to keep these guys sharp.

That being said, this team has enough experience to know by now that the Santa Clara/USF road trip has been the hardest league road trip in recent years for the Zags. The Leavey Center on Thursday is going to be an absolute madhouse. And for whatever reason, the Dons just come to life when playing the Zags at War Memorial Gym. The Zags better be ready for both games. They can't just play 20 minutes of solid basketball and then take a vacation.

The second game of the tournament is the key. Win that and everything is laid out for them. And, I think there's just too much experience to cough up a hairball in that second game.

Good point about this weekend. For some reason, I am always terrified of Leavey, without a solid Sam 3, we lose last year there. USF and refs bailing out guys driving right into a pack of Zags still haunt dreams. I could easily see us getting in foul trouble this weekend and having a "sporty" time of it. Why? Well, why not? It's the WCC "foul a minute" games that can trip us up.

RenoZag
02-02-2015, 01:18 PM
If it happens, IMO, will be attributable in large part to the lack of tough opponents in the WCC. Yes? No?



I think it would be a small part. Zags have 8 regular season and 2, probably 3, WCC tourney opportunities for our familiar opponents to take their best shot. The conference brethren are not UVA or Duke-like, I agree, but I contend the effort and determination GU will face in those contests, especially the road games at SCU, USF, UOP, and SMC, will be considerable. The hostile crowds are also a good test of the Zags' mettle. Coach Few pointed to the upcoming road WCC games during an interview with Jim Meehan in the 2/3/15 S-R for a brief article in which Meehan compared and contrasted the 2013 team to this year's edition:


The Zags’ ability to focus on the present has been “great,” Few said. “We haven’t really let our guard down. We’ve gotten sloppy at the end of some games. Pepperdine, it was just missing free throws and a pretty poor defensive effort in the second half. But we have four more games on the road against inspired teams in front of sell-out crowds. So that’s to be continued.”

Winning the regular season title is a benchmark to savor (when it happens). Downplaying the level of competition unnecessarily diminishes that achievement.

ZagDad84
02-02-2015, 01:19 PM
The unfortunate thing is that Kentucky, Louisville, Connecticut, UCLA, UNC, and even the beloved Dukies have gotten beat in the first round by un-ranked, small or mid-major schools. Because these schools have won the tournament before, their indiscretions or poor performances are often overlooked by many. Throw in a final four appearance or title every 4-5 years, we don't care if you lose in the first round or maybe even miss the tournament all together. If GU wants the naysayers off their backs they are going to have to make it to a tournament final or at least a final four.

Anybody can beat anybody if the shots are falling. Remember when Wyoming beat GU in the first round a few years back. If people are patient, move the ball around and shoot a fantastic percentage from outside (particularly the 3) anybody can lose to anybody even if your are from the ACC, SEC, Big-12, etc. If you are frequently seeded #1 & #2 (Duke, UK, UNC, Louisville, Kansas, etc.) it is much easier to get to the sweet 16 and further than if you are seeded #4-7. If you are from the big 5 conferences, particularly the conferences back East it is much more likely that you will get a higher seed than if you play out West.

GU has the talent to make it to the final four. If we are given a #1 or #2 seed that job will be easier than if we are given a #3-5 seed. If the team sets on its heels and plays like the Pepperdine game (can't shoot free throws) or like we did in the last five minutes against Memphis, we could be out in any round. If GU wins out I think they will get a #1 seed. Lose even a single game, I think we are down to a #2 or #3 seed and it only gets worse with additional losses. If GU plays to their potential, they will be a very difficult out for anybody come March.

ZagDad

FuManShoes
02-02-2015, 01:22 PM
I'm more worried about the Zags missing free throws than being "exposed" because they weren't tested more in the WCC. Except for maybe Kentucky or another super long and athletic team, the only thing that might stop this team ... is this team.

CDC84
02-02-2015, 01:34 PM
Well, you can certainly say that Pepperdine tested Gonzaga in Malibu.

I just don't want to end up at the Kentucky Invitational in Cleveland. That's all I ask. I'd rather be a 3 seed in the south than a 2 in the midwest.

seasontixholder
02-02-2015, 01:37 PM
I'm not worried about anything. Rack 'em up and play. We're pretty good, and any game will be interesting.

229SintoZag
02-02-2015, 01:45 PM
if it happens, IMO, will be attributable in large part to the lack of tough opponents in the WCC. Yes? No?

Of course this is old news. But let's face it, the Zags aren't seeing Duke v. UVA kind of competition so far.

P.S. just keep winning.

Good point. Zags have never faced Duke in the tournament. The one time the Zags faced Virginia, the Zags beat them.

I agree that the WCC does not prepare us for the likes of Wyoming, Davidson, Wichita State, or Nevada. And it certainly doesn't prepare us for the likes of a school like BYU.

Right???

rennis
02-02-2015, 01:50 PM
I agree that the WCC does not prepare us for the likes of Wyoming, Davidson, Wichita State, or Nevada. And it certainly doesn't prepare us for the likes of a school like BYU.

Right???


great post!!!!!

ZagLawGrad
02-02-2015, 02:08 PM
Good point. Zags have never faced Duke in the tournament. The one time the Zags faced Virginia, the Zags beat them.

I agree that the WCC does not prepare us for the likes of Wyoming, Davidson, Wichita State, or Nevada. And it certainly doesn't prepare us for the likes of a school like BYU.

Right???

I think you are right, except of course we all know BYU is in the WCC. And a pretty weak team to date.

Zagger
02-02-2015, 02:39 PM
Go Zags! Beat Santa Clara! D-hoof, D-mane and just plain D-stroy the Broncos w/ D :)
http://www.fowlplaces.com/zags/beatsantaclara.png
All while envisioning them as your next NCAA Tourney opponent! :)

WallaWallaZag
02-02-2015, 08:58 PM
"Good point. Zags have never faced Duke in the tournament. The one time the Zags faced Virginia, the Zags beat them.

I agree that the WCC does not prepare us for the likes of Wyoming, Davidson, Wichita State, or Nevada. And it certainly doesn't prepare us for the likes of a school like BYU."

although the wcc competition obviously isn't ideal, i agree with those that don't think it is a legit excuse considering the number of mid-major teams that have made final fours...i do think that coaching philosophy and/or strategy may play a role however...mark few's refusal to put all his eggs into the march basket so to speak may mean that there isn't enough focus on peaking for the tournament (or maybe i should say the zags tend to peak for the wrong tournament).

Zagdawg
02-02-2015, 09:08 PM
Hmmmm---so in the years when we get to the sweet 16 the focus and when we peak is different than in the other years when we don't get that far---interesting philosophy/strategy idea---but I'm not buying it.

The team wants to win every game regardless if it is at the beginning of the year or late in the year.

Go Zags

WallaWallaZag
02-02-2015, 11:34 PM
Hmmmm---so in the years when we get to the sweet 16 the focus and when we peak is different than in the other years when we don't get that far---interesting philosophy/strategy idea---but I'm not buying it. The team wants to win every game regardless if it is at the beginning of the year or late in the year.

of course the team wants to win every game...but is it best prepared to do so in march is the question? the zags have been blown out in the ncaa several times...and in each case i don't think the opponent was that much better than the zags. to me, that is an indicator that the zags were not playing to their potential. obviously, each edition of the zags is different, but based on my personal eye test, i don't feel like the zags have brought their "a" game often enough in march and to me that's on the coach.

and it's been a long time since the zags were in the sweet sixteen.

ZagsGoZags
02-02-2015, 11:49 PM
I think you are right, except of course we all know BYU is in the WCC. And a pretty weak team to date.

I think what he meant was that when BYU was not in the WCC they beat us in the NCAA tournament a few years back

JPtheBeasta
02-03-2015, 04:56 AM
As I keep saying, as Richard Fox keeps saying, etc., the way to improve while playing in a league like the WCC is to compete against yourself. The Zags have to establish goals that are independent of opponent. They have to establish goals that are indepedent of winning and losing. I like what Tommy Lloyd said about the team wanting to be a top 20 defensive team. The staff needs to keep coming up with stuff like that to keep these guys sharp.



I would add that the Zags are going against very good players every day... in practice. Our backups have length and athleticism, and we have a very hard-nosed defensive player in Connor Griffin. Our offense gets tested. The team defense has been solid, and this might be a testament to our offensive depth on the bench, as well. The Zags really have been competing against themselves in the more simplistic sense of the idea above.

JPtheBeasta
02-03-2015, 04:58 AM
I think you are right, except of course we all know BYU is in the WCC. And a pretty weak team to date.

I think he was being sarcastic... all of those teams beat us in March and aren't traditional powerhouse conference schools.

Reborn
02-03-2015, 05:49 AM
I don't believe that the demise of the Zags in the NCAA tournament is caused by the Zags being in the WCC conference. In my opinion the Zags have had only two teams that were the kind of team that makes it to the Elite 8. The '99 team did make it and the 2005-06 Zags with Adam Morrison et al did not make it. There have been several other really good teams that did make it to the Sweet 16. For any team to make it to the Sweet 16 they have to be a dang good team. I mean a really good team. I think most fans seem to not understand how difficult it is to make it to the Sweet 16. I believe there were five or six Zag teams that made it that far, and one made it to the Elite 8. And they were the best Zag team to date. These really good teams, and one great team all came out of the WCC. I know St Mary's also made it to a Sweet 16 and San Diego did too (all in the last 10 years only). In the end we have to admit that Gonzaga has not had a team that yet who was quite good enough to make it to the Final Four.

So we are back to this year's team. This Zag team also comes out of the WCC, and their success or failure will not be because they are in the WCC. The Zags have had great success with really good teams in their OOC schedule including a game with the #3 ranked Arizona, on the road. This is the best Gonzaga team ever, in the opinion of many. And I believe that this team is good enough to make it to the Final Four. If they don't make it, it will not be because they're in the WCC. There are a fair number of GREAT teams that will be in the tournament this year (and in fact there are every year). Teams like Kentucky, Duke, Arizona, Wisconsin, Virginia, Kansas, Villanova, are great teams, and Gonzaga will have to face one of them to make it to the Final Four. Other teams like Louisville, Notre Dame, Iowa State, Northern Iowa, Witchita St., North Carolina, Utah, West Virginia, Maryland and Ohio State are also very good teams, and Gonzaga, more then likely will have to also beat one of these teams. If Gonzaga is the best Gonzaga team ever they will make it to the Final Four this year. I have believed from the very beginning of the season that this team will make it to the Final Four. Step by step we have reached this point in our journey to the Final Four. The Zags are 22-1 and ranked second in the country. There is nothing that will convince me that the Zags won't win the rest of their conference games and also win the WCC Tournament. I think there are some doubters in ZagNation and it's understandable. There are always doubters in every community. So that's not a surprise. And there are those that Believe. There are way more believers then doubters, especially this year. I feel there is a pretty fair number of fans who believe that this is the year the Zags will make it to the Final Four because it's the best Zag Team ever.

Go Zags!!!
One game at a time!

dan71w
02-03-2015, 06:32 AM
In my opinion i do not think it is the wcc competition that is the cause of our perceived failures in the tournament. i would however concede that it is the way our games are reffed that does hurt our teams when we get to the big tournament.

first looking over the years i believe the Zags have performed admirably considering we do not get the burger boys. we usually always perform to seed. the 2012 team was actually a fluke with being a one seed at that time, i never thought we where that good considering we rode on Olynyk's back so heavily. but to go out the way it happened did sting.
this years team is just so well balanced, a weapon at every spot with reliable weapons coming off the bench, i have never seen a team this balanced in offensive fire power. our D is the best D i have ever seen the zags play. i really think the only 2 things can stop us this year our guys getting into foul trouble because the games being called differently throwing there rhythm off, or we have an incredible off shooting night and the opposing team gets lit on fire.

Shanachie
02-03-2015, 06:33 AM
of course the team wants to win every game...but is it best prepared to do so in march is the question? the zags have been blown out in the ncaa several times...and in each case i don't think the opponent was that much better than the zags. to me, that is an indicator that the zags were not playing to their potential. obviously, each edition of the zags is different, but based on my personal eye test, i don't feel like the zags have brought their "a" game often enough in march and to me that's on the coach.

and it's been a long time since the zags were in the sweet sixteen.

I don't think your recollection corresponds with reality. The Zags have been blown out a few times, but you have to go back a long way to find a blow out loss to a team that wasn't clearly better. Arizona in '14 was a 1 seet to GU's 8. BYU in '11 was a 3 seed, GU was 11. 2010 with Syracuse was another 1/8 game. North Carolina in 2009 was, by seed anyway, a closer match up - 1 vs. 4. But Carolina won every tourney game by double digits that year, so it's pretty hard to argue that they weren't clearly better.

Over that same span, the Zags played really well in many tournament games. For example, beating the OSU team last year that almost everyone had penciled in for a matchup with Arizona in the next round, blowing out West Virginia in the 7/10 game in 2012 and then losing a close one to 2 seed Ohio State; beating 6 seed St. Johns as an 11 seed by 15 in 2011.

TheGonzagaFactor
02-03-2015, 06:44 AM
Pangos will not let this team lose while he is playing pg. Here is the deal though. We make it to the Great 8 one big declares early. We make it to the FF 2-3 bigs declare early.

Coach will have to learn to deal with this and plan accordingly. I have complete trust in Big Ryan Edwards. Get to work on the Nunez situation, have a couple bangers lined up, and next year we make another deep run.

The only way anyone declares early is if Karno puts us on his back and wins us a national championship. I'm talking dominant post game, mid range excellence, no one scoring on him... including Kentucky. No way Wiltjer declares early (very low chance he's ever an NBA guy, period) and no way Sabonis declares early. Karno and Sabonis haven't shown enough outside of dunking and deep post game to be decent draft picks. They both appear to have a reasonable mid range game, but they've made a total of like 4 shots outside of 5 feet from the basket combined in their careers.

I think our inside situation will be better next year with 2 "4s" and 2 "5s" instead of just one center. Like 2012-13 but the depth guys will have more experience.

Zagdawg
02-03-2015, 06:53 AM
Some more games where Zags were not expected to get very far-- a 12 seed and took down 3 seeded Virginia on the way to a sweet 16 and when the Zags were a 9 seed and took down Cincinnati and took #1 seed Arizona to double OT 96-95 (instant tourney classic).

So either they are prepared some years and in others their are not-- or it really matters who they match up against.

bartruff1
02-03-2015, 08:11 AM
Some of my favorite whines.....oldies but goodies that get better over time...can't wait to open the 2015 year...

Vanzagger
02-03-2015, 08:28 AM
The only way anyone declares early is if Karno puts us on his back and wins us a national championship. I'm talking dominant post game, mid range excellence, no one scoring on him... including Kentucky. No way Wiltjer declares early (very low chance he's ever an NBA guy, period) and no way Sabonis declares early. Karno and Sabonis haven't shown enough outside of dunking and deep post game to be decent draft picks. They both appear to have a reasonable mid range game, but they've made a total of like 4 shots outside of 5 feet from the basket combined in their careers.

I think our inside situation will be better next year with 2 "4s" and 2 "5s" instead of just one center. Like 2012-13 but the depth guys will have more experience.

Karno was the best Big in the Nation at the end of last year.

As long as Sabonis doesn't switch sports and make a run at the UFC he is a lock

Only a handful of guys on this planet with Wiltjer's size and skill.



For those of you who are fascinated with titles the 3 above are all Burger Boys

rennis
02-03-2015, 02:50 PM
Karno was the best Big in the Nation at the end of last year.



I love Karno, but no way was he the best big in the Nation at the end last year. There is another big K guy, he played in the Final Four, just to mention one...

Vanzagger
02-03-2015, 04:36 PM
He shot 65% his last 11 games. Ended the year with double doubles vs Ok St & Arizona

WallaWallaZag
02-03-2015, 06:36 PM
I don't think your recollection corresponds with reality. The Zags have been blown out a few times, but you have to go back a long way to find a blow out loss to a team that wasn't clearly better. Arizona in '14 was a 1 seet to GU's 8. BYU in '11 was a 3 seed, GU was 11. 2010 with Syracuse was another 1/8 game. North Carolina in 2009 was, by seed anyway, a closer match up - 1 vs. 4. But Carolina won every tourney game by double digits that year, so it's pretty hard to argue that they weren't clearly better.

wasn't saying that the zags were better than any of those teams, but they looked out of their league in those games (2010,2011,2014)... despite the final score, they at least looked like they belonged against unc in '09 and played probably their best round of 32 game in '12 against sullinger and osu. i guess i should rephrase and state that the zags have a recent habit of looking impressive in the round of 64 only to falter in the round of 32...logical since competition steps up a notch, but imo zags haven't done as well with the short turnaround in the 2nd game (blowing out st.johns only to get blown out by byu, same with okstate & arizona).

seacatfan
02-03-2015, 07:03 PM
wasn't saying that the zags were better than any of those teams, but they looked out of their league in those games (2010,2011,2014)... despite the final score, they at least looked like they belonged against unc in '09 and played probably their best round of 32 game in '12 against sullinger and osu. i guess i should rephrase and state that the zags have a recent habit of looking impressive in the round of 64 only to falter in the round of 32...logical since competition steps up a notch, but imo zags haven't done as well with the short turnaround in the 2nd game (blowing out st.johns only to get blown out by byu, same with okstate & arizona).

Totally agree. The losses to Syracuse, BYU and Arizona the Zags had the deer in headlights look. Seemed unprepared to compete in those games. While there was a talent gap between the teams in those games, it wasn't as big as the scoring margins indicated. Occasionally there are games (any time they play Duke, for example) where it just seems like the GU players don't believe they can win the game.

Zags11
02-03-2015, 08:33 PM
Will end this march.

Shanachie
02-04-2015, 07:26 AM
wasn't saying that the zags were better than any of those teams, but they looked out of their league in those games (2010,2011,2014)... despite the final score, they at least looked like they belonged against unc in '09 and played probably their best round of 32 game in '12 against sullinger and osu. i guess i should rephrase and state that the zags have a recent habit of looking impressive in the round of 64 only to falter in the round of 32...logical since competition steps up a notch, but imo zags haven't done as well with the short turnaround in the 2nd game (blowing out st.johns only to get blown out by byu, same with okstate & arizona).

Fair enough. The only thing I would say is that, as a 7 or 8 line lower seed, they were out of their league against those teams by just about any measure - talent, what they accomplished during the season, etc.

GoZags
02-04-2015, 07:37 AM
Totally agree. The losses to Syracuse, BYU and Arizona the Zags had the deer in headlights look. Seemed unprepared to compete in those games. While there was a talent gap between the teams in those games, it wasn't as big as the scoring margins indicated. Occasionally there are games (any time they play Duke, for example) where it just seems like the GU players don't believe they can win the game.

Like the MSG game in '06 where Duke had to come from behind to beat the Zags?
Gonzaga didn't 'believe' they could have won that game?

http://scores.espn.go.com/ncb/recap?gameId=263552250

seacatfan
02-04-2015, 08:50 AM
Like the MSG game in '06 where Duke had to come from behind to beat the Zags?
Gonzaga didn't 'believe' they could have won that game?

http://scores.espn.go.com/ncb/recap?gameId=263552250

My memory has failed me again. I know they've played Duke a couple times and lost both, I thought each was a blowout win. I was wrong. 21-20 at halftime? Egads, that must've been ugly.

CDC84
02-04-2015, 09:28 AM
My memory has failed me again. I know they've played Duke a couple times and lost both, I thought each was a blowout win. I was wrong. 21-20 at halftime? Egads, that must've been ugly.

Fortunately most fans missed 90% of the first half. In fact, they may have missed the entire 1st half. The game before went into triple OT or something. Back in them days they didn't move games to ESPN News.

seacatfan
02-04-2015, 09:46 AM
Fortunately most fans missed 90% of the first half. In fact, they may have missed the entire 1st half. The game before went into triple OT or something. Back in them days they didn't move games to ESPN News.

Now that you mention it, I think somehow I was able to watch the first half. I think Kuso played well off the bench and that was about the only thing that went well for the Zags.

raise the zag
02-04-2015, 09:52 AM
Coach Few's rhetoric every season has something to do with it, imho.

Players(& kids) need to believe they are destined to accomplish something and have a fighting chance at achieving it.

Shoot for the stars, and settle for the moon if you must.

Coach Few says the same thing:

"Our goal at Gonzaga is to win the WCC. Making the NCAA Tournament is gravy. Advancing is luck and match-ups, yet again, our focus is to win this underrated Conference". (paraphrasing the same 'ol same 'ol)

Ok, fine.

That is a given. EVERY single team wants to win their respective conference, yet no a single Top-15 program talks like this -- actually almost the complete opposite.

"Our goal is to win the National Championship. If we win our conference on the way to the ultimate goal, even better, yet we want to advance to the NCAA Tournament and go deep."

-- so said every Coach and Player currently in the Top 10.

Not Coach Few. He tells his players to win the WCC and its a crap shoot after that. YES, I agree we should play in the present and our goal should be to win our Conference, yet why not tell these kids to shoot even higher...

Maybe mental, sub-conscious complacency sets in following WCC Tournament?

Not saying we don't want to win, yet are we already satisfied by making the Tournament? Do our Coaches go on cruise control after accomplishing their one and only goal?

I don't know, yet I do know that so-called "luck" in the tournament is preparation & inspiration meets opportunity.

INSPIRE to play at the highest level in the highest moment. I feel we play with more intensity and "all in" mentality in WCC Tournament in Vegas than we do in NCAA's, including Coach.

My hope is we are thinking Final 4 or bust. At least I hope the players are, even if its not a bust, at least believe it. I know Coach Few isn't -- why? -- because he's said so himself numerous times.

Every interview re: NCAA Tournament play he states our goal was to win the Conference and if we somehow, someway advance, then so be it, its just a bit of icing on the cake. Just look how disappointed his interviewer is when they want to talk NCAA, Coach Few won't really acknowledge it. Yes, he likes to play in it, yet he's point blank stated, its not our #1 goal.

I would think, at this point, we would shoot for more, tell our kids to shoot for more as well. Celebrate the fact we can win our conference, yet tell them there is more to the season. The post-season.

We should be incredibly honored by making the NCAA Tournament and a ton of luck and match-ups do play a role, yet I've always said we treat the game and coach the game like its a Thursday night game in late January.

I'm not seeing players foul out if they have to or being played til the very end, to win. Riding hot hands, staying with your system, yet going all out. Freaking out, inspiring, playing with fire, coaching with fire, go all in when it matters most.

I honestly believe many of our woes and demise rest in more intrinsic issues than anything. The intangibles.

We have the players yet at the end of the day, they still take on their Coaches mentality and goals and personality.

seacatfan
02-04-2015, 10:06 AM
Raise the Zag--I agree with you largely. I've been told the culture at Kansas is similar to GU, they pride themselves on winning the Big 12 every year more so than whatever they accomplish in the Tourney. I had a hard time accepting that to be true of a school with the history and tradition of KU. There's something to be said for consistency, but most casual fans across the country are only interested in what happens in March. They could care less who won the Big 12, or the ACC, or the Pac 12 etc. Probably more often than not the National Champion doesn't win their conference regular season. I definitely agree with you, I don't like the rhetoric about the Tourney being a crapshoot and taking an "oh well" approach if they lose during the 1st weekend. Everybody loses early sometimes, nobody goes to the Elite 8 or Final 4 every year, but NEVER getting there starts to get bothersome. The fact that George Mason, Butler (x2), VCU and Wichita St. have all gotten to the final weekend in recent years should absolutely beg the question "Why not Gonzaga?"

gonzagafan62
02-04-2015, 10:14 AM
Raise the Zag--I agree with you largely. I've been told the culture at Kansas is similar to GU, they pride themselves on winning the Big 12 every year more so than whatever they accomplish in the Tourney. I had a hard time accepting that to be true of a school with the history and tradition of KU. There's something to be said for consistency, but most casual fans across the country are only interested in what happens in March. They could care less who won the Big 12, or the ACC, or the Pac 12 etc. Probably more often than not the National Champion doesn't win their conference regular season. I definitely agree with you, I don't like the rhetoric about the Tourney being a crapshoot and taking an "oh well" approach if they lose during the 1st weekend. Everybody loses early sometimes, nobody goes to the Elite 8 or Final 4 every year, but NEVER getting there starts to get bothersome. The fact that George Mason, Butler (x2), VCU and Wichita St. have all gotten to the final weekend in recent years should absolutely beg the question "Why not Gonzaga?"

Aren't those the same people who ONLY watch March Madness? And the same people that claim that they have a team? If you only care about March, and only watch March, I don't call you a "fan" .... I call you a follower because your friends get hyped up about something, and you must know what happens. I pride myself on 16 going on 17 straight years in that dance. I think only four of those times did we lose in the first round. That's pride.

When people start realizing that we weren't the better team in all of those games besides Nevada, Wyoming and Wichita State, they will start to rest easier. But I know that won't ever happen.

seacatfan
02-04-2015, 10:30 AM
Aren't those the same people who ONLY watch March Madness? And the same people that claim that they have a team? If you only care about March, and only watch March, I don't call you a "fan" .... I call you a follower because your friends get hyped up about something, and you must know what happens. I pride myself on 16 going on 17 straight years in that dance. I think only four of those times did we lose in the first round. That's pride.

When people start realizing that we weren't the better team in all of those games besides Nevada, Wyoming and Wichita State, they will start to rest easier. But I know that won't ever happen.

Okay, people who don't follow college bball until March starts don't count. The point I was trying to make is...how many people would know off the top of their head who won the ACC each year for the last 10 years (that's just random to make a point)? I don't know, but it definitely hasn't been just Duke and North Carolina each year. UNC won Titles in '05 and '09 and Duke did in '10. I'm pretty sure at least 2 or those 3 years (every one except '09) the eventual National Champion didn't even win their conference. It's apples and oranges with BCS conferences compared to the WCC, but who in their right mind wouldn't take finishing 2nd or 3rd in their conference if they could win a National Championship vs. winning the conference, but not making a deep run in the Tourney? Like I said, consistency is fine, but getting the trophy, cutting down the nets, getting your name in the record book and living on forever as a part of history...nothing else compares to that.

Zagceo
02-04-2015, 10:34 AM
The way I view Few and the "crapshoot" comments…… it's a defense mechanism to protect his players.

Lets put it this way ……I hope Fews comment about tourney being "crapshoot" was the catalyst for Domas choosing GU and proving him wrong!:)

bballbeachbum
02-04-2015, 11:31 AM
if it happens, IMO, will be attributable in large part to the lack of tough opponents in the WCC. Yes? No?

Of course this is old news. But let's face it, the Zags aren't seeing Duke v. UVA kind of competition so far.

P.S. just keep winning.

playing in the WCC comes with some realities. They're not excuses. But they can be overcome as demonstrated by different teams throughout the years, including the Zags.

this thread has done a nice job illuminating the challenges I think, both regarding the styles and teams in the conference and its officiating. It's not excuses, these are realities to be overcome. of course it can be done, but how can something be overcome if its existence is denied? makes no sense to me.



as for matchups, check out this article http://insider.espn.go.com/blog/giant-killers/post/_/id/348/key-potential-matchups-for-giants-killers. the committee knows these things and so rewards or challenges teams when they announce their field, and its their field how they want it. they know what they're doing with the 12-5 matchup for example, and much more seems to me, and even more so now that sooooooo much money is involved.


yes, the Zags have been bounced hard a few times, but the Syracuse and NC matchups were not good ones (read the article if you can) and NC as good a college team as there has been, and I'm not the only old fart who believes this. the Zags response has been to become way better than those renditions of themselves which got hammered by the best teams in college that year. Again, it's not an excuse, it's a reality the Zags must overcome; they will see some tough matchups.

but so what? that's my feeling on this stuff. Yes, there's some hurdles to jump, so what? let's ante up with eyes wide open and overcome it. been done before, can be done again. do it

cjm720
02-04-2015, 12:35 PM
The way I view Few and the "crapshoot" comments…… it's a defense mechanism to protect his players.

Lets put it this way ……I hope Fews comment about tourney being "crapshoot" was the catalyst for Domas choosing GU and proving him wrong!:)

The context actually came from a conversation he had with Billy Donovan and that was Billy's take - even on the heels back to back championships.

bartruff1
02-04-2015, 12:43 PM
I think Few has the intelligence and experience to know what the NCAA Tourney is all about and hardly needs a 18 year old who has never been there to show him he is wrong.

If they win, it is a krap shoot...if they lose it is a krap shoot..... the players know that..

spike_jr
02-04-2015, 02:41 PM
I have heard Few on his show use the term "crap Shoot". It really drives me up a wall and it sounds more like an excuse than anything else. So let me ask this, why is a game in the tournament any more of a "crap shoot" than the previous 30+ games that you played that year? Every week you have do prepare for a different team, with different styles and personnel. For example, who is healthy? Who is available? Where is the game being played (at home, far from home, large hostile crowd, etc)? I would much rather hear that the team has talent, has been working hard, and our goal is to win every game we play, including the last one!

cjm720
02-04-2015, 02:46 PM
I have heard Few on his show use the term "crap Shoot". It really drives me up a wall and it sounds more like an excuse than anything else. So let me ask this, why is a game in the tournament any more of a "crap shoot" than the previous 30+ games that you played that year? Every week you have do prepare for a different team, with different styles and personnel. For example, who is healthy? Who is available? Where is the game being played (at home, far from home, large hostile crowd, etc)? I would much rather hear that the team has talent, has been working hard, and our goal is to win every game we play, including the last one!

Because they're all good...parity. On any given Sunday or some equivalent saying....

Zagceo
02-04-2015, 03:56 PM
I think Few has the intelligence and experience to know what the NCAA Tourney is all about and hardly needs a 18 year old who has never been there to show him he is wrong.

If they win, it is a krap shoot...if they lose it is a krap shoot..... the players know that..

You think ……but you don't know…..then there's still a possibility :)

It was a joke bart …

bartruff1
02-04-2015, 04:00 PM
When you krap out you are done..you are out of the game.....there aren't 15 or 20 or 30 games left to play...Few doesn't have to offer any excuses to the people that hired him and pay his salary...

DixieZag
02-04-2015, 04:07 PM
There's no doubt we've run into some freight trains. But what I am more concerned about is the tentativeness that we've also seen on many occasions, where we are playing not to lose more than playing to win. Yes, Wichita hit however many 3s in a row. But they started hitting those threes the same minute we took the air out of the ball and I don't think it was a coincidence. I think the same thing happened at Memphis last year, a mini-version happened at Arizona this year, happened a little against Dayton in the Maui, UCLA....

If we are honest, it is obvious the moment we see it. Fear of losing.

Zagdawg
02-04-2015, 04:08 PM
In the dance --one injury, one cold shooting night at the FT line, one ref who decides that every time your player looks at an opposing player --it is a foul, one player on the opposing team who for the season has only made 2 3-pt shots all year long decides he is going to go for the three point record in a game and makes 9--when that happens there is no game next week- the season is over. Little different mid season vs. in the dance where anything can happen and it ends your season.

Angelo Roncalli
02-04-2015, 04:12 PM
Few's not the only one to use the term. Some context...

https://twitter.com/garyparrishcbs/status/535296428516851714

http://hawkeyenation.com/forum/showthread.php?27092-NCAA-Tournament-is-a-Crap-Shoot&

http://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1980&dat=19980319&id=47UoAAAAIBAJ&sjid=XgYGAAAAIBAJ&pg=2249,5059794

http://www.custercountynews.com/cms/news/story-45082.html

http://www.midmajormadness.com/2014/3/16/5516070/2014-ncaa-tournament-preview-west-region-arizona-gonzaga-byu-oklahoma-oregon-creighton

http://www.providencejournal.com/sports/college/content/20140328-uri-coach-hurley-a-bit-surprised-by-daytons-ncaa-tourney-success.ece

gonzagafan62
02-04-2015, 04:20 PM
Okay, people who don't follow college bball until March starts don't count. The point I was trying to make is...how many people would know off the top of their head who won the ACC each year for the last 10 years (that's just random to make a point)? I don't know, but it definitely hasn't been just Duke and North Carolina each year. UNC won Titles in '05 and '09 and Duke did in '10. I'm pretty sure at least 2 or those 3 years (every one except '09) the eventual National Champion didn't even win their conference. It's apples and oranges with BCS conferences compared to the WCC, but who in their right mind wouldn't take finishing 2nd or 3rd in their conference if they could win a National Championship vs. winning the conference, but not making a deep run in the Tourney? Like I said, consistency is fine, but getting the trophy, cutting down the nets, getting your name in the record book and living on forever as a part of history...nothing else compares to that.

Right I totally agree with everything you've said but I also think that of people start realizing that we weren't the better team in 14 of the 17 losses and 14 of 18 overall (including 95) then people will stop being so negative towards our beloved team

bartruff1
02-04-2015, 06:05 PM
You think ……but you don't know…..then there's still a possibility :)

It was a joke bart …

Sorry about that....sometimes I am so dense....ok....often times....carry on...

MickMick
02-04-2015, 07:33 PM
Anyone remember GU verse UCLA in the tournament? The game at Arizona this year closely approximated that.

GU melted, but a big part of it is how the game is called in the late game. A big, quick, athletic team with the added bonus of swallowed whistles will doom this team.

GU ball handlers will get continuously trapped by slap happy world class athletes with no one situationally aware enough to create an outlet to bail them out. Wiltjer and Karno trying to dribble with their back to the basket in an attempt to create a shot as a school of sharks quickly close in for the feeding frenzy, mercilessly stealing the ball away..

Perhaps my defense mechanism is cranked up to high, but I expect a repeat of that UCLA game. I think the team is going to melt due in large part to the game evolving into a slap fest at crunch time with the Zags unable to adapt.

Just calling it like I see it.

DixieZag
02-04-2015, 07:57 PM
Anyone remember GU verse UCLA in the tournament? The game at Arizona this year closely approximated that.

GU melted, but a big part of it is how the game is called in the late game. A big, quick, athletic team with the added bonus of swallowed whistles will doom this team.

GU ball handlers will get continuously trapped by slap happy world class athletes with no one situationally aware enough to create an outlet to bail them out. Wiltjer and Karno trying to dribble with their back to the basket in an attempt to create a shot as a school of sharks quickly close in for the feeding frenzy, mercilessly stealing the ball away..

Perhaps my defense mechanism is cranked up to high, but I expect a repeat of that UCLA game. I think the team is going to melt due in large part to the game evolving into a slap fest at crunch time with the Zags unable to adapt.

Just calling it like I see it.

Exactly. I had not noticed this nuance of it. I had only noticed the tendency to get very conservative and playing not to lose. You put a whole lot more meat on the problem that compounds it. Good observation. I dearly hope some adjustments can be made, in attitude at least.

229SintoZag
02-04-2015, 09:34 PM
To say that the tournament is a "crap shoot" is to suggest it is more about luck than it is about skill or acumen on the court.

What I find amusing is how lucky guys like Coach K, Roy Williams, Tom Izzo, Jim Boeheim, etc, seem to be. Those guys are just so darn lucky!

How did they get so lucky?

If only Mark Few had some luck we'd be OK.

Oh well, here's hoping for some lucky dice...

seacatfan
02-04-2015, 09:56 PM
Anyone remember GU verse UCLA in the tournament? The game at Arizona this year closely approximated that.


Other than having a lead in the second half and eventually losing the game, I don't see the similarity. GU was tearing UCLA apart, they were up by as much as 17 or 18 before the collapse. Against Arizona the Zags appeared to be in control, but was the lead ever more than about 8? Fairly big difference.

seacatfan
02-04-2015, 09:59 PM
To say that the tournament is a "crap shoot" is to suggest it is more about luck than it is about skill or acumen on the court.

What I find amusing is how lucky guys like Coach K, Roy Williams, Tom Izzo, Jim Boeheim, etc, seem to be. Those guys are just so darn lucky!

How did they get so lucky?

If only Mark Few had some luck we'd be OK.

Oh well, here's hoping for some lucky dice...

I'm more curious why George Mason, Butler, VCU and Wichita St. got "lucky" in the Tourney. Those coaches with repeated trips to the Final 4, obviously they are good coaches. Some of their "luck" might have to do with the players they've had, but some of it is doing a big time job of coaching in high pressure situations.

seacatfan
02-04-2015, 10:04 PM
Right I totally agree with everything you've said but I also think that of people start realizing that we weren't the better team in 14 of the 17 losses and 14 of 18 overall (including 95) then people will stop being so negative towards our beloved team

Right, GU is usually the underdog. I don't expect them to pull off an upset every year. But the "better" team doesn't always win games. I have a really, really hard time believing that the Syracuse team that ripped Gonzaga apart wasn't a "better" team than Butler that year, but they still lost to them. Was VCU a better team than Kansas when they went to the Final 4? Was George Mason a better team than a loaded UConn team when they went to the Final 4? If you look back thru the brackets, you can keep coming up with a bunch of examples. Villanova and NC State weren't even remotely close to the best teams in the country when they won National Championships in the 80's. Heck even just last year is another glaring example. You just have to play better than everybody else for 6 games at the end of the season.

GrizZAG
02-05-2015, 05:14 AM
Intriguing thread this one is. Having seen us in umpteen tournaments over nearly two decades it seems that one thing stands out, the winning team plays loose and we play tight. It's like in the end, the winning coach just lets the dogs out to run and do their thing, they get the pass to play to their talent to win the game. The tentativeness we display at times is obvious. When it's crunch time and nothing to lose, the Shocker's just let em loose and they fell. UCLA seemed to "Will" their win. It is the players and heart that wins games..no?

Birddog
02-05-2015, 05:19 AM
To say that the tournament is a "crap shoot" is to suggest it is more about luck than it is about skill or acumen on the court.

What I find amusing is how lucky guys like Coach K, Roy Williams, Tom Izzo, Jim Boeheim, etc, seem to be. Those guys are just so darn lucky!

How did they get so lucky?

If only Mark Few had some luck we'd be OK.

Oh well, here's hoping for some lucky dice...

Well it's pretty obvious then. Few needs to take a couple Final Four classes.

WallaWallaZag
02-05-2015, 05:45 AM
Intriguing thread this one is. Having seen us in umpteen tournaments over nearly two decades it seems that one thing stands out, the winning team plays loose and we play tight. It's like in the end, the winning coach just lets the dogs out to run and do their thing, they get the pass to play to their talent to win the game. The tentativeness we display at times is obvious. When it's crunch time and nothing to lose, the Shocker's just let em loose and they fell. UCLA seemed to "Will" their win. It is the players and heart that wins games..no?

well, if playing loose vs. tight is a deciding factor in march...and teams are a reflection of their coach...it's no wonder the zags haven't made a deep run recently :roll:

gonzagafan62
02-05-2015, 05:56 AM
Right, GU is usually the underdog. I don't expect them to pull off an upset every year. But the "better" team doesn't always win games. I have a really, really hard time believing that the Syracuse team that ripped Gonzaga apart wasn't a "better" team than Butler that year, but they still lost to them. Was VCU a better team than Kansas when they went to the Final 4? Was George Mason a better team than a loaded UConn team when they went to the Final 4? If you look back thru the brackets, you can keep coming up with a bunch of examples. Villanova and NC State weren't even remotely close to the best teams in the country when they won National Championships in the 80's. Heck even just last year is another glaring example. You just have to play better than everybody else for 6 games at the end of the season.

Everyone takes Gonzaga serious now. We have to be better than teams if we are going to advance.

cjm720
02-05-2015, 06:49 AM
To say that the tournament is a "crap shoot" is to suggest it is more about luck than it is about skill or acumen on the court.

What I find amusing is how lucky guys like Coach K, Roy Williams, Tom Izzo, Jim Boeheim, etc, seem to be. Those guys are just so darn lucky!

How did they get so lucky?

If only Mark Few had some luck we'd be OK.

Oh well, here's hoping for some lucky dice...

It would be inaccurate to suggest a crap shoot is more about luck than skill. Skill, determination, game plan, match up (etc.) as well as fortune dictates success for 99% of teams (just like it dictated our early tourney success and every season since). To suggest that luck plays into the formula does not equate to fortune being more important than other winning attributes, it simply acknowledges that something's happen beyond control whether positive or negative. Of course winning programs (like us) mitigate the luck factor by preparation but it doesn't remove it.

dan71w
02-05-2015, 07:34 AM
In the early years we could sneak up on opponents and take them by surprise.
now everyone knows we are a continual great team, with high basketball IQ. nobody over looks us anymore. our continued success has inspired hate in many parts of the country. and just like in our own little wcc conference, our foes "get-up" to play us because the hate runs so deep, the jealousy so over whelming that the find the strength to become super teams against us.
the only type of basketball i fear the zags have always had a problem with is the slap happy teams, fast hands, slapping and grabbing, those seem to be the only games we really loose anymore. and a large part of that is because the refs in the wcc call the games that more or less limit that type of "defense" where once we get into the tournament, refs let that type of play go.
as far as "crap-shoot" comment, I understand, it is a crap shoot, it is a single elimination tournament. one team gets hot, one player gets superman traits, one bad bounce, or one swallowed whistle, a bad match-up or an injury,,,,,so many factors that can go wrong, any of which can be the difference between loosing or winning and moving on to the next.

bartruff1
02-05-2015, 07:39 AM
You have to make six consecutive passes to win......one krap out and you are done.....Believe me, I learned that, the hard way....

BULLDOG#1
02-05-2015, 08:25 AM
Anyone remember GU verse UCLA in the tournament? The game at Arizona this year closely approximated that.

GU melted, but a big part of it is how the game is called in the late game. A big, quick, athletic team with the added bonus of swallowed whistles will doom this team.

GU ball handlers will get continuously trapped by slap happy world class athletes with no one situationally aware enough to create an outlet to bail them out. Wiltjer and Karno trying to dribble with their back to the basket in an attempt to create a shot as a school of sharks quickly close in for the feeding frenzy, mercilessly stealing the ball away..

Perhaps my defense mechanism is cranked up to high, but I expect a repeat of that UCLA game. I think the team is going to melt due in large part to the game evolving into a slap fest at crunch time with the Zags unable to adapt.

Just calling it like I see it.

I get what you're saying here, and I agree with it - but only to a point.

GU is always going to be exposed to this sort of slap-happy defense as they try and hold a lead against a more athletic team. Most, if not all, of the teams GU faces in the tourney are more athletic. This particular zag team is more athletic than most and can hang better with the more athletic teams... and they've got great guard leadership in Pangos. That said, they were not able to close things out in Arizona against a more athletic team.

But I look at that game as a learning experience for this team. I think the characterization here is that the zags gave it away. That's really not how I saw it. AZ earned that game. They made some pretty tough shots down the stretch and GU couldn't match them. I'm not sure if the refs swallow their whistle in the tournament when Sabonis takes two knees to his back on the offensive glass, either. Sure, they used their athleticism to force some TO's, but I'm not sure it was quite the meltdown that's portrayed.

GU is always going to rely on skill (and size) to overcome more athletic teams. This year, the athleticism separation between GU and most tourney teams is smaller because the zags aren't that un-athletic, they are extremely efficient offensively, they are big and can rebound, they have great depth (and decent perimeter athletes on the second unit, and they have great guard leadership.

Yep, they could flame out in the early rounds, but I don't think it will be this particular demise that get's them this year.

cjm720
02-05-2015, 08:38 AM
I get what you're saying here, and I agree with it - but only to a point.

GU is always going to be exposed to this sort of slap-happy defense as they try and hold a lead against a more athletic team. Most, if not all, of the teams GU faces in the tourney are more athletic. This particular zag team is more athletic than most and can hang better with the more athletic teams... and they've got great guard leadership in Pangos. That said, they were not able to close things out in Arizona against a more athletic team.

But I look at that game as a learning experience for this team. I think the characterization here is that the zags gave it away. That's really not how I saw it. AZ earned that game. They made some pretty tough shots down the stretch and GU couldn't match them. I'm not sure if the refs swallow their whistle in the tournament when Sabonis takes two knees to his back on the offensive glass, either. Sure, they used their athleticism to force some TO's, but I'm not sure it was quite the meltdown that's portrayed.

GU is always going to rely on skill (and size) to overcome more athletic teams. This year, the athleticism separation between GU and most tourney teams is smaller because the zags aren't that un-athletic, they are extremely efficient offensively, they are big and can rebound, they have great depth (and decent perimeter athletes on the second unit, and they have great guard leadership.

Yep, they could flame out in the early rounds, but I don't think it will be this particular demise that get's them this year.

Excellent post, I agree.

gonzagafan62
02-05-2015, 08:43 AM
I get what you're saying here, and I agree with it - but only to a point.

GU is always going to be exposed to this sort of slap-happy defense as they try and hold a lead against a more athletic team. Most, if not all, of the teams GU faces in the tourney are more athletic. This particular zag team is more athletic than most and can hang better with the more athletic teams... and they've got great guard leadership in Pangos. That said, they were not able to close things out in Arizona against a more athletic team.

But I look at that game as a learning experience for this team. I think the characterization here is that the zags gave it away. That's really not how I saw it. AZ earned that game. They made some pretty tough shots down the stretch and GU couldn't match them. I'm not sure if the refs swallow their whistle in the tournament when Sabonis takes two knees to his back on the offensive glass, either. Sure, they used their athleticism to force some TO's, but I'm not sure it was quite the meltdown that's portrayed.

GU is always going to rely on skill (and size) to overcome more athletic teams. This year, the athleticism separation between GU and most tourney teams is smaller because the zags aren't that un-athletic, they are extremely efficient offensively, they are big and can rebound, they have great depth (and decent perimeter athletes on the second unit, and they have great guard leadership.

Yep, they could flame out in the early rounds, but I don't think it will be this particular demise that get's them this year.

Exactly my thoughts. Thanks for this.

229SintoZag
02-06-2015, 08:55 AM
It would be inaccurate to suggest a crap shoot is more about luck than skill. Skill, determination, game plan, match up (etc.) as well as fortune dictates success for 99% of teams (just like it dictated our early tourney success and every season since). To suggest that luck plays into the formula does not equate to fortune being more important than other winning attributes, it simply acknowledges that something's happen beyond control whether positive or negative. Of course winning programs (like us) mitigate the luck factor by preparation but it doesn't remove it.

If we accept as true what you state here, shouldn't the "luck" factor operate bilaterally, so that GU is the beneficiary of good luck in the tournament just as often as GU is the victim of bad luck?

I posit that it should. Luck, fate, "that's just the way the ball bounces," however you want to put it--the reality is that, especially the past decade, the Zags have been luck's victim much more than luck's beneficiary. For every team with bad luck in the tournament that loses, there is a team with good luck that wins. See, e.g., Wichita State scoring the most points in 9 consecutive possesions of any Division 1 team in any game that entire season to beat us, for example.

So the question we should be asking is given the zero-sum nature of luck's role in the tournament (for every winner there is a loser), why has Gonzaga been more often unlucky than lucky?

Zagceo
02-06-2015, 09:06 AM
If we accept as true what you state here, shouldn't the "luck" factor operate bilaterally, so that GU is the beneficiary of good luck in the tournament just as often as GU is the victim of bad luck?

I posit that it should. Luck, fate, "that's just the way the ball bounces," however you want to put it--the reality is that, especially the past decade, the Zags have been luck's victim much more than luck's beneficiary. For every team with bad luck in the tournament that loses, there is a team with good luck that wins. See, e.g., Wichita State scoring the most points in 9 consecutive possesions of any Division 1 team in any game that entire season to beat us, for example.

So the question we should be asking is given the zero-sum nature of luck's role in the tournament (for every winner there is a loser), why has Gonzaga been more often unlucky than lucky?

My gut reaction is lack of depth………….Gary gets hurt……no Eric or Byron……Kevin gets hurt …….no Eric or Silas…….

SwainZag
02-06-2015, 09:23 AM
To say that the tournament is a "crap shoot" is to suggest it is more about luck than it is about skill or acumen on the court.

What I find amusing is how lucky guys like Coach K, Roy Williams, Tom Izzo, Jim Boeheim, etc, seem to be. Those guys are just so darn lucky!

How did they get so lucky?

If only Mark Few had some luck we'd be OK.

Oh well, here's hoping for some lucky dice...

Coaches like this constently go into the tournament with a 1-4 seed in the tournament. Duke's average seed in the last 16 years is something like 1.9. Gonzaga has received a seed better than Duke's average seed once in their history. K, Williams, Izzo, Boeheim have had a lot more solid teams due to better players picking the big schools...period. It's not a knock on Few....it's reality. Gonzaga has also never been bounced by a team worse than 10 in a tournament, yet Duke was bounced by a 14 and 15 seed in the past 5 years.......the tournament can definitely be a crapshoot without equaling that to excuses.

seacatfan
02-06-2015, 09:28 AM
Coaches like this constently go into the tournament with a 1-4 seed in the tournament. Duke's average seed in the last 16 years is something like 1.9. Gonzaga has received a seed better than Duke's average seed once in their history. K, Williams, Izzo, Boeheim have had a lot more solid teams due to better players picking the big schools...period. It's not a knock on Few....it's reality. Gonzaga has also never been bounced by a team worse than 10 in a tournament, yet Duke was bounced by a 14 and 15 seed in the past 5 years.......the tournament can definitely be a crapshoot without equaling that to excuses.

Wyoming was an 11 seed. But no doubt Duke has had 2 very bad first round losses in recent years.

Vanzagger
02-06-2015, 09:43 AM
Coaches like this constently go into the tournament with a 1-4 seed in the tournament. Duke's average seed in the last 16 years is something like 1.9. Gonzaga has received a seed better than Duke's average seed once in their history. K, Williams, Izzo, Boeheim have had a lot more solid teams due to better players picking the big schools...period. It's not a knock on Few....it's reality. Gonzaga has also never been bounced by a team worse than 10 in a tournament, yet Duke was bounced by a 14 and 15 seed in the past 5 years.......the tournament can definitely be a crapshoot without equaling that to excuses.

Name the player for us and I will name the big schools recruiting him. We got a couple guys(Pendo&Gray) real early but there was still BCS interest looking to pick our guys off at the last second. Hell we have even had BCS football teams stealing.

Get it through your heads. Guys want to play here. Now the One and Dones may be afraid they will be asked to redshirt if the come here.

I can't remember if Cory Violette was being pursued(BCS). Can someone confirm?

Vanzagger
02-06-2015, 09:49 AM
even dating back to Santangelo I heard Stanford was after him

SwainZag
02-06-2015, 09:59 AM
Name the player for us and I will name the big schools recruiting him. We got a couple guys(Pendo&Gray) real early but there was still BCS interest looking to pick our guys off at the last second. Hell we have even had BCS football teams stealing.

Get it through your heads. Guys want to play here. Now the One and Dones may be afraid they will be asked to redshirt if the come here.

I can't remember if Cory Violette was being pursued(BCS). Can someone confirm?

I am not saying that Gonzaga doesn't get players perused by big schools, because they certainly do. I am saying those coaches mentioned are trotting out multiple Top 100 recruits, multiple McDonalds All Americans and have produced multiple lottery picks. Yes, Gonzaga has done excellent recruiting, but have not been on the scale of your Duke, Kansas, UNC, Mich St...etc.

cjm720
02-06-2015, 10:27 AM
If we accept as true what you state here, shouldn't the "luck" factor operate bilaterally, so that GU is the beneficiary of good luck in the tournament just as often as GU is the victim of bad luck?

I posit that it should. Luck, fate, "that's just the way the ball bounces," however you want to put it--the reality is that, especially the past decade, the Zags have been luck's victim much more than luck's beneficiary. For every team with bad luck in the tournament that loses, there is a team with good luck that wins. See, e.g., Wichita State scoring the most points in 9 consecutive possesions of any Division 1 team in any game that entire season to beat us, for example.

So the question we should be asking is given the zero-sum nature of luck's role in the tournament (for every winner there is a loser), why has Gonzaga been more often unlucky than lucky?

It certainly is bilateral, goes both ways. Regarding your question, I have been under the impression that regardless of how far we have advanced and how much we fans want, we still, more times than not (barely), have exceeded expectations based on seeding (a couple ways to look at this and there have been multiple threads on this...the pontiff could probably rattle the numbers off in his sleep)...just doesn't feel like it and it's been a long time since back to back to back S16s.

Vanzagger
02-06-2015, 12:50 PM
I am not saying that Gonzaga doesn't get players perused by big schools, because they certainly do. I am saying those coaches mentioned are trotting out multiple Top 100 recruits, multiple McDonalds All Americans and have produced multiple lottery picks. Yes, Gonzaga has done excellent recruiting, but have not been on the scale of your Duke, Kansas, UNC, Mich St...etc.

Agreed and as Tommy said we get many of our AA Burger Boys internationally without the Stars because they have not been ranked

229SintoZag
02-06-2015, 01:09 PM
It certainly is bilateral, goes both ways. Regarding your question, I have been under the impression that regardless of how far we have advanced and how much we fans want, we still, more times than not (barely), have exceeded expectations based on seeding (a couple ways to look at this and there have been multiple threads on this...the pontiff could probably rattle the numbers off in his sleep)...just doesn't feel like it and it's been a long time since back to back to back S16s.

On a game by game basis, you may be right and there may be an argument that globally Gonzaga is not more unlucky than lucky.

The problem is that all of the other teams like us that have been to the tournament every year have at least one if not multiple Final Four and/or National Titles during that span.

What is odd is that Gonzaga seems remarkably consistent in being lucky in the first round and finding back luck in the second these past 6 years. I won't for a second discount our wins against the likes of St. Johns, West Virginia, Florida State, etc. Those are solid wins. We may have even been fortune's beneficiary with Meech's coast-to-coast game winner against Western Kentucky.

I have to believe that this is Gonzaga's time; this year. If ever Gonzaga is going to make the move, this is the year. And whether we win has a lot more to do with how we play, how we match up, how we prepare, how we coach and strategize, and how hard the staff and team works than it has to do with luck. I hope this team realizes that the harder they work the luckier they will get.

maynard g krebs
02-06-2015, 05:04 PM
I can't remember if Cory Violette was being pursued(BCS). Can someone confirm?

I remember hearing the competition for him was from the Mountain West, but can't remember which school(s).