November 30, 2012

Pacific Tigers @ Gonzaga Bulldogs

Game Time: Saturday, December 1st at 5:00PM

Gonzaga will be courting a new rivalry this Saturday evening when the Pacific Tigers come into the McCarthey Athletic Center to face the perennial big dogs of their future conference. At first glance, this matchup isn’t as attractive as some of our other preseason games this year. However, with Pacific set to join the WCC for the 2013-2014 season, Saturday night’s game becomes a must see for any Gonzaga fan.  

Although Pacific may not be a household name, they have been one of the more consistent teams in the Big West for the past 15 years under Head Coach Bob Thomason. Thomason is in his 25th and final season at his alma mater, and has brought his team to the NCAA tournament four times. At one point, they were flirting with Cinderella to become the next mid-major power. The Tigers went to the NCAA tournament in three consecutive seasons from 2004-2006 with wins over Big East members Providence and Pittsburgh. The team from Stockton, CA has dropped off slightly since 2006 and hasn’t returned since, but Pacific is still a competitive team that is looking to put up a big season in Thomason’s last year before retirement. The Zags are facing a well-coached team this weekend, and in my opinion, a well-suited program to join the WCC even if they are losing their long time head coach. 

Cool Student Produced Video

RECAP: Lewis and Clark State @ Gonzaga

Gonzaga- 104
LC State- 57

   Redshirt Freshmen Kyle Dranginis

The night began with Harris and Bell on the bench and a surprise start for David Stockton.  It looks as though Mark Few decided to rest Harris and Bell, as they didn’t see any minutes tonight against an easily beatable team out of the NAIA. The story of the night, however, was most undoubtedly redshirt freshman Kyle Dranginis.  His 30 points, 7 assists, 6 rebounds, 2 steals, and only 1 turnover was an instant ESPN headline.  It’s not too common that a player comes off the bench and puts up 30 in a college basketball game.  He definitely had a coming out party tonight and took every opportunity to display his offensive versatility.  Not only was he knocking down his much heralded 3 point shot (we can now officially call him 'Draino'), he also displayed his ability to take over the game.  He was finding his teammates and grabbing rebounds, but what I found most impressive was his ability to drive into the lane and finish with finesse with both his right and left hands.  He’s played with poise in big minutes his first six games, but his showing against LC-State allowed Gonzaga Fans to get a taste of Kyle’s true potential and the player he can be for Gonzaga.

November 27, 2012

Team Preview: Lewis-Clark St.

The Zags will host the Lewis-Clark State College Warriors tomorrow night at 6pm PST on Root Sports. The Warriors are members of the Frontier Conference in the NAIA. This game will count towards our official record. Obviously this is a dry run for the coaching staff to continue to get a gage for what works and the players to continue to gell together.

P.J. Bolte
The Warriors are led by 6-6 Senior P.J. Bolte out of a Tacoma, WA. He is currently averaging 19.3 points and 6.3 boards per game. Bolte originally signed with Rice University out of High School and later transferred to Eastern Washington before ultimately ending up with LCSC. Bolte averaged 14.9 points and 7.1 Boards per game last year. He should match up well in the interior with Elias Harris, although we all know that Harris will have a significant advantage.

This game should be seen for what it is, nothing more than a tune up for the upcoming slate of games against upper echelon talent. Nothing more than a bridge game to help the guys continue to develop chemistry and improve upon some elements that have been missing thus far. Expect a blow out in the range of 30-50 Points. Even if the Zags are looking past this game, do not expect any sort of upset. As always, GO ZAGS!

November 26, 2012

Zagaholic Rankings

 Week 2 of Rankings

1. Indiana 78 (4)
2. Duke 75
3. Michigan 68 (1)
4. Ohio St. 61
5. Louisville 58
6. Syracuse 56
7. Florida 49
8. Gonzaga 41
9. Arizona 39
9. Kentucky 39
11. Creighton 29
12. Kansas 25
13. Michigan St. 18
14. Missouri 13
15. North Carolina 10
15. Oklahoma St. 10

Rankings Roundup
ESPN: 10
AP: 12
Coaches: 12 2 9

November 23, 2012

Gonzaga to Old Spice Classic Championship

After last night, there were doubts creeping into the back of the minds of many Zag fans. Im not going to lie and say that i didnt have some doubts about the game tonight versus Oklahoma. Those doubts were quickly put to rest. Kelly Olynyk came out and showed flashes of brilliance with his athleticism and ability to drive to the hole. Elias Harris had some flashbacks to his highlight reel filled freshman season. It was an overall great effort by the Bulldogs.

There were still some flaws, starting with cold shooting from the guard spot. Especially Kevin Pangos and David Stockton who were a combined 1-9 from three. The team shot 27% from outside and at times appeared to be heaving some shots that probably were rushed and unnecessary. The team defense was good, but not necessarily great, although Stockton ended up with 5 steals and 6 boards. Olynyk  had 8 Points and 8 Boards almost netting a double double. The real star of the game was Elias Harris, he really came alive in the 2nd half with 16 points, 18 overall. He was a veritable highlight real, flying through traffic playing above the rim. If he can consistently put that kind of effort together, the sky is the limit for this team, and for his prospects at playing in the NBA.

Team Leaders
Scoring: Elias Harris 18 Points
Rebounding: Kelly Olynyk 8 Boards
Passing: Pangos/Olynyk/Dranginis 2 Assists
Stealing: David Stockton 5 Steals
Blocking: Zilch

Great to see the offense clicking finally after that gut wrenching, slow paced, ugliness from a night ago. The Zags move on to play Davidson in the Championship on Sunday night at 7pm EST. Go Zags!

November 22, 2012

Old Spice Update

So far things have gone according to what we predicted yesterday, West Virginia, Davidson, and Oklahoma have moved on. Game Time!

We are live tweeting the game over at @Zagaholic


By the way, here is the schedule for the winners bracket tomorrow and Saturday assuming Gonzaga beats Clemson:

West Virginia v Davidson
12:30PM on ESPN2

Oklahoma V Gonzaga
7:30PM on ESPN2

Old Spice Classic Title Game
7PM on ESPN2

November 21, 2012

Old Spice Tourney Preview

The 2012 Old Spice Classic is beginning to look quite underwhelming on the national radar. This was not the case just a couple weeks ago, but with West Virginia, Davidson and Vanderbilt having disappointing starts to the season, Gonzaga is now the odds on favorite to win the tournament, and win it pretty easily at that. This is not to say that teams like Clemson or Oklahoma will not pose a challenge, i'm sure both teams will provide more fight than any team the Zags have faced thus far. The tournament schedule looks like this for tomorrow (Eastern Time):

Thursday NOON West Virginia vs. Marist ESPN2
2:00 PM Vanderbilt vs. Davidson ESPN2
7:00 PM Texas El Paso vs. Oklahoma ESPN2
9:00 PM Clemson vs. Gonzaga ESPN2

The Winner of Gonzaga/Clemson will take on the winner of Oklahoma/UTEP while the Winner of Vanderbilt/Davidson will take on the winner of West Virginia/Marist 

November 20, 2012

Team Preview: Portland Pilots

Eric Reveno took over a Portland team in 2006 that had consistently been a doormat in the WCC with only one conference title coming in 1996.  In his first two years, he produced two 9 win seasons, but looked to be developing a solid group of young players as he had two consecutive 3rd place WCC finishes in his third and fourth seasons.  In the 2009-2010 season, Portland saw their highest success in recent memory, especially in the preseason.   They came into the 76 Classic with an undefeated record and a win already over the University of Oregon.  They went on to defeat UCLA and Minnesota in the 76 Classic, only to lose a close game against a highly ranked West Virginia team in the championship.   Portland went on to see decent success the rest of the season, but even with a 3rd place finish in the WCC, their season ended with a first round loss to Northern Colorado in the opening round of the CIT.

November 19, 2012

Zagaholic's Top 16

This marks the beginning of the Zagaholic Top 16. We will be polling our writers every week to determine an opinion poll. This will be tabulated the same way that the AP poll is tabulated. Here is our first ranking:

Votes (1st Place)
93 (4)
91 (1)
Ohio St.
63 (1)
North Carolina
NC State
Michigan St.

Other Receiving Votes: Creighton 14, UNLV 8, Memphis 6, Notre Dame 3, Cincinnati 2, Baylor 1

Rankings Roundup

The Zags continue to move up in the rankings nationally as well, hovering around the 10-12 mark so far this morning. Links below:

ESPN Power Rankings #12 #12 #10
AP #17
USAToday #16

November 18, 2012

New Contributor

   In what has been in talks for some time, we now welcome aboard another contributor. Hailing from the Seattle, WA region, Ben Weiser will be taking over as our Seattle Coorespondent, Pacific Northwest Scout,  and Lead Contributor. He joins our growing stable of writers and is quite passionate about the Zags! 

Welcome Aboard Ben!

November 17, 2012

Game Preview South Dakota

Opponent: South Dakota
Location: Gonzaga (McCarthey Athletic Center)
Date: November 18 @ 1pm PST/4pmEST

Gonzaga had no trouble dispatching a West Virginia team last week and should not be bothered again by a young South Dakota Team. Like many of the other teams the Zags have faced and will face this year, the Coyotes are a brand new team. Four of the five starters from last years team are gone, but Coach Dave Boots remains a constant as he has been the head Coach for a quarter Century.

Coach Boots had 23 consecutive winning seasons before last year and his teams introduction to the Summit League and D1 basketball. "This roster has a little bit more than it did a year ago," said Boots. "Our team is deeper and more athletic and that's the direction we are trying to move in terms of recruiting. We have become a fully-eligible Division I program and it is expected that we add to our roster talent wise to be competitive."

Few believe the Coyotes will have the fire power or athleticism to challenge Gonzaga especially in the Kennel where Gonzaga is almost unbeatable. This will prove to be another warm up game before the Zags take on currently undefeated Clemson.
According to (a WVU blog site), who has an entire thread devoted to Gonzaga motivation, Bob Huggins has been playing last year’s game 24/7 in the Practice Facility.  Yes, they are hungry indeed.
While there shouldn't be much of a challenge, South Dakota does have some athletic players who should make for some interesting match ups for the Zags.

November 14, 2012

Ryan Edwards - Officially Signs LOI

According to Darnay Tripp with Krem 2, Ryan Edwards has officially signed his Letter of Intent to Gonzaga.

For more information on Edwards, read Krem2's article from July here

November 13, 2012

Game Recap: West Virginia

Final Score Gonzaga 84 West Virginia 50

What a game. The Zags went out with questions about toughness, questions about whether the athleticism or the defensive play of the Mountaineers would be too much. These questions were answered and answered well. The Zags played sweltering defense at times, creating turnover after turnover and frustrating West Virginia into playing outside their comfort zone. The refs called a tight game, routinely hitting both teams with ticky tacky fouls forcing the pace to crawl at times. However the calls were relatively balanced and there was no real advantage towards either side. This team feels as balanced and deep as any GU squad in my recent memory.

November 12, 2012

Game Day! West Virginia Conversation

Well its gameday again, and this time its a real test. We will be live tweeting the game @zagaholic tonight, cant wait! In the meantime feel free to use the comment section to discuss the game. GO ZAGS!

November 11, 2012

Game Preview: West Viriginia

Opponent: West Virgina
Location: Gonzaga (McCarthey Athletic Center)
Date: November 12 @ 9pm PST/12am EST (Opening Game of ESPN 24 Hour Kickoff)

Tomorrow is the night we have all been waiting for – the night the 2012-2013 Zags team will be tested for the first time this season.  The test comes against a West Virginia team that we dominated last year.  Last season we dashed WVU’s tournament dreams with a thorough beat down (77-54) to advance to the round of 32. 

But that was last year, a different season…this year we face a squad that is hungry; hungry to show the Gonzaga Bulldogs that they will not go down without a fight.  They have studied the tape, they have memorized the plays, and they have entrenched that feeling of loss into their hearts and brains.  No, they will not go down without a fight this season.  West Virginia has something to prove as they march their way into battle in the tough environment of the McCarthey Athletic Center, otherwise known as the Kennel. 

According to (a WVU blog site), who has an entire thread devoted to Gonzaga motivation, Bob Huggins has been playing last year’s game 24/7 in the Practice Facility.  Yes, they are hungry indeed.

So, what should we expect tomorrow night?  Let’s take a deeper look into the 2012-2013 West Virginia Team:

November 10, 2012

Coach Few After The SUU Game

Team Preview: San Diego

San Diego had their best season of basketball (in recent years) in 2007-2008.  Since then, this squad has struggled.  Last season, they were solidly in the lower to middle of the pack of the WCC.  They swept Portland, Pepperdine, and Santa Clara last season, and pulled out an additional win against Loyola Marymount.  They struggled heavily against Saint Mary’s, BYU, and Gonzaga.

Their bright spot on the team was freshman guard Johnny Dee, who set the USD Freshman scoring record with 426 points.  He was also named to the All-WCC Freshman Team and was named to the Mid-Major Freshman All-American team.