March Preview: Gonzaga Bulldogs

The Bulldogs have taken the college basketball world by storm this season.  Coach Mark Few and company are 32-1 this season with their only loss coming to BYU on February 25th.  Not many critics are buying that Gonzaga has a chance to make a run in the NCAA Tournament because past Bulldogs teams have underperformed in the tourney despite their impressive record.  This group is arguably Mark Few’s most complete/balanced during his time in Spokane and they have all the potential to make it to Phoenix.

Strengths:

Like I stated earlier, this is Mark Few’s most complete team during his tenure at Gonzaga.  Yes, he had the team in 2013 with Kelly Olynk, Kevin Pangos and all them but I believe this team has a higher ceiling.  It all starts at the point guard position with Nigel Williams-Goss.  A transfer from Washington, Goss averages 16 points and five assists per game this year but most of his impact doesn’t even show up on the stat sheet.  Off-ball players such as Jordan Matthews, Josh Perkins, and Johnathan Williams, provide a great scoring help to complement Goss and help open up the floor on the offensive end.

In addition, it doesn’t hurt to have a couple big bodies inside.  Seven-footers Przemek Karnowski and Zach Collins have been superb this year for Gonzaga.  Both big men have great finishing ability and make it tough for opponents to finish inside because of their bodily presence.

Weaknesses:

In the Bulldogs lone loss to BYU, they struggled mightily in crunch time.  Gonzaga shot 16-29 from the free throw line and 3-16 from three-point land and couldn’t seem to get anything working on the offensive side of the ball.  In West Coast Conference play, Gonzaga’s smallest margin of victory was 10 up until the loss to BYU.  Although the ‘Zags beat teams such as Iowa State, Arizona, and Florida in non-conference play, they did not have any problems up until the loss to BYU and Gonzaga’s lack of quality opponents was evident in how they handled the late-game situations.

Photo via USA Today

Sean Bock
I'm a senior at Benet Academy in Lisle, Illinois and live in a small town called Western Springs. I'm known for playing little defense and looking to shoot the three ball every time down the floor. Follow me on Twitter @Sean_Bock_4

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