Charles Leclaire-US PRESSWIRE - Presswire

2012-13 Hype Tracker: Who's Saying What Nationally

The previews are coming fast and furious and while preseason hype is largely meaningless, it sure is fun to read and gloat about...

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8 Total Updates since October 8, 2012
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Tuesday News: KenPom Ranks Zags 14th

After making the ridiculously talented Lakers roster, Rob Sacre will get his first taste of regular season NBA action tonight...


Yahoo: Zags Atop The West Coast Conference

Yahoo's Jeff Eisenberg provides a nice five-minute rundown of what to expect and what to watch for this season in the West Coast Conference. Here is how he has the conference shaking out:

The author shows a nice understanding of the conference dynamics particularly as it relates to some of the mid to lower tier teams. At this point, LMU and USD definitely appear capable of pulling an upset, especially San Diego as they have a couple guys that can be very streaky shooters.

As for his remarks on Gonzaga, nothing too Earth-shattering even though I can't help but tense up when I read something like the following:

Top NBA prospect: Matthew Dellavedova, Saint Mary's. Hard to believe this isn't Elias Harris, but the 6-foot-7 senior has plateaued since the days when he was considered a surefire first-rounder as an underclassmen. Dellavedova probably lacks the athleticism to go in the first round, but his toughness, craftiness and ability to finish at the rim ought to get him second-round consideration.

Elias shouldn't have any problem with motivation this season with all the pundits saying he has 'regressed' or 'plateaued' since his freshman season. I think the point above and Eisenberg's choice of best backcourt in the league is likely going to change as soon as we get to Christmas.

For the full article, click here


Gonzaga Ranked 22nd Coaches Poll

As we have seen with other preseason polls, the Zags will be starting the season in the back end of the Top 25.


CBS Sports Pegs Gonzaga At #19

Another day, another preview ranking the Gonzaga Bulldogs in the back end of the top 25. This time, from the folks at CBS Sports. Jeff Goodman, one of the CBS guys that picked Gonzaga to be in the Final Four, put together this previewand he does echo some of the worries that have been voiced by a majority of the fanbase:

Why this team might disappoint: While Robert Sacre seemed to regress on the court, he was still the team's vocal leader. Few & Co. will need someone to step up and fill that role -- and while Sacre wasn't a big-time rebounder, the Zags still will need someone to control the glass. Dower is more of a finesse guy up front, so it'll fall on Harris and Karnowski -- and the big man from Poland is truly an unknown commodity at this point. Is he for real? Gonzaga can go with a huge frontline of Harris, Dower and Karnowski, but the concern there is on the defensive end and how they will be able to guard quicker, more athletic teams. The Bulldogs also lack a big scoring wing who can drive to the basket and make plays. For the 'Zags, it's a disappointment if they don't win the WCC and get a round or two into the NCAA tournament. I'd be surprising if a WCC title and a victory or two in March didn't happen this season.

Replacing Rob's defensive presence will be tricky and it is always hard to replace someone that has been so prominent in the program. That being said, from a skill perspective, you can make an argument that Gonzaga has improved in the post. More minutes for Sam Dower, a fresh and bulked up Kelly Olynyk, and the arrival of Przemek Karnowski should be a very solid front court. Joining them will be Elias Harris who I still think will see a majority of his minutes at the power forward spot with Guy Landry Edi patrolling the wing.

As with the rest of the previews, it is a solid read from Goodman who is definitely very high on the Bulldogs.


NBC Sports: Zags Check In At #19

Pretty concise preview of the Zags from Rob Dauster of CollegeBasketballTalk on NBC Sports. While this description of Elias Harris is a bit head-scratching, I think I agree with the overall point of view put forth by Dauster:

After battling injuries as a sophomore, Harris had a somewhat disappointing, albeit promising, junior year. Harris reaffirm his potential as a lottery pick last year, but his value as a piece to Gonzaga's puzzle skyrocketed. By the end of the season, Harris was Few's best rebounder and one of his best post defenders.

Moving right along...Dauster's preview is probably one of the few that actually calls out Kyle Dranginis as one to watch and raves about Gary Bell's importance to this team.

Like many other national pundits, Dauster seems to really like the Zags but is in 'wait and see' mode which explains them being in the latter part of the top-25.



Sporting News: "Soft" Zags Check In At #21

A decently fun read from The Sporting News that has the Bulldogs at #21 in the country. I'd expect most national polls to have Gonzaga here to start the season but, to be completely honest, college basketball is so wide open this season that the preseason rankings will be extremely worthless (even more so than normal!)

Nitpicking national previews is tricky because a) We're biased and b) A majority of national pieces are a mere regurgitation of one another. With that said, Sporting News does do an admirable job and provides quite a bit of detail on the Zags' roster.

Of course, every national writer loves saying the Zags aren't 'tough' enough, whatever that means. I'd point to this squad having a very solid tournament last season (dominating West VA, playing OSU to the wire) and doing that with two freshmen guards starting but, hey, I am pretty much resigned to the fact that national folks will always love saying Mark Few teams aren't tough enough. Even the author of this piece seems to say "The Zags aren't tough but...well, shoot, I need to fill up the page so I'll go with it". (Note: I do agree that Sacre leaving is cause for some concern but I have huge faith in Mr. Karnowki.

Toughness. It seemingly is an annual critique of the Bulldogs, the missing element that has led to many early NCAA Tournament exits. Pangos and Bell, with a year of experience now, should quell some of those fears. The way Harris played down the stretch, it seems as if his days of coasting are behind him. But Dower still doesn't always play big. And it's hard to know what to expect from Karnowski.


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