In the world of Twitter and ESPN having five television channels, there is rarely an event in the sporting world that goes unnoticed. Case in point, Syracuse's loss two nights ago to the LeMoyne Dolphins (I swear if it was a different name it wouldn't be a big deal) was treated as ESPN's lead in story all day long, was discussed on every daytime show such as PTI and will stick in the sides of the Orange until they get a big win in the Big East. A good thing that came from this was that most players for big time programs were noticing the Syracuse loss and you can bet that it motivated them not to have the same thing happen to them. With that in mind, I was stunned when I heard the news that UCLA barely, and I mean barely escaped an upset bid from another school that can't even award athletic scholarships! We'll get more into that a little later. For now, here is some Gonzaga news to get you through this Thursday...
In a very, very well done piece by Howie Stalwick, we get an in depth look into easily the most dynamic personality on the Gonzaga roster. Steven Gray has often been criticized for his relaxed on-court attitude and the perception that he doesn't play at 100% and this article kind of speaks to that. In the article, Stalwick notes how Gray views basketball in his mind, whether or not we can expect an increased leadership role from him, and what else is he involved with besides basketball. It is pretty obvious that Mark Few will always be wanting more leadership from Steven if this article is any indicator. I honestly didn't know how to react after reading this piece in the Kitsap Sun and it will be very interesting to see how Coach Few deals with Steven if he strugles.
Surprise, surprise! Gonzaga will have some new faces this season. Not much in this AP story put out by the Seattle PI. Some nice quotes from the guys and Coach Few but other than that, it is a pretty standard season preview.
Interesting/weird little list done by the Associated Press and put out in the Seattle Times. Not sure why people would have the fact that Gonzaga must win four more WCC titles in a row to match UCLA's record of 13. I'd put that in the love. A fun little fluff piece to read.
Austin Daye played by far his most minutes of the season, 17, in the Detroit Pistons loss last night against the Toronto Raptors. Daye accumulated five points, three rebounds, and two blocks during his time on the court but also picked up a familiar five fouls. Good to see him getting more minutes on the court, however. Hopefully he settles in as a regular contributor.
It's always interesting to watch how these big time programs come out of the gates in their exhibition matchups and if this early season is any indication, it is going to be an interesting year in college basketball. Syracuse goes down two nights ago and last night UCLA needed a three-point basket with 16 seconds left to beat NAIA opponent Concordia.
Eric Reveno's Portland Pilot's checked in at #70 in our SB Nation partner Mid-Major Madness' Ultimate Rankings. Here is what they had to say about Portland:
70. Portland: This season, the Pilots will be Gonzaga's main challenger in the conference. Coach Eric Reveno is building quickly and has the Pilots poised to battle it out with Gonzaga in his fourth season. Last year's JUCO sensation, 5-9 sniper T.J. Campbell (53 percent shooting on 3-pointers), joins Nik Raivio (16.0 ppg) in the league's best backcourt. There's quality size, too, in 6-10 senior Robin Smeulders and 6-8 Luke Sikma, the son of former NBA star Jack Sikma.
Have a great Thursday, Gonzaga fans. We'll keep you posted if anything else comes to light the rest of the day. As always you can follow our updates on Twitter: @slipperstillfit