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WCC Power Rankings 7.0: Down the Stretch

Well, there probably won't be much change in these rankings for the rest of the season.  Gonzaga secured another regular season conference title and the rest of the conference has fallen back into place after the unusual week we experienced last week.  A lot of credit has to go to the job that Randy Bennett did with St. Mary's this season.  The Gaels appeared to be spiraling out of control after the loss of Patty Mills.  They were smoked by Portland right after the injury but have come back to win their last three games and establish themselves as a top mid-major team.  Here is how EveryDayeZag sorted out the rankings at this point in the season.

Rank Slipper Still Fits' Rank
Movement
1 Gonzaga Bulldogs (21-5) -
2 St. Mary's Gaels (22-5) -
3 Portland Pilots (18-9) -
4 Santa Clara Broncos (14-15) -
5 San Diego Toreros (14-15)
+3
6 Pepperdine Waves (8-20)
-1
7 San Francisco Dons (10-17)
-1
8 Loyola Marymount Lions (2-26)
-1

continue reading after the jump for EDZ's rankings explained...

Everydayezags rankings explained...

1)      Gonzaga (21-5; 12-0): The Zags have wrapped up yet another WCC crown and can now focus on completing WCC play undefeated. At this point, Gonzaga must focus on completing dominating every opponent to prove to the NCAA Tournament committee that they are worthy of a 4 or 5 seed.

2)      St. Mary's (22-5; 8-4): It seems that the Gaels have finally found their way without Patty Mills. Although they are only 4-4 without their superstar, they have now won 3 straight over quality competition (Portland, USD, Utah St.). The victory in the BracketBuster game over Utah St. could go a long way in earning the Gaels an at-large berth.

3)      Portland (18-9; 9-3): You better believe that the Pilots wish they had the chance to play in the BracketBuster series this year. However, they were not selected at the start of the season, which meant that they spend the week dominating the Southern California schools. Portland will head on the road to face Santa Clara and USD knowing that by winning out, they will receive a bye to the semi-finals of the WCC tournament.

4)      Santa Clara (14-15; 6-6): Just when it seemed like this team had discovered some form of consistency, the Broncos decided to throw away any chance at a top 2 finish. Over the past two weeks, Santa Clara has lost to both Pepperdine and USF. John Bryant continues to put up terrific stats, but it appears that his great season will be lost by this teams inconsistency.

5)      USD (14-14; 5-7): To be completely honest, there is no team deserving to be in the 5th spot in this power ranking. Outside of Gonzaga, Portland, and St.Mary's, this conference is littered in mediocrity. However, since I am forced to rank these teams, I will put USD here because of their win over Pacific in BracketBusters.

6)      Pepperdine (8-20; 5-7): It's tough ranking this team sixth after they lost both games last week by over 25 points. I still like the young nucleus that this team has, but I was expecting a much more impressive performance against Portland and Gonzaga. It appears that this team has a long way to go before being competitive again.

7)      USF (10-17; 2-10): I'm truly happy for Dior Lowhorn because it has been far too long since he was able to experience a victory. However, terrific performances by Lowhorn and Kwame Vaughn were enough for the Dons to pull the surprise of the week with a 67-66 victory over Santa Clara.  It looks like USF may be able to end the season with a small wining streak, as they head to Southern California for the final weekend of WCC play.

8)      LMU (2-26; 1-11): Back to the cellar for one of the worst teams that this conference has ever seen.