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2017 NCAA Tournament: 16 reasons why Gonzaga will beat West Virginia


NCAA Basketball: NCAA Tournament-Second Round-Gonzaga vs Northwestern Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports

The Gonzaga Bulldogs are facing off against the West Virginia Mountaineers in the Sweet 16 of the 2017 NCAA Tournament. It is Gonzaga’s third-straight appearance, but they ran into as stiff of an opponent as possible. A lot of pundits are picking Press Virginia for a possible upset.

But this is a Gonzaga blog, and we don’t work that way. So here are 16 reasons from the Gonzaga fanbase showing why the Zags are going to win.

  1. Seriously, can you get more dapper?

2) San Jose is a long way from Morgantown.

3) Gonzaga’s, not West Virginia’s, defense is ranked as the most efficient in the nation by the way, in case you forgot.

4) Can’t argue with this logic.

5) Gonzaga is tall, like...really tall. In fact, overall, the Zags are the ninth-tallest team in the nation.

6) The Zags have shown they are perfectly comfortable playing in high-octane games (hello Iowa State) and slow as molasses contests (hello Saint Mary’s over and over and over again).

7) This goes with the height thing, but a reminder of West Virginia fans: there isn’t a better passing big man in the game than Przemek Karnowski.

8) Sometimes, March Madness is just as much about skill as it is about luck.

9) He hasn’t played to his fullest potential for an entire game this tournament, but Nigel Williams-Goss is one of the best players in the country. There is a reason he is still on the Bob Cousy list, the Naismith Award list, and the Wooden Award list.

10) The pregame celebration is the most spot on in all of basketball.

11) West Virginia had a good win over Notre Dame, but they also shot the lights out of the ball from long range. West Virginia shot 57 percent from the three point arc, well above their season average of 36.7 percent.

12) A Shetland pony is a breed of pony originating from the Shetland Isles. They range from 28-42 inches tall and are considered quite intelligent. As for luck? I have no idea.

13) This is one of the big difference makers for the Zags this year. Usually, Gonzaga has some athleticism, some depth, and lots of solid teamwork. This year, the Zags actually have the athleticism and length to compete with a lot of these big name programs. There is a reason we only lost one game after all.

14) Mark Few is one of the best at game prep. The Zags reportedly have been practicing 7-on-5 to prepare for the West Virginia press. Say what you will about Few’s tendency to slow the game down WAY too early, but Gonzaga hasn’t looked befuddled this season.

15) One important distinction between Gonzaga and West Virginia during their runs this tournament. Gonzaga hasn’t played its best basketball yet and is still here. West Virginia has. Even if Gonzaga’s offense gets flustered, the defense is still going to make it hell for the Mountaineers.

16) Most of all, this: