Michigan State’s double overtime win over Kentucky on Tuesday night in the Champions Classic (which did not take place on a boat) should add a little more shine on Gonzaga’s win over the Spartans last Friday. Of course, Gonzaga will get the direct matchup with the Wildcats this Sunday in one of the most anticipated games of the entire college basketball slate this season. Before that happens, here’s what some folks have been writing about the Zags this week:
- Gonzaga’s guard depth was celebrated during the summer, but the backcourt has come under fire just two games into the season for a lack of elite guard play. A big part of that is the fact that the current guard rotation follows the excellent administrations of Andrew Nembhard, Jalen Suggs (who played off ball a lot to accommodate Nembhard), Josh Perkins and Nigel Williams-Goss. Nolan Hickman’s ability to elevate himself to a higher level to meet the standard that the aforementioned point guards established will be a primary storyline throughout this season.
- In his recap of the Armed Forces Classic, Seth Davis reveals it was Tom Izzo who sold Mark Few on playing the game. Izzo and his Spartans played UNC on the deck of an aircraft carrier in 2011, and Izzo described that experience as “the best thing I’ve ever done” besides making it to the Final Four. After an exciting nail-biter that was compelling if not the highest quality of basketball we’ll see this season, more memories made, I suppose. Another interesting nugget from that piece includes Mark Few’s assessment that his team of introverts is still finding its way
- Dana O’Neil makes the case for Gonzaga to jump ship and head to another conference.
- The CBS Sports staff ranks the Top 26 coaches in college basketball. Where do you think Mark Few ended up and is it the right spot for him?
- The Zags sit atop the CBS Sports Power Rankings this week. We’ll see how that looks after two marquee matchups over the next 4 days.
- Gonzaga is a work in progress, which is a departure from the essentially tournament-ready squads that opened the last two seasons, but Jay Bilas still sees a squad that is good and will be very good by the end of the season.
- If you’re wondering what games you should tune into over the next few weeks, take a look at this rundown from Myron Medcalf of the must watch matchups.