BYU Gonzaga Round 2 Preview

Mccarthey Athletic Inside 560

BYU Gonzaga Round 2 Preview


BYU is in the home stretch of their season. They go to Spokane this week to play Gonzaga on Thursday night. It should be a fantastic college basketball game. The game will be televised on ESPN 2. BYU handled Gonzaga rather easily a few weeks ago in Provo. It should be a much more competitive contest this go round.

Both teams are still technically fighting for the WCC regular season title as well as an NCAA tournament bid. Though St. Mary’s will likely win the conference this year, Gonzaga is widely regarded as the king of the WCC and has been for the past decade. It will be the wildest WCC road crowd BYU has seen this year.

An interesting tidbit is that Gonzaga built a brand new arena in 2004 after they rose to national prominence. Only problem is, the new barn still only seats 6000, and it’s been filled for every game this season. The enrollment at the school is only 7500 but the team is followed by everyone in the Spokane area. Kind of interesting that they did not build a bigger arena. It is however, a beautiful facility. I’ve seen it in person.

As for the WCC conference race finishing up, have a look at this article from Jeff Call of The Deseret News:

Cougars still in West Coast Conference title chase

As for the Cougars’ chances at the NCAA tournament – Joe Lunardi, ESPN bracketology expert, has all 3 WCC power teams making it in

St. Mary’s – 7 seed

Gonzaga – 7 seed

BYU – 12 seed

Of note, Lunardi also has 3 team from the PAC-12 making the big dance: California-9 seed, Washington-11 seed, Arizona-12 seed. This is interesting since the prevailing wisdom has been that the number of teams getting in from the WCC will depend on how many mediocre Pac-12 teams stumble in.

I’d say BYU is no where near out of the woods yet. They either have to win on Thursday night or likely win the WCC tournament in Vegas to make the NCAA tournament.

February 20, 2012 Bracketology predictions – Joe Lunardi

Matt Nielson has been writing about the college sports landscape in Utah and the Intermountain West since 2010. When he’s not pretending to be a professional blogger, he works full time as a residential real estate agent and house flipper. Matt graduated from Brigham Young University in 2000. He and his family reside in Salt Lake City, UT.


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