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No. 1 seed Gonzaga escapes with tourney win

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  • dumprake Washington, UT
    March 21, 2013 10:03 p.m.

    And what of all that praise this paper was heaping on the MWC with 5 entries? SDSU, gone! UNLV, gone! New Mexico, gone! Boise will be gone! Only Colorado STate comes out a winner.

  • motorbike Cottonwood Heights, UT
    March 21, 2013 10:31 p.m.

    Pretty funny that so many Cougar fans were talking smack that the mighty WCC and MWC were so great in comparison with the Pac-12 ... between having a number 1 seed in the tourney (Gonzaga) and the MWC having 5 teams with much overall better tourney seeds than the Pac-12. Several of these same people made silly predictions that the Pac-12 would go 0-5 or 1-4 in their first round games.
    Yet here we are after day one and Gonzaga was nearly the first ever #1 seed to lose their first game, Saint Mary's is gone, and the better seeded MWC is 1-3 so far. Meanwhile the terrible Pac-12 has gone 3-0 despite getting the raw end of the seedings.
    I'd say it's time to end the comparisons between these three conferences ... there is no comparison, the Pac-12 is clearly better than the MWC and far better than the WCC. End of story.

  • ImaUteFan West Jordan, UT
    March 21, 2013 11:10 p.m.

    dumprake, might want to check your bracket . . . SDSU plays tomorrow. Boise lost their play-in game.

    That being said, Pac12 teams are 3 - 0. How about that?

  • Duckhunted provo, UT
    March 22, 2013 6:47 a.m.

    motorbike,
    You're facts confuse Utah County's fiction... I am getting really tired of you Utah fans bringing up facts...HAHA at least we have John Stockton's son playing for our CYO national title... ask about CYO!?

  • Meadow Lark Mark IDAHO FALLS, ID
    March 22, 2013 7:35 a.m.

    The story was about Gongzaga and Southern. Can't we just leave out BYU and Utah and whatever other conferences for just a minute? I do agree that talk is so cheap and worthless. The reality is just whoever wins the games.

  • Brave Sir Robin San Diego, CA
    March 22, 2013 7:52 a.m.

    PAC12: 3-for-3
    WCC: awful-for-2

    Y fans would be best to keep their mouths shut - it's not wise to insult your superiors.

  • Eliot Santaquin, UT
    March 22, 2013 8:14 a.m.

    BYU fans are not doing the talking here. All I see are five comments from Ute fans who are left to talk about their conference because their team is done for the year.

  • Chris B Salt Lake City, UT
    March 22, 2013 8:18 a.m.

    I love my Pac 12 memberhsip and all Pac 12 teams!

    Don't be surprised to see a Pac 12 team in the final 4, with how Oregon and Arizona looked yesterday.

    Pac 12 for life!

  • Christy B Salt Lake City, Utah
    March 22, 2013 9:16 a.m.

    I see that my little sister is crowing about her "PAC 10.2 membership" again.

    It's sad when we have to live in the reflected light of our accomplished associates, because we're incapable of producing any light of our own.

    Fun games yesterday. Maybe someday, we'll be good enough to actually be participants, rather than hosts and spectators.

    Go ZAGs!

  • But seriously folks! Salt Lake City, UT
    March 22, 2013 9:21 a.m.

    Simply put; Gonzaga did not look like a #1 team. There will be no PAc10 teams in the final four nor the elite eight. As we have seen in tourney play, bad teams (PAC 10) can play well for a game or two and then drop out. The PAC may have won a few lucky games last night but the run will be over next week. Mark it down.

  • motorbike Cottonwood Heights, UT
    March 22, 2013 9:29 a.m.

    Eliot

    "BYU fans are not doing the talking here. All I see are five comments from Ute fans..."
    ____________

    And there's a reason for that Eliot. BYU fans already did their talking, which is exactly why they're noticeably quiet today. Not a surprise though, this is how it usually goes.

  • Just the FAX Olympus Cove, Utah
    March 22, 2013 10:10 a.m.

    Looking back a year:

    Syracuse escaped UNC-Asheville 72-65 on Thursday, avoiding being the first #1 seed to lose to a #16 seed in the NCAA men's basketball tournament.

    But it wasn't pretty -- and it wasn't without controversy at the end.

    The Orange benefited from two questionable calls late in the game.

    After pulling out a controversial win against the #16 seed, the Orange then dispatched #8 seed Kansas State and #4 seed Wisconsin, before losing to #2 seed Ohio State in the Elite Eight 70-77.

    It's funny how quickly the haters want to write Gonzaga off for only winning 68-62 in a game in which the Zags never trailed after the 8:28 mark of the first half.

  • motorbike Cottonwood Heights, UT
    March 22, 2013 10:24 a.m.

    Just the FAX

    "It's funny how quickly the haters want to write Gonzaga off..."
    __________

    Don't point the finger at "the haters", it's pretty much the entire country at this point. Just turn on ESPN.

  • ND95CA Lincoln Park, IL
    March 22, 2013 10:33 a.m.

    @Just the FAX

    Thanks for adding a little perspective to the shrill voices of the haters.

    Gonzaga isn't the first, and certainly won't be the last, high seed to struggle against a much lower seed. In the end, however, it doesn't matter whether you win by 50 or by 1, the most important thing is to win and advance.

    Gonzaga's next opponent, Wichita, lost to Creighton TWICE in March; Creighton lost to Saint Mary's in late March; and Gonzaga easily handled Saint Mary's THREE times.

    In other words, fans who are eagerly trying to write Gonzaga off, may be bitterly disappointed.

  • ND95CA Lincoln Park, IL
    March 22, 2013 10:46 a.m.

    motorbike

    "Don't point the finger at "the haters", it's pretty much the entire country at this point. Just turn on ESPN."

    Whether you call them "haters" or "naysayers," they're always eager to write off any "mid-major" that struggles. The power conference-centric media may occasionally embrace a feel-good story of an underdog Butler "over-achieving", but bitterly refuses to fully accept as legitimate any team outside of the traditional "power" conferences.

  • TheSportsAuthority Arlington, VA
    March 22, 2013 10:52 a.m.

    Ironically, struggling to beat Southern have been the best thing that could have happened to Gonzaga this tournament. The Zags are used to being considered nothing but a decent team from a small conference. Being one of the big boy favorites is not part of their MO. They're much more comfortable being the underdogs. With the rest of the country now questioning their right to even be a #1 seed, the Zags are back in their comfort zone of proving the naysayers wrong.

    It's funny how quickly the kids on the hill have jumped on the hating bandwagon to help themselves feel better about another failed season.

    Go Zags!

  • Eliot Santaquin, UT
    March 22, 2013 11:11 a.m.

    Perhaps you're right motormouth, but the real mystery here is why Ute fans are doing any talking at all given the current idle status of their team. May I suggest you gently turn the key in a counterclockwise direction and gracefully remove it from the ignition.

  • backpacn Sandy, UT
    March 22, 2013 12:05 p.m.

    Perspective:

    As we saw last year with Syracuse, Gonzaga is hardly unique as a #1 seed struggling against a #16 seed.

    There have been two one-point wins by #1 seeds over #16 seeds -- Georgetown over Princeton and Oklahoma over East Tennessee State, both in 1989. And, there was one two-point game -- Purdue over Western Carolina in 1996 -- and one that went overtime -- Michigan State 75-71 over Murray State in 1990.

    Other #1's have trailed #16's at halftime, the last Kansas, which was behind by two points before going on to beat Holy Cross 70-59 in 2002.

    It happens, even to the blue bloods of college basketball. So why is it such a big deal for Gonzaga?

    New Mexico actually losing to a team that had NEVER won an NCAA tournament game is a much bigger deal.

  • motorbike Cottonwood Heights, UT
    March 22, 2013 12:32 p.m.

    Eliot

    "Perhaps you're right motormouth, but the real mystery here is why Ute fans are doing any talking at all given the current idle status of their team."
    ____________

    Hilarious. Tell me where anything that's been said by me or other Ute fans on this topic has anything to do with Utah or BYU? Do you need me to admit Utah was terrible this year and the last several? Okay, I admit it. Good now? By the way, how many NCAA tourney teams did the Y beat this year? I know Utah beat at least four - two of which already have tourney wins. I think it's pretty clear that BYU isn't much, if any, better than Utah right now.
    Bottom line is this, Ute fans on this thread are only responding to the ridiculous comments that were made by BYU fans when talking conference smack before the tourney began. For whatever reason, people like yourself can't handle the fact that people like myself are calling those people out.
    So quit assuming we're haters. I don't hate Gonzaga or the WCC for that matter - this has absolutely nothing to do with that.

  • mussingaround Palo Alto, CA
    March 22, 2013 12:48 p.m.

    "Tell me where anything that's been said by me or other Ute fans on this topic has anything to do with Utah or BYU?"

    Dumb question, but here's the very obvious answer.

    Utah is in the PAC 10.2.

    Obviously, since the Utes stunk up the regular season so badly that they didn't even qualify for the lowest of the post season tournaments, U are forced to live vicariously through the accomplishments of your conference associates.

    Anything to help U feel better about that train wreck on the hill.

  • scott Alpine, UT
    March 22, 2013 12:58 p.m.

    motorbike

    "I think it's pretty clear that BYU isn't much, if any, better than Utah right now."

    Only in your dreams!

    149-145 overall; 7 in a row; 11 of the last 12; three straight 20-point wins in the HC by the Cougars; RPI #63 BYU versus #161 Utah, says otherwise.

  • mussingaround Palo Alto, CA
    March 22, 2013 1:11 p.m.

    "I know Utah beat at least four - two of which already have tourney wins."

    Unfortunately for you, U also LOST to FIVE teams, which, like Utah, didn't have a prayer of getting into any post season tournament without winning their conference tourney:

    #180 Ore St
    #191 Wash St
    #218 SMU
    #232 CS Northridge
    #282 Sac St

    We understand why U like to pretend that the other side of the ledger doesn't exist for Utah, but when U balance the good wins with the ugly losses, the net balance leaves U ranked #161 in RPI, not good enough to be included in the 148 teams invited to continue playing in the post season.

  • motorbike Cottonwood Heights, UT
    March 22, 2013 1:34 p.m.

    ND95CA

    "The power conference-centric media may occasionally embrace a feel-good story of an underdog Butler "over-achieving", but bitterly refuses to fully accept as legitimate any team outside of the traditional "power" conferences."
    ___________

    And why is this? Let me help ... 1960-2012 NCAA champions:

    Ohio State
    Cincinnati
    Cincinnati
    Loyola (Chicago)
    UCLA
    UCLA
    Texas Western
    UCLA
    UCLA
    UCLA
    UCLA
    UCLA
    UCLA
    UCLA
    North Carolina State
    UCLA
    Indiana
    Marquette
    Kentucky
    Michigan State
    Louisville
    Indiana
    North Carolina
    North Carolina State
    Georgetown
    Villanova
    Louisville
    Indiana
    Kansas
    Michigan
    UNLV
    Duke
    Duke
    North Carolina
    Arkansas
    UCLA
    Kentucky
    Arizona
    Kentucky
    Connecticut
    Michigan State
    Duke
    Maryland
    Syracuse
    Connecticut
    North Carolina
    Florida
    Florida
    Kansas
    North Carolina
    Duke
    Connecticut
    Kentucky

    There are two teams that weren't considered being from a "power conference" at the time they won the championship.

    No one is saying Gonzaga isn't good and that they don't belong in the tourney. People are just saying that their number one seed comes with a lot of question marks. It's simple at this point, if they win it all or even make the championship game, the "naysayers" will be proven wrong. We'll see soon enough.

  • motorbike Cottonwood Heights, UT
    March 22, 2013 1:56 p.m.

    scott,

    I appreciate your opinion, and you're entitled to it. Yet when I speak with my BYU friends that are a bit more level headed than those frequenting this website, they all mention how BYU managed to stay the same if not get worse through the season while noticing how much better the U was at the end of the year. They specifically mention their relief that BYU played Utah early in the season and acknowledge that Utah was the better of the two at seasons end. It's for this exact reason I worded my comment the way I did ... "...BYU isn't much, if any, better than Utah right now." - emphasis on NOW.
    So give me all the RPI ratings, etc that you want ... but level headed people saw Utah beating Colorado, Oregon and Cal at the end of the season and they witnessed BYU losing to San Diego TWICE. And tell me, what team worth anything did the Y beat this year? Their best win was probably Utah when Utah was still putting their team together.
    Congrats on the NIT by the way.

  • motorbike Cottonwood Heights, UT
    March 22, 2013 2:19 p.m.

    mussingaround

    "Dumb question, but here's the very obvious answer. Utah is in the PAC 10.2."
    __________

    You've obviously got a serious problem with context. Your cute little comment doesn't make sense when in fact the rest of us (prior to you and a couple others diverting the conversation) were talking specifically about the conferences and their performances in the NCAA tourney. Last I checked neither BYU or Utah were invited.

    I have to laugh at how worked up you folks have gotten over this topic. There's nothing better than seeing you guys try to compensate by bringing out the "PAC 10.2" comments. No jealousy there huh? I love it!

  • motorbike Cottonwood Heights, UT
    March 22, 2013 2:28 p.m.

    mussingaround

    You wrote: "Unfortunately for you, U also LOST to FIVE teams, which, like Utah, didn't have a prayer of getting into any post season tournament..."
    ______

    You may as well add BYU to your list of teams Utah would beat if they played them again.
    ____________________
    ____________________

    You wrote: "We understand why U like to pretend that the other side of the ledger doesn't exist for Utah."
    ______

    Apparently you missed the other part of my comment where I specifically said;
    "Do you need me to admit Utah was terrible this year and the last several? Okay, I admit it."
    Or was it this part you missed;
    "BYU isn't much, if any, better than Utah right now."
    You do know what NOW means, right?

  • Uteanymous Salt Lake City, Utah
    March 22, 2013 5:21 p.m.

    Looks like motormouth really has a bee under his bonnet.

    Sorry to burst your delusional crimson bubble, but despite the opinions of a couple of your "BYU" friends, you have absolutely no proof that Utah would beat BYU if the two teams played again. The BYU team that beat Washington in the 2nd half, would have easily handled Utah. That's as NOW as you can get!

    Notwithstanding your frantic and emotional diatribe, seasons are judged in their entirety, not by one little four-game hot streak at the end of an otherwise dismal season.

    #63 BYU(22-11) still playing in the NIT, with a 7th straight win over the Utes, is still MUCH BETTER than #161 Utah(15-18) watching the post season from home for the 4th straight season.

  • MUSSing with U Baltimore, MD
    March 22, 2013 6:05 p.m.

    motordude

    "And tell me, what team worth anything did the Y beat this year?"

    Didn't BYU just beat Washington this week?

    You know, the team Utah fans were gushing about beating to notch their first PAC 10.2 win in 6 tries.

    Of course, the Huskies were the most awesome team on the planet when Utah beat them in mid-January, but losing to PAC 10.2 tourney champion Oregon by 3 in OT and losing to BYU by 11 this week, proved that the Huskies were a fraud...

    except when Utah beat them; the Huskies were still awesome back then.

  • motorbike Cottonwood Heights, UT
    March 22, 2013 10:40 p.m.

    MUSSing with U ...

    Actually I'd readily admit that BYU beating Washington was a nice win, and definitely their best win of the year. But since you compared that to Utah beating them, lets remember that Washington holds one of the best home court advantages in the Pac 12 and that Utah beat them on that court. BYU got to play them in the confines of the Marriott center after having a TON of rest which Washington didn't have.

    Bottom line though, you guys bringing this conversation around to Washington only helps prove my original point ... you've just admitted that what you consider to be BYU's best win, was over a Pac 12 team. So thank you, thank you for settling this whole 'which conference is best' discussion.

  • SportsFan Orem, UT
    March 22, 2013 11:30 p.m.

    motorbike

    You're full of whiny excuses. A TON of rest also equals a TON of rust. What was Utah's excuse for losing to Sac St and CS Northridge AT HOME? If San Diego and San Francisco were good enough to beat BYU in the MC, why did the mighty PAC 12 Utes and Huskies fall short?

    There's a reason Utah finished almost 100 places lower in RPI than BYU; if you objectively evaluate the records of both teams, I'm sure you'll be able figure out what that reason is.

    Here's a clue: Seasons aren't evaluated simply by who you beat, but also by who you don't lose to.

  • Snack PAC Olympus Cove, Utah
    March 22, 2013 11:49 p.m.

    Summary after the round of 64

    WCC - 2-1(66%)
    PAC - 3-2(60%)
    MWC - 2-3(40%)

    #1 seeds Gonzaga and Kansas both got scares, but survived
    #2 seed Georgetown lost to Florida Gulf Coast, a team playing in its first NCAA tournament
    #3 seed New Mexico lost to Harvard, a team that won its first NCAA tournament game
    #4 seed Kansas St lost
    #5 seeds Oklahoma St, Wisconsin and UNLV lost
    #6 seed UCLA lost

    7 of the Top 24 teams didn't make it to the round of 32

    Gonzaga, Arizona, and SDSU appear to have the most realistic chances of making it to the Sweet Sixteen

  • phoenix Gilbert, AZ
    March 23, 2013 12:10 a.m.

    Snack PAC

    "Gonzaga, Arizona, and SDSU appear to have the most realistic chances of making it to the Sweet Sixteen"

    48 hours ago, who would have guessed that #7 SDSU playing #15 FGCU might have the toughest matchup of the three. Harvard could be tough for Arizona if the Crimson are hitting their outside shots. Gonzaga should be able to handle Wichita, a team that lost twice to Evansville and Creighton.

  • Mount Olympus Salt Lake, UT
    March 23, 2013 11:44 a.m.

    Re: Snack PAC

    You are counting St. Mary's win against Middle Tennessee State in the first four.

    Who even picks the first four in their bracket?
    Who brags about winning a first four game as winning a tournament game?

    The MEAP is 1-1 in the tournament.
    North Carolina A&T beat a 15-21 Liberty team in the first four.

    The MEAP conference is so good.

  • Mount Olympus Salt Lake, UT
    March 23, 2013 9:20 p.m.

    Gonzaga loses to Wichita State.

    Oregon and Arizona go to the Sweet 16.

    When was the last time the best team in the WCC advanced farther than the best team in Pac-12? Has this ever happened?

    Pac-12: 11 of the 12 current schools have played in a final 4
    WCC: 0 teams currently in this conference have ever made the final 4

    Which conference is better? It isn't even close.

  • motorbike Cottonwood Heights, UT
    March 24, 2013 11:13 p.m.

    Now what were all of you coug fans saying?

    The sound of crickets is darn near deafening.