21. Gonzaga (11-4)
Gonzaga has been a national power for several years but they’re a few steps behind that this season. Nonconference play had opportunities, but they didn’t quite take advantage, losing to Purdue, Washington, and both teams from last year’s title game. WCC play will offer them a myriad of opportunities to get back on track.
Game one in conference play wasn’t much of a challenge as the Bulldogs continued their winning ways over Pepperdine, getting an 86-60 victory. Graham Ike led the way with 20 points and 7 rebounds while Anton Watson had 15 points and 6 rebounds of his own. It was more of the same on Saturday night with Gonzaga triumphing 101-74 over San Diego. Ben Gregg actually led the way with 22 points off the bench while Ike offered 19 points and 8 rebounds in another big win.
The Bulldogs were still ranked despite recent struggles and will certainly stockpile wins in the coming weeks against their inferior conference foes. Winning by at least 25 points in their first two conference contests is an indication of things to come, but it won’t all be easy street. Gonzaga looked better this week, but their next three games are on the road, starting with Santa Clara next Thursday.