Found March 04, 2013 on isportsweb.com:
PLAYERS: Kelly Olynyk
TEAMS:
The new polls came out today and as expected Gonzaga is the new #1 team in the country. I’m having a hard time excepting that fact. Sure they own an impressive 29-2 record, but it was largely built by romping through a weak West Coast Conference. Gonzaga has racked up 17 wins against teams ranked 101st or lower in the RPI. Their two losses were against Butler and at home to Illinois. They have ascended to the top of the polls not because of any impressive wins, but because teams that play in real conferences have been losing games. Here’s a side-by-side comparison of the last 12 games on the regular season schedule for Gonzaga and Michigan. Gonzaga Michigan BYU San Francisco Loyola-Marymount San Diego Pepperdine Loyola-Marymount St. Mary’s San Francisco Santa Clara San Diego BYU Portland Illinois Northwestern Indiana Ohio State Wisconsin Michigan State Penn State Illinois Penn State Michigan State Purdue Indiana Kelly Olynyk That’s not exactly a killer stretch for Gonzaga. San Francisco was good once, back when Bill Russell starred for the dons. The San Diego on that schedule is not to be confused with San Diego State, a team that is actually good. St. Mary’s isn’t as good as they’ve been the last few years and last time I checked Steve Nash no longer plays for Santa Clara. Pepperdine has a basketball team? Do you think the Zags would have run off 12 straight wins if they flipped schedules with the Wolverines? Do you think Michigan would have gone 3-4 in February with Gonzaga’s schedule? Meanwhile Michigan State is about to wrap up this 4-game stretch: vs Indiana, at Ohio State, at Michigan and vs Wisconsin – all teams ranked in the Top 25. I can’t help but wonder how many losses the Bulldogs would have if they played in the Big Ten. Instead they roll through a soft conference and get to claim a #1 seed in the NCAA Tournament? That makes no sense. How would they fare if they were in the ACC? They can have the #1 ranking, but it’s that top seed in the NCAA Tournament that I really can’t wrap my head around. It just seems to me that the teams in the power conferences are going to be punished for having to play tough conference schedules. Give Indiana Gonzaga’s schedule and I’m pretty confident the Hoosiers would be sitting at 31-0 right now. Instead they’ve gone through the grind in the Big Ten and dropped 3 conference games (they also lost to Butler in a non-conference tilt). Unless something shocking happens in the West Coast Conference tournament, Gonzaga will be a #1 seed in the NCAA Tournament. The problem is there will be a team more deserving of that seed, slotted as a #2 because they played in the Big Ten or ACC.  
THE BACKYARD
BEST OF MAXIM
RELATED ARTICLES

Gonzaga assures itself a short stay at #1

We would like to extend a congratulations to the Gonzaga Bulldogs, for earning themselves a #1 ranking in both the AP and Coach’s poll. It was the first time ever for the school. They are enjoying it, and have already set the stage for a quick exit by putting out a T-shirt celebrating the historic ranking. Mark Few has done a wonderful job of molding this into an extremely strong...

Kelly Olynyk Headlines WCC Awards

Gonzaga's Kelly Olynyk has been named Player of the Year in the West Coast Conference.

The Ultimate Bracket Buster: Is Gonzaga Really The Best Team In The Country?

This year’s college basketball season has been one of the craziest in recent memory because there is no dominant team. The Indiana Hoosiers were thought to have been that team until their recent slip up against Minnesota on Tuesday. When the AP Poll came out Monday, the new number one was the Gonzaga Bulldogs, a West Coast Conference team. It is only fitting that a non-power six...

Gonzaga goes back to work Tuesday

Gonzaga is the first team outside of the six major conferences to be ranked No. 1 since Memphis in 2007-08. You wouldn't guess that was the case as the Bulldogs prepared to practice Tuesday for the first time since making program history a day earlier with its first No. 1 ranking in The Associated Press' Top 25. The players casually shot around. No special banners hung...

No. 1 Gonzaga goes back to work

Gonzaga is the first team outside of the six major conferences to be ranked No. 1 since Memphis in 2007-08. You wouldn't guess that was the case as the Bulldogs prepared to practice Tuesday for the first time since making program history a day earlier with its first No. 1 ranking in The Associated Press' Top 25. The players casually shot around. No special banners hung...

No. 2 Gonzaga beats Portland 81-52

Portland coach Eric Reveno said his front line has been pretty effective most of the season. ''Our posts have done well against every post in the country that we played against that's not going to be a first-round draft pick,'' Reveno said after No. 2 Gonzaga beat Portland 81-52 on Saturday. Gonzaga dominated inside, outscoring Portland 42-10 in the paint. ...

Gonzaga has no trouble with Portland

Elias Harris had 20 points and nine rebounds as No. 2 Gonzaga beat Portland 81-52 on Saturday to stake a claim to its first-ever No. 1 ranking in The Associated Press' Top 25. Kelly Olynyk added 15 points and 11 rebounds for Gonzaga (29-2, 16-0 West Coast), which had already clinched the West Coast Conference regular season title and the top seed in next weekend's tournament...
Bulldogs News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.