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February 2011 Archives

Men's hoops: Seeds Set for Vegas

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Time to close the books on another memorable West Coast Conference regular season.  Saturday saw some more terrific down-to-the-wire games, and some pretty impressive history.

 

First, the scores:


Gonzaga 68, San Diego 31 - Bulldogs allow the fewest points in the program's Division I history in locking up a share of their eleventh straight West Coast Conference regular season title.  That's incredible.  The streak is the second longest in NCAA history.

 

Santa Clara 71, Pepperdine 68 - A Waves three-point try falls off as time expires, propelling the host Broncos to an important win.

 

San Francisco 77, Loyola Marymount 75 - The Dons were already the third seed in the tournament, and were able to eke out the victory here to claim their first ten-win WCC season since 1982.  They were able to avoid it in this instance, but the Dons are 4-0 in overtime in 2010-11. 

 

Saint Mary's 83, Portland 69 - The Gaels ride a strong second half to stop a three-game slide.  Saint Mary's earns a share of the West Coast Conference championship, its first in 14 years.

 

Next up, the standings:

 

1: Saint Mary's, Gonzaga         11-3

3. San Francisco                     10-4

4. Santa Clara                         8-6

5. Portland                              7-7

6. Pepperdine                          5-9

7: San Diego, LMU                  2-12

 

And now, the seeds for next week's Zappos.com West Coast Conference Men's Basketball Championships...

 

1.     Saint Mary's

2.     Gonzaga

3.     San Francisco

4.     Santa Clara

5.     Portland

6.     Pepperdine

7.     San Diego

8.     Loyola Marymount

 

Look for complete brackets with game times and more Sunday afternoon on WCCsports.com.  Meanwhile, we can't wait for Vegas next week!  See you at the Orleans.

 

Jeff

Men's hoops: A lot to be decided on teams' final day

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Well, here we go.  The final day of the 2011 WCC conference games is upon us.  A champion will be crowned - or perhaps, champions.  What do we know?  When the 2011 Zappos.com West Coast Conference Men's Basketball Championships begin a week from today in Las Vegas, San Francisco won't be there.  Or at least, they won't be playing.  The Dons have secured a three seed and will open on Saturday night.  We also know Pepperdine will be the sixth seed in the tourney.

 

What about the other six?  They are all up for grabs pending Saturday's action.  Here are the seeding possibilities:

 

1.  Saint Mary's or Gonzaga - Although they might share the title (San Francisco could finish in a three-way tie as well), Saint Mary's will be the top seed if they win or if Gonzaga loses Saturday.

 

2.  Saint Mary's or Gonzaga - Only way the Zags don't finish here is a Bulldogs win in San Diego AND a Gaels home loss to Portland.  Either way, these two teams earn a double bye.

 

3. San Francisco

 

4. Portland or Santa Clara - These two teams split their regular season meetings, but the Pilots hold a tiebreaker if Saint Mary's is the one seed.

 

5. Portland or Santa Clara

 

6. Pepperdine

 

7. San Diego or Loyola Marymount - The Toreros earn the tiebreaker by virtue of their recent win over Saint Mary's

 

8. San Diego or Loyola Marymount - Only way the Lions don't finish here is an LMU win Saturday in San Francisco and a San Diego loss to Gonzaga.

 

So there you have it.  Should be fun on Saturday night!  First up, Gonzaga at San Diego (6 p.m., 4 SD/FSN Northwest)...

 

Questions?  Comments?  Feedback?  Please contact me via the link below.

 

Jeff Tourial

Director of Communciations & New Media

WCCTV Report Card

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Can't make it to the tournament in Vegas this year? No problem! We've got you covered. 


I'm Prof. Dan Garrity from Gonzaga University. For 51 weeks every year, I'm the Director of Broadcast Studies here. But for one week...the first week of March...I get to coach an All Star team. I get the best broadcasting student from each team in the league and we form WCCTV. I'll teach them how to cover these kinds of events, and you get to do the grading. 


Each night of the tournament, we'll put on a live via internet show hosted by different students each night. They'll have highlights and interviews from every game that day...along with a feature story and something we hope will make you laugh. And it's entirely produced by our student crew. 


My congratulations to each of them for being selected, and my invitation to you to check out our work at WCCsports.com beginning at 11 pm, Friday, March 4th.


And if anyone has any tips on craps, get them to me quick--we're flying out in less than 2 weeks!


By Professor Dan Garrity

Gonzaga University


I can almost see the bright lights of Vegas from here

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It's hard to believe, but the 2011 Zappos.com West Coast Conference Basketball Championships are just two weeks from tipping off at the Orleans Arena in Las Vegas.  I don't know about you, but I can hardly wait.  With just two or three conference games remaining in the regular season, so much remains up for grabs on both the men's and women's sides. 

 

With three different ESPN networks running live college basketball programming - not to mention ESPN3.com (how amazing is that, by the way?) - and regional sports networks all over the country airing live games and other studio shows, this time of year is a college hoops lovers' dream.  That much you knew.  You also likely know that the NCAA men's championship is expanding this year from 65 teams to 68.  Three more at-large berths will be available this year.

 

So where does the WCC fit in?  Depends who you ask.  We've had some great guests on our weekly "WCC Live" show, such as ESPN bracketologist Joe Lunardi and collegerpi.com founder Jerry Palm.  I've also talked to several TV analysts and all seem to have varying opinions.  That's what makes it fun.

 

But what about the NCAA?  How do they sit in that room in Indianapolis and actually select the field and come up with a seeding for each team?  It's a complicated process.  Much of it is done in secrecy.  But, one thing's for certain: the committee members are thorough.  Here at the West Coast Conference, we have two committee reps assigned to us.  They are essentially charged with watching our teams play and knowing how teams are performing against key competition.  At the WCC office in San Bruno, Commissioner Jamie Zaninovich, Associate Commissioner Scott Leykam, and I have monthly calls with our two reps to talk about WCC teams and student-athletes.  We discuss strength of schedule, key injuries, upcoming games to watch - really anything we think might be valuable to them in assessing our teams.  And I'll say this: the two NCAA committee reps assigned to the WCC - both are Division I Athletic Directors elsewhere on the west coast - sure know their stuff.  They watch an awful lot of basketball, and they have a great perspective on where our teams lie within the national picture.

 

So who will go to the NCAA tournament representing the WCC?  It's too early to tell.  We know the winner of our tournament in Vegas gets an automatic bid.  But what about an at-large berth?  The consensus seems to be that Saint Mary's and Gonzaga would have a shot - for now.  But there's a lot of basketball to be played.  Saint Mary's is ranked 23rd nationally, but a loss last night at San Diego won't help.  However, the Gaels have a key showdown with No. 24 Utah State on Saturday in Moraga as part of the Sears BracketBusters event.  A win in that one (6 p.m., ESPN2) could go a long way in helping the Gaels' case should they come up short in Vegas.

 

And what about the Zags?  They played a killer non-conference schedule and flew over 16,000 miles to do it.  After a rocky start in the WCC that saw the Bulldogs drop three in a row for the first time in over 15 years, it seems as though Gonzaga is hitting its stride.  With Thursday night's victory over Santa Clara, the Bulldogs have won five straight conference games.  A huge showdown looms on Saturday, when Gonzaga and San Francisco - both 8-3 in WCC play - square off in Spokane (5 p.m., FSN Northwest).

 

At this point, a lot of questions remain.  Will Saint Mary's end Gonzaga's streak of ten straight WCC regular season titles?  Who will cut down the nets in Las Vegas?  What will happen on selection Sunday? 

 

To me, these questions are what makes this a fantastic time of year.  The answers will come in time.  I do know this much: it's gonna be a fun couple of weeks!

 

Questions?  Comments?  Suggestions?  Please contact me via the link below.

 

Jeff Tourial

Director of Communications and New Media

Don't miss an all-new episode of The Road to Las Vegas, available on-demand beginning Wednesday afternoon WCCsports.com.  Each week, The Road to Las Vegas will introduce you to West Coast Conference student-athletes both on-and-off the court as they race towards the 2011 Zappos.com West Coast Conference Basketball Championships at the Orleans Arena in March.  This week on the show, host George Devine has highlights from last week's WCC action.   Also on this week's show, the WCCsports.com crew takes viewers inside the production truck and behind-the-scenes of a recent WCC telecast on ESPNU.  New episodes of The Road to Las Vegas premiere Wednesdays on WCCsports.com, and can be viewed any time on-demand.

 

On Wednesday night, don't miss another edition of WCC Live - the weekly talk show that chronicles the West Coast Conference with live guests, contests, and more.  The hour-long show airs live every Wednesday from 8-9 p.m. PT, and can also be heard on-demand or downloaded free of charge to an mp3 player.

 

This week on WCC Live, host George Devine will chat live with San Diego senior guard Sam Child and Portland junior Natalie Day.  Also on this week's show, Gonzaga junior center Robert Sacre talks about his team's strong run of late, and Pilots' radio broadcaster Bill Johnson checks in with a live preview of two critical WCC match-ups for Portland this weekend at home.

 

WCC Live can be heard by visiting http://blogtalkradio.com/wccsports.  Fans can submit their questions for guests at any time to radio@westcoast.org; via Twitter (@WCCsports); or on Facebook (Facebook.com/WCCsports).

Feb. 9 WCC Live and Road to Las Vegas lineup...

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Don't miss an all-new episode of The Road to Las Vegas, available on-demand beginning Wednesday afternoon WCCsports.com.  Each week, The Road to Las Vegas will introduce you to West Coast Conference student-athletes both on-and-off the court as they race towards the 2011 Zappos.com West Coast Conference Basketball Championships at the Orleans Arena in March.  This week on the show, host George Devine has highlights from the first weekend of WCC February play.   After Saint Mary's run to the Sweet 16 a season ago, we take a look at how expectations have definitely been raised in Moraga.  Also this week on the show, San Francisco is off to its best conference start in 30 years.  We visit the Hilltop to meet sophomore hype man Mikey Williams.  New episodes of The Road to Las Vegas premiere Wednesdays on WCCsports.com, and can be viewed any time on-demand.

 

On Wednesday night, don't miss another edition of WCC Live - the weekly talk show that chronicles the West Coast Conference with live guests, contests, and more.  The hour-long show airs live every Wednesday from 8-9 p.m. PT, and can also be heard on-demand or downloaded free of charge to an mp3 player.

 

This week on WCC Live, catch live conversations with Pepperdine senior forward Mychel Thompson, Santa Clara junior forward Marc Trasolini, and Saint Mary's head women's coach Paul Thomas.  Also, Gaels' radio broadcaster Mike Bouve checks in with a live preview of two critical WCC match-ups for Saint Mary's this weekend.

 

WCC Live can be heard by visiting http://blogtalkradio.com/wccsports.  Fans can e-mail their questions for guests at any time to radio@westcoast.org; via Twitter (@WCCsports); or on Facebook (Facebook.com/WCCsports).


Questions?  Comments?  Suggestions for future guests?  Please shoot me an e-mail!


Jeff Tourial

Director of Communications & New Media

Second half of WCC hoops season starts Thursday...

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...so to get you ready to go, we've got a monster multimedia lineup for you on Wednesday on WCCsports.com.

Don't miss an all-new episode of The Road to Las Vegas, now available on-demand on WCCsports.com.  Each week, The Road to Las Vegas will introduce you to West Coast Conference student-athletes both on-and-off the court as they race towards the 2011 Zappos.com West Coast Conference Basketball Championships at the Orleans Arena in March.  This week on the show, host Ted Robinson has highlights from the final weekend of the WCC season's first half.   The radio voice of Portland basketball, Bill Johnson, chas with a pair of UP sharpshooters - Jared Stohl and Nemanja Mitrovic.  In the weekly "60 Seconds With..." segment, USF sophomore Bailey Barbour interviews teammate Ashley Boggs.  New episodes of The Road to Las Vegas premiere Wednesdays on WCCsports.com, and can be viewed any time on-demand.

 

On Wednesday night, don't miss another edition of WCC Live - the weekly talk show that chronicles the West Coast Conference with live guests, contests, and more.  The hour-long show airs live every Wednesday from 8-9 p.m. PT, and can also be heard on-demand or downloaded free of charge to an mp3 player.

 

This week on WCC Live, catch a live conversation with ESPN.com "Bracketologist" Joe Lunardi, who breaks down the WCC's standing in regards to the national field.  Portland freshman point guard Tim Douglas helped his team to a pair of big wins last week, and the WCC Co-Player of the Week will appear live on the show.  San Francisco is just one game out of first place on the men's side at the halfway mark.  Team broadcaster Pat Olson previews the Dons' second half.  In women's action, Pepperdine's Jazmine Jackson checks in for a live chat.  The Waves are just one game out of second place, and they host the team they're chasing - Saint Mary's - on Thursday night.

 

WCC Live can be heard by visiting http://blogtalkradio.com/wccsports.  Fans can e-mail their questions for guests at any time to radio@westcoast.org; via Twitter (@WCCsports); or on Facebook (Facebook.com/WCCsports).


Questions?  Comments?  Suggestions?  I'd love to hear from you...


Jeff