An Outlook On The Gonzaga Opener - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

An Outlook On The Gonzaga Opener

by William Maupin
willmaupin@gmail.com


One game is a small sample size, but the statistics present many reasons to be excited about this year’s Gonzaga Bulldogs. 

Here are a few numbers from the Zags’ game against Bryant University to take note of. The Zags scored 1.28 points per possession in this game. Last year they led the nation with 1.15 points per possession. 

Gonzaga was one of the best offensive teams in the country last year, thanks to the highly efficient play of Kelly Olynyk and Elias Harris. With both now playing in the NBA, expecting a drop off in offensive production would be very reasonable. As of now, the offense looks to keep humming along.

Part of the reason why Gonzaga was such a good team last season was they were very balanced in the scoring department. Kelly Olynyk was the focal point of the offense, but almost anybody could lead the team in scoring on any given night. This balance appears to have carried over into this season as five Zags scored at least ten points. Sam Dower led the way with 21 points. Providence transfer, Gerard Coleman, began his Gonzaga career with 15 points. Kevin Pangos and Gary Bell Jr. each had 14 and Przemek Karnowski chipped in 10. One player from every position scored in double figures.

Finally, without Olynyk and Harris, the expectation for this season was that the offense would run through the backcourt of Bell and Pangos. In this game the Zags showed they once again have a dominant frontcourt. 56 of their 100 points were scored in the paint. 

In addition to Dower and Karnowski, Gerard Coleman also scored all five of his field goals in the box. It’s been a long time since Gonzaga has had an athletic wing player who can get to the bucket. That’s exactly what they have in Coleman.

It’s not likely that the team will continue to put up numbers like this. It is however a very promising sign that they were able to do this right out of the gate.

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