Some Quick Hits on Reaffirming the Fact that Gonzaga is the Best Team in the State of Washington (Also Maybe the Country…)

Washington’s big three of basketball schools, Gonzaga, the University of Washington and Washington State University, have all had a good deal of success in the past decade. Each has made it to the Sweet Sixteen while producing numerous pro players.

It should be noted that historically, and in general, UW and WSU are good programs. But this year has been a down year for them both.

  • GU has one more win (27) than UW (15) and WSU (11) combined.
  • Gonzaga’s RPI is 10th in the country, Washington is 74th and WSU chimes in with a resounding thud at 184th. Yikes.
  • The Zags BPI (or Basketball Power Index) per is fifth in the country. U of W comes in at 72nd, and Wazzu rounds out the group again at number 99.
  • Gonzaga has the same number of conference wins in the month of February than the Huskies do all season.
  • Gonzaga has more conference wins in the last ten days than WSU has all year. (It’s apples to oranges when you compare the WCC with the Pac 12, but the leagues are pretty even against each other by my count, with the WCC taking three scalps to the Pac 12’s four.)
  • Gonzaga has two losses all year; WSU has two in the last six days.
  • Gonzaga is in line for at least a number-two seed, probably higher, in the NCAA Tournament according to ESPN Bracketologist Joe Lunardi. Lunardi has UW as a bubble team… for the NIT. (WSU didn’t make even make it that far.)
  • GU is ranked #2 in the latest AP and USA Today Polls. Neither state school received a single vote.
  • On that topic, the Zags got more number-one votes, or votes by a voter that list GU as the top team in the nation, than either state school got for entry into the polls. (Stephen F. Austin got more AP votes than either Wazzu or U-Dub. That’s the state of things.)
  • The team from Spokane boasts wins over four schools with top 50 RPIs. Those would be Kansas State, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State and St. Mary’s twice. The teams from Seattle and Pullman have a combined two. Both of which belong to the Dawgs.
  • Gonzaga ranks ninth in the country in points per game. UW makes the cut, or not, at 163rd in the land and WSU again rounds out the pack with a less-than-pedestrian 262nd overall ranking in points a game. The overall numbers, GU scores 78.6 points a game. UW checks in at 67.8 points a contest and WSU scores an underwhelming 63.6 points a game.
  • The Bulldogs’ high-octane offense is also an efficient one; they are second in the country with a .509 field goal percentage. UW is nearly seven percent worse and 163 spots down the line, being ranked 165th in the country with a .435 field goal percentage. WSU barely sneaks into the top 230 (yikes…) with a 227th overall ranking in field goal percentage, shooting a (well eh…) .422 percent from the field.
  • GU has as many losses total as UW does by 18 points.
  • GU lost two games by 11 and 1 point(s) respectively. UW has lost five games by 11 points or more. WSU has lost four by 12 points or more including a 37-point waxing from Kansas.
  • The Zags have five wins against teams who are either ranked or received votes for the rankings. The state schools have one win of the like between them, which would be UW’s win over Cal.
  • Gonzaga has five “quality wins” outside of conference and eight overall. UW has four, three of which came in conference and two of which were against Arizona State. WSU has zero quality wins.
  • Against Power Six conferences, Gonzaga is 7-1 with the only blemish coming on a night where Brandon Paul went off for 35 for Illinois. UW played only three games against other Power Six schools, only winning one. WSU played one less game against other big schools and lost both of their contests by an average of 19 points.

I’ve made my case; do you think the Zags are the best team in the state? Maybe the country? What do you think?

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