Jan. 26, 2013; Spokane, WA, USA; Gonzaga Bulldogs guard Drew Barham (43) is fouled by San Francisco Dons guard Tim Derksen (32) during the first half at the McCarthey Athletic Center. Mandatory Credit: James Snook-USA TODAY Sports

WCC Game Preview: Gonzaga vs. San Francisco


Gonzaga Bulldogs (11-2) vs. San Francisco Dons (8-5)

Date: Monday, December 30, 2013

Location: McCarthey Athletic Center, Spokane, WA

Time: 6:00 PM PST

TV: ROOT Sports NW & RM

Video: theW.tv

Last Season: Gonzaga won both meetings.  They defeated the Dons

PROJECTED STARTERS

Gonzaga

David Stockton, 7.3, PPG, 4.5 APG

Kevin Pangos, 18.2 PPG, 4.2 APG

Gary Bell Jr, 12.7 PPG, or Kyle Dranginis 6.8 PPG, 2.8 APG

Drew Barham, 6.4 PPG or Sam Dower Jr, 13.8 PPG, 6.8 RPG

Przemek Karnowski, 9.8 PPG, 8.0 RPG

San Francisco

Matt Glover, 9.4 PPG, 4.o APG

Avry Holmes, 9.8 PPG, 2.5 APG

Tim Derksen, 9.6 PPG

Cole Dickerson, 14.0 PPG, 7.8 RPG

Mark Tollefsen, 12.7 PPG

KEYS TO THE GAME

Gonzaga

Utilize Nunez and Coleman: These two Big East transfers will have to step up, especially if Sam Dower Jr, and Gary Bell Jr. are unable to play.  While Angel Nunez played well against Santa Clara in his first game of the season, Gerard Coleman hasn’t scored a single point in the past 20 days.  These two players will be weapons and possess the quickness and athleticism that is hard to come by in the West Coast Conference, and if Gonzaga can utilize these two pieces, they should be able to win against San Francisco.

San Francisco

Solid point guard play from Matt Glover: He did not transfer to San Francisco from Penn State expecting to play point guard this season.  But he was thrust into that role after Cody Doolin left the program.  He needs to limit his turnovers and look to get the ball down low to Cole Dickerson and Kruize Pinkins.  Avry Holmes also needs to be steady with the ball in his hands as he can provide ball handling on the perimeter as well.

PREDICTION

If Dower and Bell were fully healthy, I would say that the Zags would easily win this game at home.  But if those two are a no show and Gonzaga cannot guard San Francisco’s big three on the front line (Dickerson, Tollefsen, and Pinkins), it is going to be a long night for the Zags.  I predict a 74-70 victory for San Francisco because I believe their front line will just beat up Gonzaga’s front line, as Przemek Karnowski will not be able to match up with anyone on USF’s front line (except the sparingly used Tao Xu).

Tags: Basketball College Basketball Featured Gonzaga Gonzaga Bulldogs Popular San Francisco San Francisco Dons WCC West Coast Conference

  • Kevin O’Brien

    The post will be an issue for the Zags with no Dower in the lineup. However, USF is woefully bad on defense (317th in Adjusted Defense according to Ken Pom), and the Zags, even without Dower or even Bell I think will be fine. In fact, I think this could be a nice confidence booster game for Coleman and Nunez, especially Coleman who seems to be in Few’s doghouse as of late. I think USF will put up points and play well for a little bit, but their lack of ability on defense will allow this to get away from them over the course of the game.