When you think of the top programs in college basketball schools like Duke, Kentucky, Kansas, and North Carolina are the ones that typically come to mind. Despite consistently being one of the best teams in the country, the Gonzaga Bulldogs have never gotten the recognition they’ve deserved. If you haven’t already, it’s time to start paying attention to the #1 team in the country.
Gonzaga is off to a great start this season. They are currently 3-0 and have beaten the previously 6th ranked Kansas Jayhawks, the Bruce Pearl led Auburn Tigers and, the 11th ranked West Virginia Mountaineers.
Drew Timme and Corey Kispert might be the best duo in the entire country. So far this season, Timmie has averaged 23 points and 6 rebounds per game while shooting 60% from the field. Additionally, Kispert has averaged 22 points and 5 rebounds per game while shooting 60% from the field, 45% from three, and 86% from the free-throw line. Not only are Timmie and Kispert talented, they are also sophomores and seniors respectively. Their experience will greatly help Gonzaga in the NCAA tournament.
Gonzaga isn’t viewed as a school that regularly attracts the top high school players. Despite that, they were able to land Jalen Suggs, who was widely considered one of the best incoming freshmen in the entire country. Suggs is an outstanding athlete who became the first person in Minnesota history to win the Mr. Football and Mr. Basketball awards in the same year. The Mr. Basketball award is given to the best high school basketball senior in Minnesota, while the Mr. Football award is given to the top high school football player in Minnesota and Suggs won both awards in 2020. The extremely talented freshman is part of the reason why Gonzaga is currently undefeated.
Gonzaga has two very tough non-conference games coming up against the Baylor Bears and Iowa Hawkeyes. After those two games, the rest of their schedule will be very favorable given that the West Coast Conference isn’t very strong this season. Saying Gonzaga will go undefeated might be premature even if they can beat Baylor and Iowa, but the Bulldogs do have the chance to be a special team this season.
Over the past four years alone, Gonzaga has made the national title game and an elite eight. Additionally, they would have been one of the favorites to win the national championship in 2020 if the tournament didn’t get canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Gonzaga has made 21 consecutive NCAA tournaments, which is the 5th longest streak in college basketball history. Gonzaga is one of the best programs in college basketball, and their team this year has a chance to be historically good.