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Monday, March 25, 2019  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Stories tagged: John Blanchette


UPDATED: Sun., March 24, 2019, 11:28 p.m.

Five years in a row: Gonzaga’s Sweet feat

With the first weekend of the tournament now over, fewer than five percent of college basketball’s teams 353 teams are still playing. Kansas and Kansas State, both No. 4 seeds …


UPDATED: Sat., March 23, 2019, 11:23 p.m.

John Blanchette: Brandon Clarke leaves everyone in Salt Lake City starstruck after dominating performance against Baylor

All those “watch lists” for college basketball’s many awards that managed to miss on Brandon Clarke altogether this year, or scramble to include him at midseason, or leave him off …


UPDATED: Fri., March 22, 2019, 8:43 p.m.

John Blanchette: Baylor’s Rem Bakamus, John Jakus know their dancing partner far too well ahead of Gonzaga showdown

At the edge of a merry Baylor locker room after the Bears bounced Syracuse from the NCAA Tournament on Thursday night, John Jakus pinned himself against a wall and weighed …


UPDATED: Thu., March 21, 2019, 10 p.m.

John Blanchette: With WCC clunker left in the past, Gonzaga returns to high-flying form in rout of Fairleigh Dickinson

We took their temperature, over and over. We wondered if the Gonzaga Bulldogs had really kicked that bad case of influenza WCC that laid them low in Las Vegas.


UPDATED: Thu., March 21, 2019, 9:53 a.m.

John Blanchette: Fairleigh Dickinson coach Greg Herenda knows what it takes to beat the odds

If Greg Herenda makes it to the Final Four this April with his Fairleigh Dickinson Knights it would be … well, it would be a damned miracle, OK?


UPDATED: Tue., March 19, 2019, 10:17 p.m.

John Blanchette: Geno Crandall knows all about dogged determination at NCAA Tournament

Though they all seem to get lumped together as happy Cinderellas, there are subtle degrees of underdog baked into March Madness.


John Blanchette: Doc Ball answers all your First Four questions

Learned and wise about college basketball as he is, Charles Barkley can’t cover everything, especially when it comes to all that’s complicating Gonzaga’s merge from the on-ramp to the fast …


John Blanchette: Depth and defense against offense and athleticism makes for tough choice in fictional battle between Gonzaga’s best

Picked up those inseparable buddies and Zags fans, Hysteria and Horse Sense, hitchhiking back from Las Vegas after cashing in their return flight tickets to put everything on Gonzaga to …


UPDATED: Sun., March 17, 2019, 9:58 p.m.

John Blanchette: On a topsy-turvy Selection Sunday, Gonzaga avoids another upset, holding on to No. 1 seed

So in case the Gonzaga Bulldogs still didn’t have that top-line feeling back after Terrible Tuesday, they were given an imprimatur on Selection Sunday. And they had nothing to do …


UPDATED: Fri., March 15, 2019, 11:15 p.m.

John Blanchette: For Gonzaga, move away from RPI in college hoops has been nothing but NET

Before Zion’s shoe went kablooey and “strong-ass offer” became the meme of the moment, college basketball’s ranking outrage of this season was some post-Thanksgiving indigestion.


UPDATED: Thu., March 14, 2019, 11:21 p.m.

John Blanchette: After split with Ernie Kent, red flags still surround men’s hoops job at Washington State

Hiring Ernie Kent was tired thinking on the part of Chun’s predecessor, Bill Moos; he couldn’t have done any worse taking a flyer on a younger, cheaper comer. Constantly rolling …


UPDATED: Tue., March 12, 2019, 11:11 p.m.

John Blanchette: Gonzaga’s faceplant in WCC Tournament may be most painful come Selection Sunday

Have you heard about the new March Madness Savings Time? If you’re the Gonzaga Bulldogs, you set your clocks back to a No. 2 seed.


UPDATED: Tue., March 12, 2019, 7:28 p.m.

John Blanchette: Basketball aside, a heartbreaking day for the GU family

For the Gonzaga Bulldogs’s women’s basketball team, there is family and there is FAMILY, and now they know both the distinction and how it gets blurred together when life issues …


UPDATED: Mon., March 11, 2019, 10:49 p.m.

John Blanchette: Killian Tillie’s reemergence gives Gonzaga the house edge at WCC Tournament

Anyone have the guts to get this wager down before tipoff Monday night? Killian Tillie, tournament MVP.


UPDATED: Mon., March 11, 2019, 7:26 p.m.

John Blanchette: Gonzaga down, but never out in gutsy victory over Saint Mary’s

Their gruesome falls to the court and the injuries that forced them to hobble out of Orleans Arena on crutches after the Monday afternoon women’s semifinals of the West Coast …


John Blanchette: 1993-94 team paved way for Gonzaga’s high postseason expectations

Before Gonzaga took up more or less permanent residence in the high rise that is the NCAA Tournament bracket, the Bulldogs had to get past the doorman. And before that, …


UPDATED: Fri., March 1, 2019, 11:06 p.m.

John Blanchette: Balancing act driving changes for state hoops tournaments

This was the small-ball world when Mike Colbrese took on the job as executive director of the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association 25 years ago. Lots of things were simpler then, …


UPDATED: Fri., March 1, 2019, 9:48 a.m.

John Blanchette: Carl Crider harvests new memories in Oakesdale

One of the B-est things still remaining about the B tournament is taking a look across the court and being unable to tell if the guy with the probing gaze …


UPDATED: Thu., Feb. 28, 2019, 2:18 p.m.

John Blanchette: Odessa’s Ryan Moffet serves up State B’s first must-see moment with 48-point outburst

But just as college basketball has managed to go on without Zion, the B tournament doesn’t stop just because Brock Ravet of Kittitas hasn’t laced up his shoes yet – …


UPDATED: Sat., Feb. 23, 2019, 11:41 p.m.

John Blanchette: Goodbyes no longer reserved for only the seniors in college basketball home finales

Just think of the Zags who missed out on the big farewell – Adam Morrison, Austin Daye, Kelly Olynyk, Domantas Sabonis, Nigel Williams-Goss, Zach Collins.


UPDATED: Fri., Feb. 22, 2019, 11 p.m.

John Blanchette: Aye, there’s the snub: Give these epic films a sporting chance

Columnist John Blanchette imagines this year’s Oscar-snubbed films with a sports twist.


UPDATED: Thu., Feb. 21, 2019, 11:09 p.m.

John Blanchette: Josh Perkins reaches the pinnacle of success at ‘Point Guard U’ with career assist record

Records both take you out of the moment and amplify it at the same time, and with the volume knob in Spokane cranked up to 11 on anything Zags, it’s …


John Blanchette: As Pepperdine coach, Lorenzo Romar relishes any chance he can get at Gonzaga

That’s right, Lorenzo Romar wants to be in a position to play Gonzaga more often.


UPDATED: Sat., Feb. 16, 2019, 8:35 p.m.

John Blanchette: Gonzaga women’s backs up against the bubble after another last-second loss to BYU

Even a full month out from Selection Monday, there was an angsty little subtext mixed into Saturday’s doings at McCarthey Athletic Center that went beyond how much space exists between …


UPDATED: Tue., Feb. 12, 2019, 10:39 p.m.

John Blanchette: Gonzaga’s Sophie Whittle works even harder now that she’s at the top of the collegiate tennis world

The news, as is increasingly the case these days, was delivered via text – two of them, in fact, from her coaches. Though not so much news as congratulations, so …


UPDATED: Sat., Feb. 9, 2019, 11:37 p.m.

John Blanchette: Killian Tillie’s latest injury setback adds fuel to Gonzaga’s already red-hot fire

There are rulebooks, and coin flips to decide who kicks off, and the once-a-game center jump to, well, keep things fair. But in the bigger sense, there’s no fairness doctrine …


UPDATED: Sat., Feb. 9, 2019, 11:23 p.m.

John Blanchette: Football’s success gives Washington State Athletic Director Pat Chun extra momentum for Year 2

In his first 12 months as athletic director at Washington State, Pat Chun has turned over 25 percent of the staff, overseen a record year in fundraising and been the …


Q&A: Washington State’s Patrick Chun talks about his first year as athletic director in Pullman

Spokesman-Review columnist John Blanchette talks with Washington State athletic director Patrick Chun, one year into him taking over the job.


UPDATED: Fri., Feb. 8, 2019, 10:34 p.m.

John Blanchette: Gonzaga fans won’t soon forget Brandon Clarke’s record-breaking season

The domination enters a third decade and the blowouts, amazingly enough, get ever bigger. The worshippers at McCarthey Athletic Center are left to seek other, more exotic, Gonzaga basketball thrills.


UPDATED: Thu., Feb. 7, 2019, 11:27 p.m.

John Blanchette: Gonzaga’s West Coast Conference domination a statement to the college basketball world

Fifteen seasons back, the Gonzaga Bulldogs clinched the West Coast Conference regular season title on Feb. 14, something akin to sinking the 8-ball with five of the other guy’s targets …