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Gonzaga returned to practice on Christmas Day and it was Media Day on Thursday at the MAC. Sam Dower Jr.'s health was the main topic of discussion but it's still not clear if the senior forward will be able to play in the WCC opener against Santa Clara.
The guess here is Dower's lower back will have to make measurable improvement in the next 48 hours if he plans on playing Saturday. He's limping — nothing like Saturday when he hobbled off the court — and hasn't practiced the last two days.
Meanwhile, Kevin Pangos' right toe is getting better, but it appears to be one of those nagging injuries that will be with the junior guard for quite a while.
More below in my unedited article that will run in Friday's S-R.
Media day Tuesday and the primary topic was the addition of forward Angel Nunez, who transferred roughly a year ago from Louisville.
Naturally, I put together a notebook on Kevin Pangos' toe, Przemek Karnowski's parents, Finals Week and Christmas wishes. You can read it here.
OK, I also checked in with Nunez, who adds to GU's thin frontcourt. He's the subject of my article for Thursday's S-R. I'll probably post it tonight.
Kevin Pangos made five 3-pointers and scored 27 points and the Zags had several other scoring options in a 90-74 victory over visiting WSU on Thursday night. The Cougars scored the last seven points to make the final margin 16.
Pangos has scored 60 points in two home wins over the Cougars and made the game-winning basket last year in Pullman in a 71-69 victory.
My unedited game story is below. Back in the morning with a day-after post.
Good evening. Back with a Gonzaga notebook, leading off with how Kevin Pangos spent part of his summer back in Canada. There's also notes on the question mark in the lineup — the '3', or small forward position — and who emerges as a team leader with the graduation of Rob Sacre.
Here's a link to my story that will run in Tuesday's S-R.
Gonzaga, in and out of the rankings a couple times this season, returned to the A.P. and ESPN/USA Today Top 25 polls at No. 24 after wins over Saint Mary's and Loyola Marymount last week.
The Bulldogs (20-4, 10-2), who face road games at Santa Clara on Thursday and San Francisco on Saturday, shares the A.P.'s 24th spot with Wichita State. Saint Mary's dropped from 16th to 21st in A.P. and from 13th to 16th in ESPN/USA Today after losing to Gonzaga 73-59. BYU is 29th, fourth in the A.P. receiving votes category.
GU freshman guard Kevin Pangos earned his third WCC player of the week award. Pangos scored 27 points in the victory over Saint Mary's and added 21 points and nine assists against Loyola Maymount. His closest competition was probably teammate Elias Harris (10 points, 10 rebounds vs. Saint Mary's and 17 points, 15 rebounds vs. LMU), but I believe teams are limited to one nomination. BYU's Charles Abouo was the only other player nominated.
Pangos hasn't committed a turnover in three games.
Programming note: Media day will be Tuesday.
Back with a notebook from today's media day (and a feature on Sam Dower coming Thursday). The article that will appear in Wednesday's S-R is on Gonzaga's freshmen backcourt duo of Kevin Pangos and Gary Bell Jr. (pictured above), who have been arguably the team's most consistent players. They've gone against several highly touted guard tandems, including Xavier's Tu Holloway and Mark Lyons, and more than held up.
More on the pair's contributions here.
Also, ex-Zag Ronny Turiaf (Washington Wizards) has been sidelined with a broken hand.
Spent a couple hours at Gonzaga on Monday, one for media day and one watching practice. I put together a notebook that will run in Tuesday's S-R. Here's a link.
Back with some notes, quotes and impressions from Gonzaga’s first practice.
OK, we’ll leave the impressions to senior center Rob Sacre. More below.
Gonzaga recruit Kevin Pangos will play on the World Select team that faces its U.S. junior counterparts tonight in the NIke Hoop Summit at the Rose Garden in Portland. More on Pangos and the matchup here (also a Q&A with Pangos). The World team is represented by eight countries. Pangos is from Ontario, Canada.
Here are the rosters for both teams.
The game is at 7 p.m., but it will be televised on Root Sports (former FSN) at 9:30 p.m.
As mentioned in the previous post, Canadian point guard Kevin Pangos has verbally committed to Gonzaga. Those I’ve talked to said his basketball IQ is similar to Dan Dickau’s and I’m guessing the Zags envision a future backcourt with Pangos and fellow 2011 recruit Gary Bell Jr. playing together (seemed to work OK with Dickau and Stepp, Hall and Santangelo).
Pangos said he played competitive hockey, volleyball and soccer before deciding in the last year or two to concentrate on basketball.
Just got off the phone with Kevin Pangos, who confirmed he has verbally committed to Gonzaga.
Pangos, a 6-foot-2 point guard who is a senior at Denison Secondary School in Newmarket (roughly an hour north of Toronto), joins GU’s impressive 2011 class (Gary Bell, Kyle Dranginis, Ryan Spangler and Chris Sarbaugh).
More in about 45 minutes.