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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883


GU men’s basketball: Bulldogs vs. Orange

Gonzaga guard Eric McClellan is key to successful outcome against Syracuse. (Dan Pelle /SR)
Gonzaga guard Eric McClellan is key to successful outcome against Syracuse. (Dan Pelle /SR)

NCAA TOURNAMENT | Midwest Region - Sweet 16

No. 11 Gonzaga Bulldogs (28-7)

vs. No. 10 Syracuse Orange (21-13)

Friday, March 25, 6:40 p.m. | United Center, Chicago

Watch: TV: CBS | Online: March Madness Live | Stats: GameTracker


Outlook: CHICAGO – The task is completely different, but the mindset needs to be the same.

On Gonzaga’s first possession last Saturday, Eric McClellan penetrated the lane and challenged Utah standout center Jakob Poeltl. McClellan’s shot didn’t fall, but Domantas Sabonis hit a put-back.

On GU’s next possession, Josh Perkins drove inside and tried a floater that the talented Poeltl soared to block. After the game, beaming assistant coach Brian Michaelson said it was precisely the aggressive approach coaches wanted to see.

The staff hopes to see more of the same Friday when 11th-seeded Gonzaga (28-7) takes on No. 10 seed Syracuse (21-13) at the United Center with an Elite Eight berth on the line. (Continue reading: Gonzaga ready to attack to counter Syracuse zoneJim Meehan,


Further reading: Eric McClellan’s philosophy: ‘Get back out there’ - Jim Meehan,

Blanchette: Current Zags may be Mark Few’s best coaching job John Blanchette,

Notes: Poker, fishing, basketball among things uniting Mark Few and Jim Boeheim - Jim Meehan,

Famed Syracuse 2-3 zone defense gives opponents fits: Gonzaga’s and Syracuse’s defenses haven’t taken a back seat through two NCAA tournament games to any of the remaining 14 teams.

Gonzaga does it primarily with an improving man-to-man and an occasional zone. The Zags have allowed 111 points, third lowest of Sweet 16 squads.

Syracuse does it almost entirely with a 2-3 zone. Opponents know it is coming, study, prepare and often struggle to reach their customary offensive production. The Orange have yielded a tournament-low 101 points. (Continue reading) - Jim Meehan,

Blanchette: Don’t look now, but Zags are crazy-good defenders John Blanchette,

Gonzaga will have hands full against Syracuse - Jim Meehan,

Blanchette: Zags pick right time to display resume John Blanchette,

Photo Gallery: Legacy of success: Gonzaga’s NCAA tournament appearances through the years -

External links: [11] MBB Faces [10] Syracuse in Sweet 16 Friday -

Orange Take on Zags in Sweet 16 -

NCAA GameCenter -



Follow GU reporter Jim Meehan on Twitter during the game @SRJimM.

Also, follow columnist John Blanchette on Twitter during the game @JPBlanchette.



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