No ear-piercing crescendo of noise from 6,000 jammed inside the McCarthey Athletic Center after a highlight-reel dunk or clutch shot in the closing seconds. Gonzaga basketball won’t look the same at home games with fans expected to be benched by COVID-19 safety protocols. It sure as heck won’t sound the same.
Without playing a game, the numbers certainly are lining up for Gonzaga.
The Kennel Club, regarded as one of the best student sections in the country, is working with the athletic department to figure out ways to still have an impact despite not being allowed in the Kennel.
In early March, it looked as if 2020 was going to be a bounteous year for the West Coast Conference -- six different schools with 20 or more wins, three teams a lock for the NCAA Tournament and a national title contender in Gonzaga.
Moments after last week’s FanFest event, Gonzaga coach Lisa Fortier set the tone for the rest of the women’s basketball season.
The offseason came with mixed results for Kyle Smith.
The first two seasons went almost perfectly for Mike Hopkins. A season for building a foundation and trust was followed by a season where everything meshed and Washington won a Pac-12 regular-season title and made a return to the NCAA Tournament.
The Pac-12 expected to get six, maybe even a record-tying seven teams, into last season's NCAA Tournament.
In normal times, in the second year of a coaching regime, game philosophy and team personality could be expected to come into clearer focus.
If this season looks like the mother of all rebuilding projects at Washington State, Kamie Ethridge is quick to disagree.