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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

‘To me, it’s a hoax’: The Zags’ Final Four clout has Jimmy Kimmel questioning whether Gonzaga even exists — again

Late night host Jimmy Kimmel appears during a virtual commencement ceremony for graduating Gonzaga seniors on Sunday, Sept. 6, 2020.   (Gonzaga University)
By Riley Utley For The Spokesman-Review

Despite having about 7,000 students who pay thousands upon thousands of dollars in tuition to go to Gonzaga University, comedian Jimmy Kimmel still does not believe it exists.

Back in 2019, during the last NCAA Tournament, Kimmel made six videos throughout March building up the humorous conspiracy theory that Gonzaga does not exist.

Now, as the Zags work their way toward a national title and an undefeated season, Kimmel has decided to bring the tiff with this “imaginary” university back into the limelight, saying , “If QAnon wants a real conspiracy, take a look at Gonzaga!”

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With LA hometown team UCLA making the Final Four and playing GU, Kimmel apparently decided now was the time to rekindle the conspiracy .

“UCLA will face off against the fictional school known as Gonzaga,” Kimmel said in his show’s monologue on Thursday. “Gonzaga is undefeated because you can’t beat something that does not exist. They’re set to play UCLA on Saturday. You know for the last few years I’ve been trying to show the world that there isn’t any proof that Gonzaga exists outside of this basketball team they put together to make everybody think there is a university in Spokane, but no one’s been able to do it.”

He furthered his argument by saying the only famous person to attend the school was Bing Crosby and you can’t confirm that he went there because he is dead. He joked that he looked up Bing Crosby’s movies and showed that his list of movies spells out “Gonzaga is fake.”

“They tried to get me to come up there, probably so they could kill me and silence me but I’m no dummy, that’s not happening,” Kimmel said. “Have you ever met anyone who’s ever gone to Gonzaga? Of course not. Like I’ve said before, it’s like Wakanda.”

Wakanda is a mythical country and home to Marvel hero Black Panther.

On Twitter after this video was posted, many GU alumni and students responded by posting photos of their diplomas from the university and boasting that John Stockton is also a famous alumnus from GU.

When Kimmel made these allegations the first time, many people from the GU and Spokane community posted videos, tweeted and even created T-shirts to show that Gonzaga does indeed exist, opening, as Kimmel said, a “Spo-can of worms.”

There were news packages showing live footage of GU’s campus and students, videos like the one of The School of Law’s Dean, Jacob Rooksby, and Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson swearing on a Bible that the school was real, along with many posts on social media.

In Kimmel’s most-viewed video about GU , he had his right-hand man, Guillermo, investigate the GU basketball team while they were in Anaheim in 2019 for the NCAA Tournament. It has over a million views.

This conspiracy continued in September 2020, when Kimmel made an appearance at GU’s virtual graduation. He said congratulations to the students who think they are enrolled in the university.

As the Zags move into the Final Four, Kimmel’s conspiracies about the “fake” school apparently will also continue.

“To me, it’s a hoax,” Kimmel said in his graduation message.