Opinion: No. 1 Gonzaga has one glass ceiling left to shatter. It better happen soon.

Asia's Tech News Daily

When we last saw Gonzaga on a basketball court, they hadn’t just lost a national championship to Baylor. They had allowed one of the most annoying narratives in sports to live for another year. 

Despite their prominence over the last decade, including two trips to the final game of the college basketball season, a recruiting machine that now regularly attracts NBA lottery picks and a No. 1 preseason ranking in the Ferris Mowers Men’s Basketball Coaches Poll, there’s still a stereotype around Gonzaga specifically and programs from outside the power conferences more broadly that they can’t win a national championship. 

Opinion: No. 1 Gonzaga has one glass ceiling left to shatter. It better happen soon.
© Robert Deutsch, USA TODAY Sports Gonzaga lost to Baylor in last season’s national championship game.

Going back to Memphis in 2008, Butler in 2010 and 2011 and a host of schools that have gotten to the Final Four but no further, the only modern era national champion from outside the major conferences remains UNLV in 1990. 

From NFL plays to college sports scores, all the top sports news you need to know every day.

For the sake of college sports, that needs to change — and fast. 

These are perilous times for the majority of the 358 programs playing Div. 1 men’s basketball this season, the vast majority of whom look a lot more like Gonzaga institutionally than Michigan or UCLA.

Though the odds of recreating the Gonzaga phenomenon are long, the very idea of a school in Spokane, Washington, with 5,000 students going from its first-ever NCAA Tournament appearance to one of the best programs in the country within 15 years was aspirational. It showed everyone what’s possible for a school that gets into the tournament, pulls a couple of upsets, builds a fan base and invests. 

LEFT OUT: Five snubs from the men’s college basketball preseason Top 25

AT THE TOP: Gonzaga makes history as preseason No. 1 in Ferris Mowers poll

POLL: Ferris Mowers Men’s Basketball Coaches Poll

And yet, at this moment in history, it’s fair to wonder whether the Gonzagas and Butlers still represent the egalitarian pathway to prominence that the NCAA Tournament offers, or whether the dream of small schools competing with the big boys will ultimately end up being buried in a time capsule. 

When West Virginia coach Bob Huggins told ESPN last week that the major conferences should split off and hold their own postseason tournament, it horrified a lot of traditionalists and those who believe the NCAA Tournament’s inclusiveness is a major part of its popularity. 

“Those Cinderella schools are putting 200 people, at best, in their gym,” Huggins said. “We’re putting 14,000.”

Whether Huggins is right or wrong on the merits, he’s not necessarily an outlier within the college sports power structure. And with the NCAA’s power teetering on multiple levels, there are forces ready to pounce over the next few years and leverage the threat of a complete breakaway to tilt the financial and competitive balance even more toward the biggest and richest schools. 

This could happen in multiple ways. Over the next few months, the NCAA will complete a restructuring process through a so-called “constitutional convention,” which will undoubtedly result in more rule-making autonomy and power for the schools playing football at the FBS level. 

People close to that process have suggested privately that changes to the structure of the NCAA Tournament could fall within that purview, including potentially a change in the way automatic bids are apportioned. 

What could happen with automatic bids

Right now, all 32 conferences within Division I have an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament. That concept is fundamental to the notion of March Madness, whether it’s Maryland-Baltimore County pulling off an upset of Vermont in the America East title game and then beating No. 1 seed Virginia six days later, or Gonzaga emerging as an unknown from the West Coast Conference in 1999 and making a long-shot run to the Elite Eight. 

But what if the big conferences decide that the tournament should have fewer automatic bids and more at-larges, theoretically opening up spots for more of their own teams? Last year, there were four No. 16 seeds ranked below 200 in the Ken Pomeroy efficiency ratings. The No. 15 seeds were ranked between No. 103 and No. 178. 

For the most part, those teams are not competitive in the NCAA Tournament. A lot of those games are blowouts — as they should be, given that those teams generally are barely in the top half of Division I. It would undeniably make the tournament field stronger and more of the early round matchups competitive if the number of automatic bids were limited such that only the highest-rated champions of smaller conferences got in. 

However, one of those No. 15 seeds last season was Oral Roberts, a team from the Summit League that was ranked No. 152 in KenPom on the day it played  — and beat — Ohio State in the NCAA Tournament’s first round. Then two days later, Oral Roberts beat Florida, becoming just the second team seeded that low to make the Sweet 16.

So what makes the NCAA Tournament the cultural phenomenon that it is? What provides the value for the eight-year, $8.8 billion television contract? Is it the brand names like Kentucky and Duke, or is it the sheer unpredictability of an Oral Roberts and the sense that anyone can make a run?

I would argue it’s both, but maintaining that balance isn’t going to be easy. With so many changes to the amateur model being foisted on college sports and conferences realigning from top to bottom around football concerns, the high-revenue athletic programs have different needs than the rest of Division I and are unsure if the NCAA is the best vehicle to administer them.

Not only do the big football-playing schools have less in common with the Wagners and Cal State Northridges than ever, but they also have all the leverage in the world to cut them off at the knees. 

Don’t like us taking more for ourselves? OK then, how would you like nothing? 

It’s ironic that this conversation is happening at a time when Gonzaga’s program is at the peak of its powers. Not that the Bulldogs or the basketball-centric Big East schools would be in any real trouble if somehow the big schools broke away — those big brands would surely find their way into the mix — but Gonzaga’s very existence implies how important it is that college basketball remains a land of equal opportunity for programs that would never have a shot in a sport like football. If not, what’s the point for a lot of these schools of even sponsoring Division I basketball? 

But Gonzaga’s prominence also underscores why this conversation has become so polarizing. Up until the last couple of years, it’s been a great story for college basketball to capitalize on but not much of a threat to take the spot of a power conference blueblood. 

After reaching 31-0 last season before losing to Baylor, and now adding top recruit Chet Holmgren to the roster, Gonzaga is so close to winning that national championship and completing the journey from one of the sport’s little guys to the mountaintop. 

We may look back in a few years and see that chance taken away. The power structure may never allow another Gonzaga to happen again. The Bulldogs are running out of time to shatter that final glass ceiling before the big schools try to permanently affix it over the heads of everyone else who aspires to follow in their footsteps. 

Opinion: No. 1 Gonzaga has one glass ceiling left to shatter. It better happen soon.
Opinion: No. 1 Gonzaga has one glass ceiling left to shatter. It better happen soon.
Opinion: No. 1 Gonzaga has one glass ceiling left to shatter. It better happen soon.
Opinion: No. 1 Gonzaga has one glass ceiling left to shatter. It better happen soon.
Opinion: No. 1 Gonzaga has one glass ceiling left to shatter. It better happen soon.
Opinion: No. 1 Gonzaga has one glass ceiling left to shatter. It better happen soon.
Opinion: No. 1 Gonzaga has one glass ceiling left to shatter. It better happen soon.
Opinion: No. 1 Gonzaga has one glass ceiling left to shatter. It better happen soon.
Opinion: No. 1 Gonzaga has one glass ceiling left to shatter. It better happen soon.
Opinion: No. 1 Gonzaga has one glass ceiling left to shatter. It better happen soon.
Opinion: No. 1 Gonzaga has one glass ceiling left to shatter. It better happen soon.
Opinion: No. 1 Gonzaga has one glass ceiling left to shatter. It better happen soon.
Opinion: No. 1 Gonzaga has one glass ceiling left to shatter. It better happen soon.
Opinion: No. 1 Gonzaga has one glass ceiling left to shatter. It better happen soon.
Opinion: No. 1 Gonzaga has one glass ceiling left to shatter. It better happen soon.
Opinion: No. 1 Gonzaga has one glass ceiling left to shatter. It better happen soon.
Opinion: No. 1 Gonzaga has one glass ceiling left to shatter. It better happen soon.
Opinion: No. 1 Gonzaga has one glass ceiling left to shatter. It better happen soon.
Opinion: No. 1 Gonzaga has one glass ceiling left to shatter. It better happen soon.
Opinion: No. 1 Gonzaga has one glass ceiling left to shatter. It better happen soon.
Opinion: No. 1 Gonzaga has one glass ceiling left to shatter. It better happen soon.
Opinion: No. 1 Gonzaga has one glass ceiling left to shatter. It better happen soon.
Opinion: No. 1 Gonzaga has one glass ceiling left to shatter. It better happen soon.
Opinion: No. 1 Gonzaga has one glass ceiling left to shatter. It better happen soon.
No. 1 Gonzaga Bulldogs (Last year’s record: 31-1) 2. UCLA Bruins (22-10) 3. Kansas Jayhawks (21-9) 4. Villanova Wildcats (18-7) 5. Texas Longhorns (19-8) 6. Michigan Wolverines (23-5) 7. Purdue Boilermakers (18-10) 8. Baylor Bears (28-2) 9. Duke Blue Devils (13-11) 10. Illinois Fighting Illini (24-7) 11. Kentucky Wildcats (9-16) 12. Oregon Ducks (21-7) 13. Alabama Crimson Tide (26-7) 14. Houston Cougars (28-4) 15. Arkansas Razorbacks (25-7) 16. Memphis Tigers (20-8) 17 (tie). Ohio State (21-10) 19. Florida State Seminoles (18-7) 20. North Carolina Tar Heels (18-11) 21. Maryland Terrapins (17-14) 22. Auburn Tigers (13-14) 23. Connecticut Huskies (15-8) 24. St. Bonaventure Bonnies (16-5) 25. Virginia Cavaliers (18-7)

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Opinion: No. 1 Gonzaga has one glass ceiling left to shatter. It better happen soon.

Internet Explorer Channel Network
Asia's Tech News Daily
News Related

OTHER NEWS

Megastar Chiranjeevi and Ram Charan donate Rs 25 lakh each for Andhra Pradesh flood relief

Chiranjeevi and Ram Charan have donated Rs 25 lakh each to Andhra Pradesh flood relief. Unprecedented heavy rainfall lashed Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu and caused massive flooding. Megastar Chiranjeevi ... Read more »

IMD predicts rainfall over parts of Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Haryana today

© Provided by Zee News New Delhi: The India Meteorological Department (IMD) on Thursday (December 2, 2021) morning predicted light rainfall over parts of Delhi, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan.  ... Read more »

Omicron may not evade all immunity: 4 New findings by South African doctors, scientists

© Provided by Hindustan Times A hospital worker ensures people practice social distancing at a hospital near Johannesburg, South Africa,  (AP) Omicron, the new variant of Covid, officially reported first ... Read more »

Delhi gasps for breath as air quality remains in 'very poor' category, AQI at 312

© Provided by Zee News New Delhi: The air quality in the national capital continued to remain in the `very poor` category on Thursday morning, according to the System of ... Read more »

News updates from HT: Complaint filed against Mamata Banerjee for ‘insulting national anthem', and all the latest news

© Provided by Hindustan Times West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee addressing media, in Mumbai on Wednesday. (ANI) Here are today’s top news, analysis and opinion. Know all about the ... Read more »

Ralf Rangnick wants Timo Werner reunion at Manchester United and other transfer rumours

Timo Werner is reportedly on Manchester United’s radar in light of Ralf Rangnick’s appointment as the interim manager’s former players continue to be linked with moves to Old Trafford. RB ... Read more »

Emmanuel Macron calls Boris Johnson ‘un clown' in charge of a ‘circus'

Emmanuel Macron has privately branded Boris Johnson a “clown” in charge of a “circus”, according to a French newspaper. © REUTERS French President Emmanuel Macron welcomes a guest at the ... Read more »

Channel crossings: Emmanuel Macron reportedly branded Boris Johnson an 'clown' amid diplomatic spat

Satirical newspaper Le Canard Enchaine reported on comments made by Mr Macron on a visit to Croatia last Wednesday - hours after 27 people drowned in the Channel. Read more »

Hilaria Baldwin reflects on heartbreaking conversations with children about Rust shooting

© Provided by Cover Media Hilaria Baldwin Hilaria Baldwin has had “heart-wrenching” conversations with her children about the tragic death of Halyna Hutchins on the set of Rust. In October, ... Read more »

Daniel Jones needs to show Giants more than grit

Daniel Jones turned to his left to answer a question, and then to his right to answer another, moving his head like a guy who … well … like a ... Read more »

Kreider, Shesterkin lead Rangers past Flyers for 4th in row

NEW YORK (AP) — Chris Kreider scored his 16th goal and Igor Shesterkin stopped 33 shots to help the New York Rangers beat the Philadelphia Flyers 4-1 on Wednesday night ... Read more »

Blind Emirati poet's powerful song of hope celebrates UAE's Golden Jubilee

© Provided by The National Singer Israa Al Amiri lends her voice to a song created by an Emirati poet for the UAE’s Golden Jubilee celebrations. Photo: Amr Waheed A ... Read more »

IND vs NZ, 2nd Test: Wankhede Wicket to Come Under Focus as Kohli's India Take on New Zealand

© Provided by News18 IND vs NZ, 2nd Test: Wankhede Wicket to Come Under Focus as Kohli’s India Take on New Zealand Winning a Test match overseas carries more heft ... Read more »

WTA suspends all tennis tournaments in China over Peng Shuai safety concerns

© Provided by Zee News The Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) on Wednesday (December 1) announced the immediate suspension of all tournaments in China due to concerns about the well-being of ... Read more »

Ministry of Defence sets target of doubling female recruits by 2030

The Ministry of Defence (MoD) will aim to more than double its number of female recruits as part of a series of changes following a report into the bullying and ... Read more »

Razer's top execs offer to take firm private, valuing it at $3.2 billion

1 / 2Razer’s top execs offer to take firm private, valuing it at $3.2 billionCEO of Razer Tan and non-executive director Lim pose during the debut of the company in ... Read more »

Western Australia, a state almost no one can visit, to pitch itself to tourists as ‘safest place in the world'

Photograph: Chameleons Eye/REX/Shutterstock WA premier says the state will loosen Covid-19 border restrictions in ‘a couple of months’, but those trying to get home are unimpressed Get our free news ... Read more »

Australia politics live update: Scott Morrison announces investigation into allegations against Alan Tudge; parliament sits for final day of the year

LIVE – Updated at 04:01 © Photograph: Lukas Coch/AAP Prime minister Scott Morrison speaks during the final question time of 2021. Follow all the day’s news.   04:01 Libby Coker ... Read more »

As Japan's Princess Aiko turns 20, what her ‘boring' coming-of-age reveals about an imperial family in crisis

Observers agree a statement released on Aiko’s behalf to mark her 20th birthday was kept as vanilla as possible to deny the Japanese tabloids more fodder It comes as Japan ... Read more »

Rep. McMorris Rodgers 'hopeful' modern science will sway public opinion against abortion

Washington Republican Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers told Fox News Wednesday she is “hopeful” modern developments in science and technology will help turn public opinion on abortion. “I am hopeful that ... Read more »

PSA: You Can Watch Hallmark Christmas Movies Even If You Don't Have Cable

© Seth Johnson The most wonderful time of the year is officially here. From now through December, Hallmark Channel and Hallmark Movies & Mysteries is airing 41 brand-new Christmas movies. ... Read more »

Liverpool semakin matang kendali suasana derbi

© Provided by Sinar Harian PENGURUS Liverpool, Jurgen Klopp menyifatkan pemain The Reds telah belajar mengendalikan suasana unik perlawanan derbi selepas menewaskan seteru setempat Everton 4-1 dalam perlawanan Liga Perdana ... Read more »

Ex-Port Orange police sergeant gets 5 years probation in elderly exploitation case

Former Port Orange Police Sergeant Steven Braddock and his wife Mary Braddock were sentenced on Tuesday to five years probation after they were accused of exploiting Braddock’s elderly mother, who ... Read more »

First Omicron case in U.S. adds to global alarm over virus variant

1 / 2First Omicron case in U.S. adds to global alarm over virus variantPeople take coronavirus disease (COVID-19) tests at a pop-up sidewalk testing site in New York TOKYO/WASHINGTON (Reuters) ... Read more »

At home with Jack Guinness: inside The Queer Bible author's east London apartment after a colourful, DIY renovation

(Juliet Murphy) Find someone who talks about you as lovingly as Jack Guinness does his east London apartment. Sitting in his kitchen, the style connoisseur huddled over the dining table ... Read more »

Caught & Bowled! Rahul Tewatia gets married to Ridhi Pannu at luxury hotel

© Provided by Mid-Day India cricketer Rahul Tewatia got married to Ridhi Pannu at The Umrao, a luxury hotel in New Delhi on Sunday. He Instagrammed this picture  on Tuesday ... Read more »

Tate scores 32, rallies short-handed Rockets past Thunder

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Jae’Sean Tate scored a career-high 32 points and added 10 rebounds, seven assists and five blocked shots, sparking a fourth-quarter rally to lead the short-handed Houston ... Read more »

Bucks beat Hornets on Antetokounmpo's final-seconds layup

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Giannis Antetokounmpo scored on a driving layup with two seconds left to give Milwaukee a 127-125 victory over the Charlotte Hornets on Wednesday night, the Bucks’ eighth ... Read more »

Sikander Kher: Took time to find Daulat again

© Provided by Mid-Day Taking inspiration from his mother, Kirron Kher — who returned to the judges’ panel of India’s Got Talent after battling cancer — Sikander Kher focuses on ... Read more »

Estrada scores 20 to carry Hofstra past Princeton 81-77

HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. (AP) — Aaron Estrada matched his career high with 20 points as Hofstra edged past Princeton 81-77 on Wednesday night. Omar Silverio had 17 points for Hofstra (4-4). ... Read more »

Swain, Gabbidon carry Yale to 82-72 victory over Lehigh

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (AP) — Azar Swain tossed in 23 points and Jalen Gabbidon scored 22 to propel Yale to an 82-72 victory over Lehigh on Wednesday night. Matthue Cotton ... Read more »

Miller's three-point night helps Canucks topple Senators 6-2

OTTAWA, Ontario (AP) — J.T Miller scored and added two assists to lead the Vancouver Canucks to a 6-2 win over the Ottawa Senators on Wednesday night. Luke Schenn, Tyler ... Read more »

Santa Barbara County sheriff's officials investigating shots heard after Vandenberg Village altercation

Dec. 1—An altercation between a Vandenberg Village resident and several suspects is under investigation by the Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office after multiple shots were reportedly heard on Polaris Avenue, ... Read more »

18-year-old man shot multiple times on West Newlove Drive in Santa Maria

Dec. 1—An 18-year-old man sustained multiple gunshot injuries Tuesday on West Newlove Drive and was transported to the hospital for treatment, according to a Santa Maria Police spokesman. Dispatchers received ... Read more »

Average of two girls aged 10 to 14 give birth daily in Paraguay, Amnesty finds

Photograph: Cesar Olmedo/AP Longstanding plague of child abuse and extreme abortion laws fuel crisis, report says An average of two girls between 10 and 14 give birth every day in ... Read more »

Deltona man charged in fatal shooting of Deltona High School student at house party

Xyrus Zelaya is remembered as a kind, bright person. The 16-year-old was fatally shot in Deltona in October. A 43-year-old man has been arrested in the fatal shooting of a ... Read more »

The Flash's Candice Patton Reveals What Iris Isn't Allowed To Wear Anymore

Barry Allen’s powers on The Flash may seem like he can do just about anything, but his on-screen wife and journalist extraordinaire has some things that she can’t do anymore ... Read more »

Liz Carr on joining 'The Witcher': 'A dialect coach taught me how to speak the Elven language!'

After starring as Clarissa in Silent Witness, Liz Carr joins fantasy show The Witcher season 2, starring Henry Cavill (aka Superman) as monster hunter Geralt of Rivia, which is released ... Read more »

Dakota Johnson and Olivia Colman look chic at The Lost Daughter event

© Provided by Daily Mail MailOnline logo They both star as leading ladies in the new film The Lost Daughter. And actresses Dakota Johnson and Olivia Colman both looked typically ... Read more »

Ghislaine Maxwell trial LIVE – Latest coverage as Clinton and Trump on pilot list amid Epstein's private island claims

THE sex trafficking trial of Jeffrey's Epstein's alleged “madam” Ghislaine Maxwell started on Monday, and Lawrence Visoski, Epstein's former pilot who is testified for the prosecution, claimed former President Donald ... Read more »
On free-english-test.com you will find lots of free English exam practice materials to help you improve your English skills: grammar, listening, reading, writing, ielts, toeic