Gonzaga Bulldogs — 2016 Syracuse NCAA Tournament scouting report

Gonzaga basketball beat writer Jim Meehan from The Spokesman Review calls in to chat about the Sweet 16 with Wes Cheng on The Juice on the Cuse Podcast hosted by SNY.tv. The Juice Online Senior College Basketball Analyst and 2003 National Champion Andrew Kouwe also calls in to discuss Syracuse basketball’s NCAA run.

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Here are the highlights from the show:

Wes Cheng: Tell me about the 2015-16 Gonzaga season.

Jim Meehan: Just about the craziest season they’ve had in a long time. Most of the seasons, they’ve had a smooth path to the NCAA Tournament. This season, it’s been all over the map. They got beat early. They lost their starting center, Przemek Karnowski, he’s a force at both ends of the floor. It took them a lot of time to adjust. They had to win the WCC to punch their ticket to the NCAA. And that’s what they did. They beat Portland. They beat BYU in the semifinals. And then they beat St. Mary’s in the championship, and that knocked St. Mary’s out of the tournament. So they caught fire at the right time.

WC: What is the key matchup for this game?

JM: From Syracuse’s end, it will be the effectiveness of the 2-3 zone. How that works against Gonzaga’s offense. I know these two teams played probably five years ago in the NCAAs, I covered the game. It was a mismatch. Syracuse won by 22. And the Zags guard didn’t hit shots. They have a little success inside with their big guys getting inside on the glass. But 65 points for them, they shot 15 percent from 3. There’s no way that’s going to work. I think Gonzaga’s guards are going to be forced to make shots, and if they can do that, they might be able to put up some numbers.

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Rundown:

1. Gonzaga basketball beat writer Jim Meehan from The Spokesman Review calls in
2. Season recap
3. Scouting Domantas Sabonis and Eric McClellan
4. Key matchups
5. Senior College Basketball Analyst and 2003 National Champion Andrew Kouwe calls in
6. Looking at the first two rounds
7. How to stop Sabonis?
8. Predictions
9. Closing Thoughts and Wrap Up

» Related: How did Syracuse basketball get to the Sweet 16?

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Wes Cheng

About Wes Cheng

Wes has worked for Rivals.com covering the New York Knicks, as well as for Scout.com covering Syracuse athletics. Wes has also worked for the South China Morning Post (Hong Kong) and reported on the NBA and MLB for the New York Sportscene. A native of Long Island, New York, Wes graduated from Syracuse University in 2005. Follow him on Twitter @ChengWes.
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