This article is part of our NCAA Tournament Preview series.
It's put-up-or-shut-up time for Gonzaga. The nation's most consistent winner outside the power conferences earned a one-seed by blasting through the regular season. The Zags were simply dominant in the WCC, until they lost to BYU on Feb. 25. They ran the table in the conference tournament and now face a region that includes a potential second-round matchup against a team that has made its first Big Dance and a second seed that they already beat this season. The last time Gonzaga was a 1 seed in 2014, they were bounced in the second round by Arizona.
No. 1 Gonzaga Bulldogs
Just how dominant were the Zags in WCC play? Before losing their perfect mark against the Cougars, they had beaten their first 17 conference opponents by an average of 28.2 points. BYU came the closest in only losing at home to Gonzaga by 10 points. The Zags are as skilled and big as any major conference team. In fact, the backcourt of Nigel Williams-Goss and Jordan Mathews transferred out of the Pac 12. Williams-Goss leads the team with 16.9 points and 4.8 assists. The size comes from center Przemek Karnowski (12.6 points, 6.0 rebounds), freshman center Zach Collins (10.2 points in 17.1 minutes) and Missouri transfer Johnathan Williams (10.2 points, 6.5 rebounds). In the WCC, only BYU had enough size to combat the Bulldogs. Most teams in this region simply won't be able to match up.
No. 2 Arizona