Consider the fact that for only about four minutes of game time, Michigan State had the lead. Consider the fact that at this point in the season, polls are less about resumes and more about talent. Consider the fact that just because Gonzaga lost by four to the #2 team in the nation, that doesn't mean that they couldn't beat the #25 team in the nation.
Not to insult Maryland fans, but someone's gotta go if someone else gets in.
The big question mark that existed at the beginning of the season, it seemed, was Gonzaga's unproved talent (with a 3:1 underclassman to upperclassmen ratio, it's hard to argue in favor of ranking them with all the unproved names). But we just saw in East Lansing a team that came two minutes and thirty seconds away from beating what is, according to you guys, the second best team in the country.
The freshmen more than proved themselves, they made a statement: We're ready. Show us what you've got.
With Robert Sacre and Elias Harris in the paint and Demetri Goodson and of course Matt Bouldin on the perimeter, Gonzaga has shown they won't be missing Jeremy Pargo and Josh Heytfelt for too long. The freshman Elias Harris stepped up with 17 points and 9 rebounds, which led the Zags in both categories. Matt Bouldin, while he did force a few shots, grabbed 15 points and 4 assists. The Zags had four players with point totals in the double digits, compared to Michigan State's three.
So, Gary Parrish, AP voters and coaches, here is my challenge to you: In spite of the loss, rank Gonzaga. The talent is there; the resume will come after the Maui Invitational and Duke.