March Madness is well under way and everybody’s brackets are in worse shape than people who blog about March Madness. Like the Hunger Games, the nation has collectively been in a state of shock while watching top contenders fall in early rounds. Also like the Hunger Games, many of the most popular players have names that sound like they were made up by an old man having a stroke (Przemek Karnowski could easily be fighting alongside Katniss Everdeen, which is a movie idea I would pay thousands of dollars to see).
Against all odds, Gonzaga has found itself once again in the Sweet Sixteen. For a team that was at one point unsure if it would even make the tournament, Mark Few and the gang are gaining momentum and are looking sharper than they had throughout the entire regular season. With success comes fans, but there are all sorts of people who will throw their support behind the team from Spokane.
1. The GU Student Who Has Been To Every Game
During the regular season, this student lined up at 4 AM for a 7:30 game against Eastern Oregon. They can tell you all about Dustin Triano’s high school stats or what Kyle Dranginis got on his last philosophy exam. They’ll probably name their first child Przemek Domantas-Few, which will probably end in divorce and years of psychological torment for the child. Totally worth it.
2. The GU Student Who Has Been To Absolutely No Games But Feels Obligated To Support Them Anyways
They went to Gonzaga not knowing a thing about basketball and now they’re pretty sure Wiltjer is someone they should know, so they’re making progress. They’ll be cheering for the Zags (or do we call them Bulldogs?), but they won’t be devastated if they lose. To be honest, they’re just pretending to be interested so they’ll get invited to parties.
3. The Kid From Syracuse Who Likes Being Edgy
“Hey man! Go Syracuse, right?”
“I actually hate sports but I’m rooting for Gonzaga. I’m not going to conform to supporting a team just because my school tells me to, you sheep.”
“This is why we don’t invite you to parties, Daniel.”
“Call me Salazar.”
-A conversation at Syracuse, probably.
4. The Person Who Roots For The Underdog No Matter What
After watching every Disney sports movie, this girl loves choosing the team that everybody else wrote off. Devastated by the loss of Austin Peay to Kansas, they’re looking for a new team to support. Gonzaga’s the lowest seeded team, so I guess it’ll be them!
5. The Fans That Loved Arvydas Sabonis
They were casually watching the Gonzaga and Utah game when they heard the announcer mention that Domantas Sabonis was the son of legendary NBA star Arvydas Sabonis. Tenderly stroking the Trailblazer poster on their wall with eyes full of tears, this fan made a vow at that moment to support the Zags as if their own son was playing for them. If Portland drafts Domantas, this is the guy that will weep tears of joy shirtless in the streets.
6. The Person Who Loves The West Coast But Hates Oregon
This guy has three tank tops with the phrase “West Coast, Best Coast” on it. Thanks to the “East Coast bias” among the NCAA, the only two teams left in the tournament are Gonzaga and Oregon, but Oregon’s fans are really annoying. I guess it’s time to buy a Gonzaga jersey and figure out where Spokane is.
7. The Family Member Of A GU Student Who Can Only Recognize Gonzaga On The Court
Every Facebook post from this fan recently has either the phrase “Go Zags” or a Minion from Despicable Me in it. They’re the “cool mom” of their book club because they can pronounce Domantas and Przemek.
8. The Virginia/Iowa State Fans Who Think Syracuse Would Be More Of A Challenge
The winner of the Virginia and Iowa State game will play the winner of Gonzaga and Syracuse. Lulled into a false sense of security by the Zags’ history of early elimination in the tournament, they’re rooting for Gonzaga because they think it’ll be easy. Good luck trying to root for us without falling in love with the always adorable Mark Few. He looks like a more lovable Kevin Bacon.
9. The Alumni Who Has Done Absolutely No Work The Past Few Weeks
Wearing their old Kennel Club shirt under their suit, the loyal alumni has been streaming every tournament game the Zags have been in with their mouse on an Excel tab in case their boss comes over. They’ve been doing all the chants under their breath and are convinced they’re part of the reason the Zags have been so successful. If they get fired, they’ll get fired as a Zag, damn it.
10. The Company That Makes Red And Blue Confetti
They made the horrible business decision to only produce red and blue confetti, but will it finally pay off this year? Every round the Zags advance to is a step closer to their father getting off their back about investing thousands of dollars into a business that has yet to make a sale.
11. The People Who Actually Know How To Pronounce “Gonzaga”
The more games Gonzaga plays in, the more he’ll get to correct his coworkers. “Actually, it’s Gon-ZAG-ah, not Gon-ZAWG-ah,” he’ll say with a smug grin on his face to the last person who would ever be nice to him in the office.
12. The Guy Who Had GU Winning It All As A Joke But Is Now Kind Of Hopeful
This guy made one bracket where Gonzaga beat the Jayhawks just to anger his friend who goes to Kansas, but this is starting to get real. Let’s go Gon-zawg-ah.
13. The Band Kids From Gonzaga Who’ve Been Practicing Their Dance Moves All Week
14. The Guy Who Chose His Brackets By Picking The Teams With The Funniest Names
Now that Chattanooga is out, it’s all on Gonzaga to carry his bracket. “It sounded like gorgonzola, the cheese” is the only defense he really has for picking GU, but it’s paying off.
This year, HBO decided to make a series documenting the journey of the Zags to the tournament. Think about how good they’d look if this was the year the Zags won it all. Maybe they’ll feature Eric McClellan in the next season of Game of Thrones.
16. Bloggers Who Need Subject Matter For The Next Few Weeks
The Elite Eight Foods That Remind Us Of Kyle Wiltjer? The Final Four Reasons Everyone At Gonzaga Looks Like Michael Cera? Five Reasons The Real Championship Is Friendship? These are just some of the brilliant ideas that an underpaid blogger in need of new material could come up with.