Gonzaga stays humble despite ranking - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Gonzaga stays humble despite ranking

It's no secret that Gonzaga wrapped up an undefeated season in West Coast Conference play last week and rose to its first ever No. 1 ranking in the AP Poll.

On Tuesday, not out of character, the Bulldogs showed humility and appreciation for the ranking.

"It was a great honor seeing us being No. 1 in the nation," Elias Harris said. "It kind of shows you all the hard work, all the practice hours we have put in here, pay off."

But ...

"At the end of the day, it's a number and it doesn't mean anything if we don't come out and play hard and take everybody serious," Harris continued. "We can't start dreaming around, cause there's still so much basketball that needs to be played this season. We need to stay humble and work hard and go game-by-game."

That's a sentiment shared by the rest of the team. While the ranking is nice, it doesn't mean anything after the ball is tipped.

"It's an honor to be thought of, I guess, by the writers and the coaches and to be worthy of being the No. 1 team in the country," head coach Mark Few said. "But, I think this [is] a very grounded team. I think we all understand we got a lot of work left to do."

That work will be focused on the WCC Tournament this week, although the Bulldogs earned a bye until the semifinals on Saturday with their regular season conference title. For the next couple days, Gonzaga will focus on its core tenets in practice before preparing for a specific team or two.

If there's any questions if the Bulldogs will be preoccupied with that No. 1 ranking come tournament time, there's motivation enough to get the job this weekend.

"We didn't win this last year, just like we didn't win the league last year," Harris said. "We're hungry to go get it, we're hungry to get that back in our grasp. Right there, that's all the motivation you need, is the fact we didn't win it last year."