The days of people overlooking Gonzaga basketball are long over. Everybody knows that Mark Few’s Bulldogs are a serious national contender year after year. However, we still tend to overlook how long Gonzaga has been a top-flight program and how many star players the program has produced. To prove our point, we decided to put together an all-time Gonzaga starting lineup. Take a look at this lineup and tell us that this team couldn’t go toe-to-toe with the best starting 5 from any other program.
PG: John Stockton
Before he became a 10-time NBA All-Star, Stockton was a star at Gonzaga, averaging close to 21 points per game as a senior. While not the flashiest or most athletic point guard to ever play the game, Stockton was a brilliant distributor and one of the best passers the game has ever seen.
With Stockton playing point guard, the fictional Gonzaga all-time starting 5 would have a chance to beat any team they face.
SG: Adam Morrison
You can hate Morrison’s mustache from now through eternity, but the guy could flat-out shoot. Things didn’t pan out for him in the NBA, but you’d be hard-pressed to find a lot of college players this century who were better shooters.
Morrison averaged 19.7 points per game during his three seasons at Gonzaga, including 28.1 in his final season when the Bulldogs went 29-4. While not a traditional shooting guard, he’d get plenty of looks with Stockton at the point.
SF: Rui Hachimura
His early returns in the NBA have been largely positive. Of course, there’s no doubt that Hachimura was a star in college, which is why he was a consensus All-American and a top-10 draft pick in 2019. By the end of his college career, Hachimura could score at all three levels, pass, rebound, and play defense.
Nobody he’s saying he’s a Hall of Famer, but he could go toe-to-toe with virtually any wing player to play college basketball in the last two or three decades and will likely go down as one of the best Gonzaga players of all-time.
PF: Ronny Turiaf
While nobody can accuse Turiaf of being a star in the NBA, he’d be critical for the all-time Gonzaga starting 5. Turiaf would rebound, play defense, and do all of the dirty work to help the talented players around him. He’s the type of hard-working glue guy that Gonzaga teams always seem to have.
It’s also worth noting that Turiaf was West Coast Conference Player of the Year in college, so he was a star at the college level and a perfect fit for the Gonzaga all-time starting 5.
C: Domantas Sabonis
After being an all-star in 2020, it’s clear that the younger Sabonis is on his way to becoming one of the best big men in the NBA, much like his father was. He left Gonzaga as a double-double machine, averaging 17.6 points and 11.8 rebounds per game in his final season. Sabonis has become just that in the NBA.
With him and Turiaf in the paint while Stockton, Morrison, and Hachimura roam the perimeter, it’s not hard to see why Gonzaga’s all-time starting 5 could go up against any other program in college basketball.