SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -- That wispy mustache shouldn't fool anyone.
Adam Morrison and his Gonzaga teammates are up there with the big
boys of college basketball -- in large part because there's more to
the Zags than just their superstar.
The Zags proved they're much more than a one-man show Saturday
in the second round of the tournament, defeating the Hoosiers 90-80
and making Indiana coach Mike Davis' resignation official despite
getting only 14 points from Morrison.
With Indiana defenders draping themselves over Morrison -- he of
the scraggly, boyish mustache that has provided plenty of
tournament snickers -- J.P. Batista had 20 points and nine rebounds,
Erroll Knight had 11 points and Sean Mallon had a career game with
15 points and 10 rebounds.
"People commit so many resources to stopping Adam that we try
to play off that," Gonzaga coach Mark Few said. "If you really
watched us, you can see that he's done a nice job of it, and the
group has done a nice job of it."
The victory got the third-seeded Bulldogs (29-3) out of the
first weekend of the tournament for the first time since 2001, back
when they were considered more plucky underdogs than the powerhouse
they've become. Gonzaga was ranked in the top 10 all season and
made the tournament for the eighth straight time.
"They were a third seed and they probably should have been a
one seed," Davis said. "They were the best three seed in the
tournament for sure."
And they knocked Indiana out, meaning Davis' next task is to
head back to Bloomington to clear out his office.
He announced his resignation last month, effective at the end of
the season. The end came despite a super effort from the
sixth-seeded Hoosiers (19-12), who nearly won this game from the
3-point line, scoring all but 10 of their 49 second-half points
"My first thought was, I was just proud of the boys," Davis
said. "Don't be sad for me. You should be happy for me because I
had a great opportunity to coach one of the greatest schools in
Next up for Gonzaga is UCLA in the Oakland Regional, where
Morrison will have another chance to make his case as the best
player in the country.
The junior forward certainly wasn't great against Indiana.
"It's not going to be my night every night," Morrison said.
"We still survive and win."
He shot 5-for-17, marking only the sixth time this season he's
been held under 20 points. He was frustrated, much as he was in the
first-round win against Xavier, and it boiled over early in the
second half when he started jawing with Roderick Wilmont.
"Let's not give us a lot of credit, OK," Davis said. "Because
he missed some shots today. He got a lot of looks. He still caught
Morrison and Wilmont each got technicals after their tiff,
though it was another T, 22 seconds later on Indiana center Marco
Killingsworth, that completely changed this game.
The technical, right after a personal foul, gave Killingsworth
four fouls and put him on the bench -- turning Indiana's strategy
into a 3-or-nothing game. The Hoosiers hit a bunch -- 13 to be exact
-- in the second half and kept the game within reach for most of it.
Robert Vaden went 6-for-13 from behind the line, Marshall
Strickland went 6-for-9 and A.J. Ratliff went 3-for-7, along with
doing a nice job on Morrison. For a brief moment, it looked as if
Davis' plan to trade 3-for-2 down the stretch might actually extend
his stay at Indiana.
It wasn't to be, though, and that was mainly because Indiana
couldn't stop Gonzaga's wide assortment of long, lanky guys
Mallon, the 6-foot-9 forward who was once envisioned as the
cornerstone of the Gonzaga program, matched his career high in
Batista easily won the matchup against Killingsworth (12
points), in large part because he stayed on the court longer.
Knight, a 6-7 swingman, overcame a 102-degree fever earlier in
the day, finished 4-for-5 from the floor and gave the Hoosiers fits
trying to cover him.
"We have some other players that can really make plays, and
they all did tonight," Few said.
With 18 seconds left in his troubled six-year tenure at Indiana,
Davis pulled Strickland from the game and the two shared a long hug
-- the senior guard burying his head in the coach's shoulder.
Then, Davis ended it with class, telling his players to simply
dribble out the clock and end it -- trailing by 10 and with no
chance to win.
He got a nice hand from the few Indiana fans left in the gym
when he came to courtside for a radio interview.
In the postgame news conference, his players offered their
"He's like a father to me," said Vaden, whose own dad died
last summer. "I love him with all my heart. I'm sure he loves me
forever. You've just got to move on."
And Strickland: "He helped me grow up. He tested me and really
brought a lot of great things out in me."
Listening to that, Davis simply lowered his head to his knees,
clearly overcome with emotion.
"I can't explain it," the coach said. "We've been through a
lot together. I'm just proud of those guys."