WCC Ready For Big Monday

WCC Ready For Big Monday

Oct. 5, 2005

SAN BRUNO, Calif. - The West Coast Conference 2005-06 men's basketball schedule will be switching to a Saturday-Monday format to allow the WCC to participate on ESPN's `Big Monday' television package, announced Commissioner Michael Gilleran.

"The West Coast Conference is honored to compete on ESPN's `Big Monday' television package," said Gilleran. "We are excited about the added exposure that a well-branded television package like `Big Monday' will bring to our student-athletes, our institutions and the WCC as a whole. We are thrilled to be continuing our outstanding relationship with ESPN with this opportunity to showcase the quality of basketball that is played in the West Coast Conference." added Gilleran.

The WCC will share the `Big Monday' stage with the Western Athletic Conference. The WCC and the WAC inhabit the 9:00 pm (PST) time slot. The lead-in games to the WCC-WAC time slots will be Big East Conference and the Big 12 Conference contests.

Basketball season tickets will be available for sale online beginning October 14. Also make plans to attend the "Bronco Bash" on October 29.

In addition to four Big Monday time slots, ESPN is slated to televise nine additional WCC contests on its family of networks, making this year's ESPN television package the largest in WCC history.

The WCC `Big Monday' package tips off with Gonzaga at Santa Clara on January 9, 2006. On January 16, Loyola Marymount travels to Spokane to face the Bulldogs in the second `Big Monday' showdown. The third WCC `Big Monday' contest showcases a pair of 2005 NCAA Tournament teams as Saint Mary's heads to Gonzaga on February 6, in a game that will also be featured as part of ESPN's `Rivalry Week' package. The WCC's `Big Monday' package is wrapped up on February 20, as Gonzaga travels to Malibu to take on the Pepperdine Waves.

For the third consecutive year, ESPN is slated to televise both WCC Tournament semifinals and the championship game on its family of networks.

The WCC is coming off of a banner 2004-05 season in which the conference established itself as one of the best men's basketball conferences in the country. Last season, the WCC reached an all-time high Ratings Percentage Index (RPI) of No. 7 among the 31 Division I conferences. The WCC finished the season ranked ahead of other highly regarded conferences such as Conference USA, the Missouri Valley Conference, the Mountain West Conference, the Atlantic-10 Conference, and the Western Athletic Conference. The only conferences listed ahead of the WCC were the six "BCS" conferences.

The WCC was rewarded with three teams advancing to postseason for the fifth time in conference history, including sending two teams to the NCAA Tournament for the third time in the last four seasons. Gonzaga and Saint Mary's College earned bids to the Big Dance, while the University of San Francisco accepted an invitation to participate in the National Invitational Tournament (NIT).

Complete WCC-ESPN Television Package

Date GameNetworkTime
Nov. 18 Connecticut at PepperdineESPNU 8:30 p.m.
Dec. 31 Saint Joseph's at GonzagaESPN2 3 p.m.
Jan. 7 Gonzaga at Saint Mary'sESPNU 8 p.m.
Jan. 9 Gonzaga at Santa ClaraESPN29 p.m.
Jan. 14 Pepperdine at GonzagaESPNU 8 p.m.
Jan. 16 Loyola Marymount at GonzagaESPN 9 p.m.
Feb. 6 Saint Mary's at GonzagaESPN29 p.m.
Feb. 11 Stanford at GonzagaESPN 6 p.m.
Feb. 18 Gonzaga at Loyola MarymountABC3 p.m.
Feb. 20 Gonzaga at PepperdineESPN2 6 p.m.
Mar. 5 WCC Championships SemifinalESPN25 p.m.
Mar. 5 WCC Championships SemifinalESPN27 p.m.
Mar. 6 WCC Championships FinalESPN6 p.m.