The 2018-19 West Coast Conference begins as it has for some time now – with Gonzaga tabbed to be the league favorite. However, this year, there could be some changes as to which teams land in the #2 – #6 spots. If someone can separate themselves from what is likely to be a logjam in those five positions, then the conference may land two teams in the NCAA Tournament.
By Go-To Guy, LMU Lions Roar Contributor
The Lions are off to a 5-0 start for only the 4th time in school history. The streak includes the program’s first win over the Big East’s Georgetown Hoyas (4-1) and the first win over the Mountain West’s UNLV Rebels (3-1) in Las Vegas since 1973. Continue reading
Ivan Alipiev | Loyola Marymount | 6-foot-8 | Shot-creator
The 18-year-old Alipiev shined as Bulgaria’s best player in Sofia, creating offense for both himself and his teammates. He’s a smooth ball handler who can operate at different speeds, pull up off the bounce or get into the lane for kickouts to open teammates. He’s still a streaky shooter (30.1 percent), but Alipiev improved in that area since last summer and should have a big freshman season at Loyola Marymount, where he committed after spurning interest from high-level prep schools and high-major colleges.
With average athleticism, Alipiev has to answer questions about his defense before he can be considered a sure NBA prospect, but he should be an instant-impact player in the West Coast Conference.
New Athletic athletic director, Craig Pintens, shares his vision for LMU here.