-- Cincinnati and Gonzaga came into the Jimmy V Classic looking for a marquee victory after a series of high-profile losses. Tonight, both got exactly what they were looking for as the Bearcats shocked No. 5 Oregon, 77-52, and the Bulldogs defeated North Carolina State, 69-60, at sparsely filled Continental Airlines Arena.
"When these opportunities are presented, I think you've got to seize them," Gonzaga Coach Mark Few said.
The Ducks (6-1) did just the opposite. They said entering the game that they came east seeking respect and national media attention. Instead, they were dismantled by the Bearcats, who used a 13-0 run to take a 17-4 lead five minutes into the game.
"I'd have been shocked if I wasn't here," Bearcats Coach Bob Huggins said.
Cincinnati (5-2), which had lost to Xavier and Dayton in its only major nonconference games thus far, proved more than game for the Ducks' open-court, up-tempo style.
Cincinnati guard Tony Bobbitt scored a career-best 29 points to lead the Bearcats. The junior reserve had scored 28 points in the season's first six games, and his previous career high was eight points.
The Bearcats kept in check Oregon's much-hyped tandem of Luke Jackson (nine points) and Luke Ridnour (10). Both have averaged 20 points this season.
Gonzaga (6-3), which had lost to Indiana, Kentucky and Georgia and needed overtime to beat Washington and Washington State, needed validation. The Bulldogs found it in the lane, outrebounding the Wolfpack 61-35, including 25 offensive boards.
Gonzaga used an 8-0 second-half run to take a 54-47 lead with 7 minutes 12 seconds remaining and never let N.C. State (5-1) within four points after that.
The Wolfpack's 11-for-35 shooting from outside -- -including a game-high 22 points from Scooter Sherrill -- -was not enough to counter a 38-10 Gonzaga advantage in the lane.
Gonzaga center Richard Fox had seven points and 17 rebounds, power forward Cory Violette had 12 points and eight rebounds and reserve Ronny Turiaf had nine points, five rebounds and four blocked shots.