Their three-point shooting is decent at 37.1%, but their team 50.4% shooting places them second among tournament teams. Their 77.6 points a game is 12th-best in college hoops.
Add to that the consistency that comes with Coach Few.
"If you need a sailboat to be guided through a storm, you want the best doggone captain out there, and that's Mark Few," Litos said.
Few's ability to adapt to situations and coach his players in the style he's crafted over 15 years gives Gonzaga the "steady guiding hand" that any team -- big or small -- needs in the tournament, Litos said.
Underdog? Ha, bring it
Spokane Councilman Ben Stuckart, a second-generation Gonzaga alum whose parents had season tickets in the John Stockton days (1980-1984, when the Hall of Famer played guard), said the team also has moxie.
"They're a special team. When they get their backs up against the wall, they push though," he said, pointing to the Oklahoma State game when a final-minute Gary Bell three-pointer helped Gonzaga topple the No. 22 Cowboys.
When the Zags take the floor at Salt Lake City's EnergySolutions Arena on Thursday, Stuckart expects his birthplace to be a "dead town." Everyone will be watching Gonzaga-Southern, he said.
Spokane is abuzz with Gonzaga's success. "Go Zags" and "Love Our Zags" signs adorn homes, yards, storefronts and car windows. During a city meeting on Tuesday, no business was addressed for 20 minutes because everyone wanted to talk Zags basketball, Stuckart said.
As for the "no-respect" talk, Stuckart brushes it off.
The second-smallest city to host the World's Fair, Spokane welcomes underdog status, and you won't hear from residents any "indignation about not getting respect," Stuckart said. "We're just happy to be from Spokane."
Since the 1999 run to the Elite Eight, Gonzaga "has been central to our identity as a city," he said, and it's been common in years past for people to have high hopes, idealistically jotting down Gonzaga as a Final Four team in their brackets.
"But this year, people are picking them to go all the way," Stuckart said. "We're ranked No. 1 in the polls. The next step is the Final Four, right?"
Said Litos, "Lord forbid they win it all. Then, party on."