NCAA Bracket 2012: No. 7 Gonzaga Battles No. 10 West Virginia In First Round

The Gonzaga Bulldogs will open this NCAA Tournament appearance as a No. 7 seed in the East Region Thursday in Pittsburgh. The opponent for the Bulldogs will be the West Virginia Mountaineers, and the two teams will tangle on Thursday, March 15th. Here is a first look at the first foe for Gonzaga.

Team: West Virginia Mountaineers

Record: 19-13, 9-9 in conference

Conference: Big East

RPI: Tied for 56th, 4-8 against RPI Top 50

Ken Pomeroy Rank: 42nd overall.

Jeff Sagarin Computer Rating: 38th

Gonzaga is a good team that has proven it can beat good team like St. Mary's, Arizona, and Notre Dame. The Irish are a team that's handled the Mountaineers, so the Bulldogs have to feel like they have a good shot at winning this matchup. They definitely have a lot of talent. Unfortunately, they'll be playing in a semi-away environment despite having the better seed, as West Virginia only has a short drive to Pittsburgh while Gonzaga has to go cross-country.

Check out our Gonzaga team blog The Slipper Still Fits. For more coverage of Gonzaga in the 2012 NCAA Tournament, visit SB Nation Seattle's storystream. Click here for a link to our NCAA bracket 2012.

• Brackets on the brain? Us too! Play Yahoo! Tourney Pick’em and be a part of the craziest month of college basketball. It is fun, easy, and free.

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