1. Taming The Bulldogs. The Toreros may be the least likely team to make the tournament, until you factor in their coach. The big reason is that few expected them to be able to get past Gonzaga in the conference tournament; the Bulldogs having beaten them 13 times in a row. But San Diego is coached by Bill Grier, in his first year with the Toreros after having spent the previous 16 seasons as an assistant at Gonzaga. The Toreros, a No. 13 seed, will meet No. 4 seed UConn in the West Regional; the first time ever that the schools have played each other.
2. Kirstie Alley Approves. The Toreros play in Jenny Craig Pavilion, named for the weight-loss magnate who donated $7 million to build the facility in 1996. It was dedicated in Oct., 2000, and is known to students as the Slim Gym. Jenny Craig Inc. is based in nearby La Jolla, CA. Ironically, the university is also home to the Joan B. Kroc School of Peace Studies, named for the wife of McDonald's founder Ray Kroc, who has foiled many diets.
3. Seeing Red. No one is going to be able to push around the Toreros; they have one of the heaviest rosters in the tournament. They have six players who weigh in excess of 220 pounds, including freshmen Rob Jones and Josh Miller (both 230), junior forward Gyno Pomare (240) and 6-foot-10 freshman center Nathan Lozeau (280) ... Jones played at Archbishop Riordan in San Francisco, whose league nemesis is Serra High, which produced Tom Brady, Lynn Swann and Barry Bonds ... a Torero is a bullfighter; not exactly a politically correct nickname for a university these days. — Rick Chandler