It was announced Friday the official pronunciation of the school’s name is contrary to what students and staff had been using
GONZAGA UNIVERSITY, SPOKANE, WA– Gonzaga University officials announced on Friday that, contrary to popular belief among students, staff, and alumni, the actual pronunciation of the school’s name is “Gon-ZAW-gah,” opposed to the widely used “Gon-ZAG-gah.”
The information was posted on the school’s official website in addition to an email sent to students in an attempt to correct the common misconception.
“Like you, we thought that it was pronounced with the ‘zag’ rhyming with ‘lag’ as opposed to ‘log’,” the memo said. “But after seeing the overwhelming evidence suggesting otherwise, we thought it was best to let our student body know the proper way to pronounce our school’s name.”
The memo went on to describe in detail the evidence that it had mentioned earlier.
“Although our students, staff, school officials, locals, alumni, Washington state sports announcers, long time fans, and St. Aloysius Gonzaga all pronounce the name as ‘gon-ZAG-gah’,” The two page memo said. “Every single sports analyst and basketball announcer outside of Washington and Oregon elects to pronounce it as ‘Gon-ZAW-gah’ so that obviously has to be the proper pronunciation.”
“We feel so stupid,” The university continued. “How could we think that just because this is how our school has been pronouncing the name since its inception in 1887 that it was right? All it would have taken us to see that we were wrong would have been to simply watch our basketball team play a road game against a team that wasn’t from a state that directly borders Washington.”
The university went on to apologize to the public for picking such an unusual and difficult name.
“We understand that Gonzaga is a name that could really go either way in terms of pronunciation,” Officials detailed. “Just like people could easily pronounce ‘amazing’ as ‘aw-maw-zing’ or ‘razor’ as ‘raw-zure’. It’s just one of those words.”
The memo concluded by reminding students that they should “Zaw-awg Up,” not “Zag Up,” and apologized to the countless number of out-of-state family members, radio personalities, and March Madness watchers for trying to correct their pronunciation that had turned out to be right after all this time.
“And of course, as always,” The memo said in its final line. “Go Zaw-awgs!”