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Today in MWC Hoops (1-30-13)

January 30, 2013

I feel like I’m going toe to toe with The Chimp twice a week!

Another 2-2 day on Saturday, bringing my season record to 12-11. Wins with CSU and Air Force and losses with UNM and Boise State.

First the losses.

Sure I know its tough to win on the road in the MWC. But for Pete’s sake, how the heck does New Mexico score 34 points in a friggin game? Yes San Diego State had their collective back to the wall trailing the Lobos by 2 games in the conference standings but the Lobos were getting 5 friggin points. 34 points. 15 points in the final 24 minutes. Since when did New Mexico become TCU?

And then there was Boise State getting blown out by 16 at Nevada. Favored by 1.5 and not showing up. Sure you were missing ace perimeter shooter Jeff Elorriaga who is out with a concussion. But a 16-point loss to a team that Wyoming absolutely smoked in the same gym? There is no I in team. There is an I in quit. Some praise needs to go the the Wolf Pack who played well and won their second MWC game.

Air Force went into Laramie and ran out to an early lead which they never gave up as they outshot, outdefended and outrebounded their way to a big road win over Wyoming. I have to be honest with you. I am impressed with how hard Wyoming fights to stay in games with basically 5 players of which a pair of them probably aren’t up to MWC caliber. AFA big Taylor Broekhuis nearly recorded a double-double. Not a good sign for the Pokes considering that their strength is their tandem bigs Leonard Washington and Larry Nance Jr.

Colorado State went to Fresno and ran out to a 38-20 first half lead before the Bulldogs bit and clawed their way to get it back to 5 midway through the second half. All five CSU starters scored in double figures and subs Daniel Bejarano and Jon Octeus did their thing as well in a total team effort as the Rams won their first MWC road game of 2013.

Today’s Games

All three of them being played on the Front Range.

Fresno State @ Air Force (-8) – I have to be honest with you. This game on paper looks pretty goofy. Fresno State cant shoot 2’s very well and Air Force doesnt defend the paint worth a darn. Fresno is a terrible defensive rebounding team and the Falcons are a terrible offensive rebounding team. The biggest gap – turnovers and free throws. Look for Air Force to deliver from the free throw line against the foul prone Bulldogs and to gain a little bit of an advantage in the turnover battle. Will it be enough to get over the number? I think so. Take the Falcons and lay the points.

New Mexico @ Wyoming (+1.5) – Last time the Pokes were home dogs was a week ago against San Diego State. And they proceeded to thrash the Aztecs by double digits holding them to 9 first half points. 9 points in a half and the Lobos are coming off a game where they scored 34 in 40 minutes. Are we looking at a shutout? I don’t think so. I think the Lobos have the backcourt depth to speed up the Pokes and cause them problems on both ends of the floor. And with their ability to get to the line and make free throws, I expect they will hold on in the end game. Take the Lobos and lay the points.

Boise State @ Colorado State (-9) – Word is that Bronco talisman Jeff Elorriaga might play after sitting out with a concussion. Boise is a good perimeter shooting team and an underrated team on the glass with Ryan Watkins gathering boards on both ends. But a wise man once explained to me that it will be very difficult for a team to come into Moby and cause the Rams problems if they aren’t a really good defensive team. The Broncos are not a good defensive team. Take the Rams and lay the points and pray against a late three to gain a backdoor cover.

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