New Mexico State hoops

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Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Better luck next time

Pretty solid effort by the Aggies tonight in front of 17,000 people. It showed me that their next game is winnable at home.

Just some thoughts off the top of my head while i wait in the media room to get a beverage, there were three things personally, that I would like to see next week in Las Cruces.

WENDELL
One thing the Aggies have consistently shown this year is that you cannot zone them and everytime the Lobos tried, it didn't take long for the Aggies to shoot them out of it. For the most part, when the Lobos were in man, Roman Martinez was guarding Wendell McKines — while Martinez may have a slight, slight edge on the Lobos offensive end, I would have liked to see them feed Wendell in the post against Martinez. Easy mismatch, and if they double make them pay because Wendell is a pretty solid passer. Troy Gillenwater also needs to be more assertive on the offensive end, which he will.

J.Y.
I have been waiting to see Young blow up and I thought tonight was going to be the night, but he is so unselfish that i think he reels himself in sometimes (he was also in foul trouble) whereas last year all he had to do was score in short bursts. It shows maturity on his part, but on the road I would have liked to see him shoot more than five times in the second half.

REBOUNDING
I was kind of surprised at the rebounding difference — 41-25 in favor of the Lobos and 14 offensive boards. Rahman is one that should be a better rebounder than he is so hopefully he'll improve in that area as the season goes on

17 comments:

IC said...

Well said, the lack of rebounding could be the main reason we lost the game. There should never be that big of a margin between the two teams if you expect to win.

jimmy said...

J.G. –
I’ve heard analysts say that if you shoot 33% from long range, you break even, pts-wise, compared to shooting from inside the arc. Ags broke even with 3-of-9 in the first half and got a point or two ahead by going 3-of-8 in the second half last nite. Lobos took 3 more three’s and made 2 more than the Aggies and win by 14 (difference was 4 pts at the stripe in 12 more attempts + 4 pts from the field in 1 more 2-pt attempt + 6 pts in 3 more attempts from downtown = 14 pts).
But outside shooting doesn’t get you to the line (kudos to JY for making all three FTs on that one and leading the WAC in %), generally, and doesn’t get their inside guys in foul trouble. Lobos 18 personals to our 24 is a problem, and like Jack said, it wasn’t the fault of the refs. Daniel Faris has been playing about20 mins per game due to foul trouble and versus the Ags he played 32. Jimmy sez "Kick out an open three once in a while but first drive in and draw fouls on these guys." It worked on Dairese Gary, who was way overplaying a la the Miners. Okay coach, you've got one week to fix this...

Jason Groves said...

Jimmy,
Do you want my job? Great observations on the Lobos game, both with your behind the arc analysis and talking about Martinez in a previous post. I think the Aggies can play man vs. the Lobos because UNM isn't the most athletic team on the floor, but the zone will be effective if they tighten up the holes that Martinez found, but then again, that could open it up for Toppert and McDonald for 3s. But i agree with you about getting into the lane....As a redshirt freshman, Hamidu Rahman and the senior Farris was a wash in my opinion

jimmy said...

J.G.- what's it pay? You're doing a fine job...Faris was real liberal with the arms, too. One of Wendell's fouls was really over-the-back on Faris but he was right in Wendell's face. A couple bad calls both ways, but overall not bad officiating. 2 PFs on Faris must be a career low. The Pan Am crowd will get NMSU some trips to the line. Menzies might consider pulling a Bob Knight on Alford and go all man, all night and challenge Steve and his team's manhood -- get in Alford's head. Except for Dandridge and McDonald I think the Aggies own the Lobos in physical match-ups.

Anonymous said...

Say, JG -
What gives with the NMSU AD website stats this year? for UTEP and UNM games the box score does not include fast break pts, 2nd chance pts, pts in the paint, lead changes, pts off turnovers, etc., all of which would help explain the game within the game. Can you call Dr. Bostson's IT dept. for us so they can put the lash to the work-study kids when they get back from break?
Also a shout out to the
REGGIE NATION hold outs: Theus was oh-for in The Pit. Why do you think Lute Olson refused to bring championship-caliber AZ teams in there? Lou knows how to crack heads in there vs a Big 10 coach. Use your Reggie T-shirts to wax your Beemers, Lee just surrendered to Grant at Appomattox Courthouse, did you hear? The pro-Lobo MWC announcers on The Mtn network love the choices of McMullen and Durham.
They had some of those kids over there practicing a 7:30am here, the day after Christmans.

IC said...

Anon 11:29, I don't follow your post, who are Lou, Mc Mullen and Durham? I didn't see the game on t.v. so I'm not sure I follow. Please enlighten me.

Anonymous said...

A young team like the NM State needs structure and Menzies coaching style does not provide that structure. I'm not sure who said it on here earlier, but I agree that the Aggies need to do more slashing to the basket, maybe a few pick-and-rolls, etc. All the Aggies seem to do is dribble around outside. I miss guards like Sam Crawford and Randy Brown that knew how to penetrate and create plays.

Anonymous said...

I don't know how old you are or how long you have been in Las Cruces Jason, but there was a time when NM State basketball games never had less than 9,000 or 10,000 fans in attendance (even when college kids were away on break). People on here can defend Menzies and make excuses for the reasons the Aggies have a losing record all they want...but the fact remains that there is a large enough number of Aggie fans that don't care for Menzies and his coaching style. 8,000 fans for a rivalry game with UTEP is downright pathetic.

I'm sure year after year Menzies will have some excuse for not leading the Aggies to the NIT or NCAA. The real Aggie fans that know a thing or two about basketball will probably stop going to games (as they already have started doing) and the crowds will get even smaller.

Anonymous said...

Structure? is that Neil McCarthy blogging? Sam Crawford still had a lien on his Camaro when he left town and that team had the police identify a player by the shoe print he left on a guy's face at the old Great American on draft keg night. Randy Brown was a great, great player along with Keith Hill, William Benjamin, Tracey 'B' Ware,etc. and on a given night they did beat the best team in the country (not Sam). As Yogi Berra said: "If people don't want to come out to the ball park, nobody's gonna stop 'em."

Anonymous said...

Non-conf attack has been very balanced. Gibson, Gillenwater and McKines each have 118 attempts. Rahman is lights out at .607 from the floor. JY, TG, Wen are each better than .500 shooting from inside the arc. JY and JGib are .400 or better from downtown in 115 combined tries. Laroche's arrival has enabled all of this. The team chemistry might be there to make it all click. The refs in the Pit allowed a lot of contact as the Lobos crashed the boards. Cheap fouls on Wendell hurt, and Rahman can use up more than 1 next time.

Anonymous said...

Hey how about put a article in the paper or quote in your next article how Roman Martinez refered to NMSU as "Las Cruces". I think this might piss some people off in Las Cruces, and I might just get more people to the game on Tuesday.

Anonymous said...

Ah, William Benjamin and Tracey Ware, forgot about them. Those were the days. Chris Hickman was good also. I'll take Hickman over the two 7 footers NM State has now anyday. James Anderson was awesome too. He was only 6'7", but he dominated Antonio Davis and Greg Foster when they would play UTEP. Rahman gets stuffed by 6'5" guys.

Anonymous said...

I'm not a Lobo fan by any means, but I have never heard Martinez say anything but respectful things about the Aggies. He refers to NMSU as Las Cruces because he's from nearby El Paso and people around here do stuff like that all the time.

As evident on this blog, Lobo and Aggie fans can be equally hateful.

Anonymous said...

On paper all of NM State's individual stats and percentages look pretty, but that doesn't matter when they are not winning games. If the Aggies were 9-2 with the same stats, that would be great. The only thing that all these pretty stats indicate is that the players are not aggressive enough and they are afraid to take chances.

Rahman, for example, takes only a few shots a game and he will only do it if he's wide open. Naturally Rahman is going to have a high percentage. He's afraid to go head to head with other big men. Against UTEP he opened up a bit, but it was too little too late.

Teams that play hard and push it to the limit are not going to have great percentages.

Anonymous said...

The reality for guys from either coast is that the elevation at Albuquerque and the Pit is a factor. Rahman could only play 24 mins and Gillenwater 25. Big Wen, JGib, Gillenwater and Joyner all got their 4 fouls and JY got 5. Hamidu could have been banging a little more at the defensive end to end up with more than just 1 foul. From the first possession when he dunked on Faris it looked like both played conservatively knowing if they fouled-out there was limited bench depth. The extra game tomorrow while the Lobos party on Central and eat at the Frontier will favor NMSU. If these guys stay in school, a Pit road win might happen in the next two years.

IC said...

Hopefully no one will get shot at the frontier.

In all seriousness, I dont think Martinez meant any disrespect. He is from the area and didnt his father or grandfather play at NMSU. I dont know why, but I remeber having heard that a while back.

Besides, it's up to the Coach to fire up his team, not the opposing players. If Coach Menzies can't rally his team in a rivalry game at home, it might make for a long season.

Anonymous said...

for those of you who keep referring to the "old days" GET OVER IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!! it was a long time ago and college basketball was much different then. there are rules now and academic requirements. APR, graduation rates, ETC. those players were great and no disrespect but times have changed and you cant go recruit just anybody. most recent case HERB POPE! i want them to win and win now and the "their young" excuse is getting old already, but one thing that we cant do as aggie fans is give up and stop going to the games. keep supporting them by going to the games because last week at the pit "i was there" the fans are the only reason why the lobos beat us. we are clearly more athletic and a better team but the home team always has an distinct advantage expecially when theres 17000 people there!!!!!! lets support "OUR TEAM" and get as many people to the PAN AM as possible!!!!!!!! GO AGGIES!!!!!