Turnovers: big key for this game. St. Louis doesn't turn the ball over that much (11.4 per game), NMSU does (14.2 per game) and St. Louis forces 15 turnovers per game. The SLU guards are aggressive and will be all over KC Ross Miller and Terrel de Rouen. Guards Jordair Jett, Mike McCall and forwards Dwayne Evans and Cody Ellis all average at least one steal per game. Aggies have to be aggressive but protect the ball
Big game for Bandja Sy and Renaldo Dixon: NMSU is much better offensively when Bandja Sy is productive. He had good second halves in the WAC Tournament last week. I don't think Sy can wait until the second half on Thursday. NMSU's offense isn't efficient as a whole and when they aren't getting transition points, they go through long scoring lulls. NMSU went 10 minutes without a field goal in the WAC title game. Can't happen Thursday. I think it's going to be a tight game but the only way NMSU can get blown out is if they go on another dry spell. Dixon will have his hands full with St. Louis power forward Dwayne Evans, who was described to me as a freshman or sophomore year Wendell McKines. Good rebounder, drives and gets to the foul line. Dixon and Sim Bhullar's length in traffic can bother him.
Rebounding: St. Louis keeps teams to one shot for the most part so NMSU has to do the same. St. Louis grabs around nine offensive rebounds per game but NMSU is the 20th ranked team in terms of rebounding percentage at 55 percent.