Monday, October 19, 2009

WAC polls

The WAC coaches and media polls will be released on Tuesday so I thought I would put my picks out on here. I think it's going to be a competitive year on the top half with an improved skill level across the board.

Mens poll
1. NMSU - I have to pick based on the belief that Gillenwater and McKines will be on the team for the conference season. If they are, it's the most talented team in the league and that's not including the newcomers.
2. Nevada - The one-two punch of Babbitt and Johnson is too good to ignore despite a lack of apparent depth. I hope Fields returns to form.
3. Louisiana Tech - they got better at the point guard spot after reaching the tournament semis last year. Kyle Gibson and Magnum Rolle could be the league's no. 2 inside out duo.
4. Idaho — Don Verlin made a believer out of me last year and he has the same squad coming back.
5. Utah State — Is this a slight? Maybe. Do I feel bad about it? Not really. How many games can Stew Morrill win by himself? Three? Four? So the rest of the time his players have to get it done. People say four starters from a team that won 30 games but outside of Wesley, those four starters aren't nearly as skilled as the teams above the UtAgs. I may be the last person to jump on the Quayle bandwagon, but I want to see how good he is without the big fella, whose motor and work ethic carried that team last year. The past USU teams had Carroll and Wilkinson. The remaining players are solid and I like USU, but they can't win the WAC every year.
6. Fresno State — Very talented frontcourt players. Big year for their coach?
7. San Jose State — I thought they would be better last year. They weren't. Oliver, Oakes and Webster are experienced enough to do some damage. Big year for their coach?
8 Boise State —
9 Hawaii
Both of these bottom teams seem to be in rebuilding mode and could finish in either 8th or 9th

Player of the Year
Jahmar Young, NMSU — I think Babbitt could get this. But I expect Jahmar to be huge this season. It's so impressive what he does, considering he's really a shooting guard who plays small forward.

Luke Babbitt, Nevada
Kyle Gibson, La. Tech
Mac Hopson, Idaho
Sylvester Seay, Fresno State

Newcomer of the Year
DeAndre Brown, La. Tech

1. Fresno State
2. La. Tech
3. Boise State
5. Idaho
6. Nevada
7. Hawaii
8. Utah State
9. San Jose State

Player of the Year
Shavavie Dowdell, La Tech

Madison Spence, NMSU
Jaleesa Ross, Fresno State
Adrienne Johnson, La. Tech
Tasha Harris, Boise State


Anonymous said...

I agree with you on the Aggies winning the WAC if Gillenwater and McKines are there. But Utah St. 5th? Sorry man. I know they cant win the WAC every year but 4 returning starters under the best coach in the conference is big for them. Also, you have to keep in mind that they have a great home court advantage. They're fan support is awesome which makes a huge difference. I can see picking them 2nd or maybe 3rd. But this team will be better than RENO, and La Tech, and probably Idaho. Nevada is suspect to me with an unproven coach and an over rated point guard. This team lost at home to a struggling NMSU team last year. I say flip flop your 2nd and 5th place picks. lol. good stuff though.

Symetriic said...

USU 5th? What's that flying out the window? Oh, your credibility.

C'mon, man!

Jason Groves said...

I can understand the sentiments by the first two posters and I'm sure you're not alone. Let me just offer this as well. Both the coaches and the media picked Idaho dead last in last year's preseason poll. ... The coaches picked San Jose State fourth while the media picked Nevada, Utah State, NMSU, La Tech 1-4 respectively, all of which reached the WAC semifinals last year.

Travis Mason-Bushman said...

I don't buy Nevada at all, not with their lack of depth. Every other WAC contender is seriously deep and is going to be running fast-paced offenses. That makes me question how well they'll be able to keep up.

Anonymous said...

I would place Utah State at 5th as well. Utah State fans are pissed, but its cool. I like it. Its fun pissing those fans off.

Anonymous said...

" I like it. Its fun pissing those fans off."

You know what I like? Sweeping your team 3-0 last year.

In all seriousness though, I'm not "pissed" at your rankings, but I do think they are misguided. But that's why we actually play the games.

Anonymous said...

If you pick New Mexico State to win every year sooner or later you will be right.

Jason Groves said...

I picked them fourth last year. They finished as the No. 5 seed and reached the tourney semis. Thanks

Anonymous said...

I remember NMSU sweeping Utah State in 2005 when Utah State went to the NCAA Tourney. Utah State was lucky NMSU was the 3rd youngest program in the nation last year. NMSU had dominated Utah State every year except for last year.

Anonymous said...

Will NMSU actually run an offense this year, or will they (yes, even Mr. All-World Young) simply continue to do great perimeter moves only to get past the defender and pull up for 19-footers? This is why NMSU will not win the conference. Athleticism is through the roof. Cognitive approach to the game is six feet under. Only Steve Cleveland's Fresno accomplishes less with more than NMSU. I'm also still not sold on Boise being terrible. Graham has surprised before. As to your "if", wouldn't it be wonderful if NMSU actually had a group of starters that played an entire season? Of course, that's about as likely as a first-place finish for the Aggies.

Anonymous said...

LOL@11:37 that comment is too funny. We ran offense last year, and were tops in the league in scoring. How ridiculous can you be? Our liability was on defense for most of the year, and rebounding. We improve in that area, and we'll control the WAC.

Anonymous said...

Once again, I can see the media and the coaches picking Utah St. to win the WAC and finish ahead of NMSU. But Nevada? This team is being ranked purely by name. Babbit is a great player. But Johnson is over rated, they lack depth at every position, and Brandon Fields is a bust.

Anonymous said...


No current player in the WAC has been on a team that has won a game @USU.

Only 1 head coach (Steve Cleveland did it twice) has won a game @USU as a head Coach.

USU has lost 1 WAC game in Logan in 3 years.

USU will win at home and go .500% on the road for a 12 - 4 WAC and be at or near the top again.

Anonymous said...

Utah State needs to play somebody other than Utah University For the Deaf and Blind, and Utah valley State Tech, and maybe they wouldnt win 30 games. Their schedule is a joke. It's funny that they cry because of low NCAA seedings when they havent played anybody.

Anonymous said...

It is just me or do Utah State fans totally just like New Mexico fans. Utah State fans are just jealous of NMSU. They better start praying that McKines, and Gillenwater don't become eligible, because when they do. Utah State has no chance at beating New Mexico State.

Anonymous said...

USU has the #2 hardest OOC schedule in the WAC behind Nevada.

avg opp rpi

#2 USU 146
#4 NMSU 171.7

Anonymous said...

2:44--Great research on the RPI. I'm assuming these figures are for this year. I know that your schedule has not been tougher than NMSU's the last couple of years.

Both schedules are a joke really.

Anonymous said...

Utah State does not have the 2nd best RPI. How can you use the RPI from last season. Its a new season. Lets wait until atleast January before we say who played a tougher schedule.

Anonymous said...

The numbers are based on last years final RPI numbers. As such, they can be a little misleading. A team like St. Mary's was on the NCAA bubble, but has lost 2 of their 3 best players from last year. So their 46 ranking is probably a little high. Someone like Fullerton, on the other hand, could surprise, be the kings of the Big West, and better than their 1xx ranking.

You are correct that both schedules are a joke. Nevada is the only WAC team who has a decent OOC.

Unknown said...

it is funny how everybody says USU doesn't play anybody, but then they can't beat the Aggies either. If the aggies get 30 wins from an easy schedule and can only beat utah university for the deaf, or whatever you call it, then why can't you beat them?

You can tell the prediction of USU being 5th is total BS anyway because it took such a long explanation to defend your pick. You had no stats to back it up. Guess what, Wilkinson's replacement was described as both his old coach and Stu as more advanced and naturally skilled that ole big red. He has actually played basketball since before college.