Thursday, January 19, 2012

A road sweep would be nice, not neccessary

If NMSU wants to compete for WAC champion, the Aggies must best San Jose State tonight. They can, however, afford to lose at Hawaii on Saturday. Which is a distinct possibility, but as long as the Aggies split with Hawaii, Nevada and utah State, they will be right there. Easier said than done, as Hawaii is a good team and other than Nevada, the only team in the WAC with size that matches up with the Aggies. Josten Thomas will make McKines work on both ends and VJ is a tough post scorer who also defends. NMSU certainly has size at center, but VJ is probably the best center in the league right now.

Another big player for Hawaii is Zane Johnson, who is a knock down shooter. I think with the Aggies guards and wings this year, players like Johnson, who need space to get their shot off, will find it difficult against the length, strength and quickness of guys like Daniel Mullings and Bandja Sy. Mullings did an excellent job coming off screens all weekend against Utah State and Idaho, and did a nice job of shutting down Preston Medlin, who I think is a similar player to Johnson.

Notice how I'm completely looking past tonight's San Jose game? It's a luxury the Aggies don't have.

One thing that would be nice for the Aggies though is to blow out the Spartans, allowing key players to get rest, bench players to get experience and allow for some confidence heading into Saturday.

One player who could benefit from a blowout is Renaldo Dixon, who rejoined the team this week.

Marvin Menzies on Dixon, grades and injuries

"Injury wise we are good. Renaldo is back after going through missing some practices and some games and trying to sort some things out, we sat and had a long talk so he's back with us practicing and will make the trip. we are happy to see that things are well with him. Grades are fine. I'm not expecting any surprises. I spoke with him over the weekend. He's always been in a good place, he just had some things he needed to work through. They guys are happy to have him back. It will be a positive injection for sure in the way of depth, in the way of practice. He's got to earn his stripes again so to speak. He just has to get back in sync. He's not under punishment but we are playing well right now. You want to make sure you keep moving in a forward direction and have him compliment what we are doing right now."

On the possibility of sweeping this road trip and setting up a matchup of two unbeatens next week vs. Nevada
"It would be very beneficial to get this sweep on the road. We've got talent to do it its just a matter of going out and doing it. It wouldn't be the end of the world if we dropped one either. You can't win them all until you win the next one."

Wendell McKines on his trip to the Bay Area
"If you count just random people thats been following me since high school, I would say this trip at least 100. San Jose is always interesting trip. Off the court people asking for tickets and random things. On the court, it's just business as usual trying to get the win."

McKines on the challeges of this road trip
"Its pretty interesting for me. We usually are coming from Hawaii going to the Bay or going to the Bay and then going to Hawaii. I always look forward to it. It's definatley more difficult playing at San Jose then playing at Hawaii. I would prefer to play at Hawaii first and then fly into San Jose. just from a travel standpoint, I want to get there two or three days earlier, get acclimated to their time zone and then play the game opposed to playing at san jose and then the next moring leaving to play saturday."

"We've been through changes throughout the year. This is a time we are having fun playing with each other and finding an identity within ourselves. Its just a matter of consistecy at this point and not having any losses."

On avoiding looking past this weekend to Nevada
"The Nevada game doesnt hold as much weight if we dont win at San Jose and if we dont win at Hawaii. We can definatley look ahead and look forward to it if things pan out that way."


Anonymous said...

Winning cures all ills.

Play as a team and the Aggies will be fine.

I was glad to see the coach actually getting mad at his players the last game.

Anonymous said...

I agree that a sweep would be great but a split is more realistic. I'm glad Dixon is back as it gives the Aggies another body. The 7 players the Aggies have are as good as any other 7 in the WAC but depth is a problem. The one thing about the WAC this year is there is no stand out team. Every game is close and can go either way (The USU and Idaho games were 3 to 5 point games with 3 or 4 minutes left). The road win is important, hope the Aggies start this trip with a win tonight and then beat Hawaii saturday.

Anonymous said...

Nevada has already won at USU and defended their home court vs Hawaii. We don't have to win the Hawaii game, but we do need at least one win @Nevada, @Hawaii, or @USU. IMO, Hawaii is probably the easiest of the three. Lose there, and Nevada has a chance to pretty much sew up first on 1/26 by beating us here. Win there, and we could have a chance to gain the upper hand on the Pack.

Anonymous said...

Hey Jason,

Is it you or Wendell that can't spell definitely?

Vander Joaquim

SM said...

Hawaii looks to be heading in the wrong direction, especially after a loss at home to La Tech. Hopefully the Aggies can get in there and accomplish a huge road sweep.

I have been super critical of Menzies, but it is encouraging to see how this team has responded since CK left. Some of these wins are ugly, but the Aggies are making big plays at critical points in the second halves. Plus, that UTEP road loss does not taste as bad as it did a few weeks ago in light of UTEP recently starting to look like a decent team.

I tread cautiously with these words. Each time I start to like what I see from a Menzies-coached team, my excitement is quickly tempered by sloppy, undisciplined play.

Anonymous said...

even if and that is a big if, the aggies win the wac they will be seeded at 14 or higher. They will lose and everyone will say what a great year. Menzie cant recruit players look on see who the lobos and miners are getting and you will see were the aggies future stands.

Anonymous said...

look on see who the aggies recruit and see the aggies future not good.