Saturday, November 17, 2012

Niagara: Three keys and a prediction

Niagara has lost to the same two teams the Aggies have this season. Sunday's game should be higher scoring. Niagara averages 80 ppg. It looks like they have four players who shoot the 3 as the team shoots over 39 percent from long range.

Perimeter defense: Niagara scores 43 percent of its points from long range. That's opposite of what the Aggies hope to do and should do against a smaller team. NMSU does a good job guarding the 3-point line so as long as the Aggies continue to do that, they should be fine. Niagara shot 30 3s against Bucknell. NMSU has to defend that and hope Niagara doesn't get hot.

Where is Bandja?: Bandja Sy has rebounded the ball well and played well defensively but I think a lot of the pressure would be taken off this team offensively if Sy was more assertive offensively. He took five shots against Bucknell. Sy is off to a 7-27 (25.9 percent) start from the field and 2-13 (15.3 percent) from 3-point range. Sy needs to be better. I think it could open things up for the Aggies.

Offensive Rebounding: If the 3 is Niagara's strength, NMSU could take advantage of some easy putbacks against a team that has two players listed at 6-8. NMSU should win this game on the offensive glass and the free throw line.

We saw better shooting from the Aggies on Saturday, but they weren't patient offensively. In a more up and down game, NMSU should get back to what they do best. NMSU wins 79-71

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