Transition defense: NMSU outrebounded Louisiana Tech 42-33 in the first game with 12 offensive rebounds. The Aggies scored 36 points in the paint. NMSU averages 12.4 offensive rebounds per game. I asked Marvin Menzies if the Aggies can afford to be so aggressive on the offensive boards against a team that wants to push every possession.
"Right now, our defensive transition is one of our concerns because of how well they push the ball from multiple positions. The flip side is that if you do a good job hitting the glass, they slow down because they have to block out because they are giving away too many put backs and won't be so fast to leak out."
Another factor that hurts the Aggies is bad shots that lead to transition (Aggies need to play inside out they attempted 37 free throws in the first game) and turnovers (La Tech scored 21 points off 14 NMSU turnovers in the first game, NMSU coming off 18 turnovers at Denver.) Louisiana Tech leads the league with 17 turnovers forced per game and steals with 9.2 per game
3-point defense: Louisiana Tech made 11 3s in the first game against NMSU. Brandon Gibson was 5-5 from 3 and Kenyon McNeail was 4-6 but Cordarius Johnson Raheem Appleby and Alex Hamilton are among the others that can shoot. La Tech shoots 24.7 3s per game and make 8 per game.
Rotation: Now that Tyrone Watson is back in the lineup, say what you will about the rotation at Denver, but I feel like Menzies knows that perhaps at least Renaldo Dixon was lost in the mix. My opinion is that won't happen again. In a game like tonight specifically, I don't think it can. Dixon can back up both Watson and Sim Bhullar, whose conditioning has improved but you don't want him playing over 30 minutes per game this time of year while Dixon has proven to be nearly as effective on the glass and protecting the rim. Not to mention the fact that La. Tech plays up to 11 guys nightly.
"This game will be more conducive to (Dixon and Remi Barry) playing and getting back into the groove. They will both have an opportunity in this game."
La Tech's bench outscored NMSU 38-19 in the first game.
I like NMSU tonight. This is typically the type of game that the Aggies get up for under Menzies and the Aggies are 13-1 at the Pan Am. I'm also not a big fan of La. Tech. I don't think they have played anyone, even in the WAC since the first weekend. I think its realistic they can lose both road games this weekend. But they have that weapon of the 3 ball and a very good point guard in Kenneth Smith. NMSU is capable of playing a faster pace to match La. Tech, but perhaps Bhullar can play a bigger role tonight. NMSU wins 76-71
Despite the win, Menzies still shows his lack of head coaching skills. He admits that Paul Weir has to pressure him to go into the zone, which is what has stopped our opponents time after time. Dixon was overlooked for most of the game. Remy wasn't in long enough to break a sweat. Aronis got a 3 and was pulled out after a defensive error before he could even get into a rhythm. Every time KC was in the game, our lead slipped away. I understand Terrell was sick with the flu and that's why Menzies didn't start him. But I'll take his energy with the flu over KC when he's 100% healthy. Menzies prefers KC and his "keep dribbling until 8 seconds are left on the shot clock" stall. If anyone can suck the energy out of the Pan Am and the game it's KC and Menzies. Last night, though, the Aggies were fueled by the crowd and even Menzies couldn't put the brakes on the momentum. I'm enjoying this win because I don't see us getting anywhere near the NCAA tourney thanks to this coach.
NMSU loses in the WAC semis to Denver. Maybe they get into the worst of the worst tournament?
Great win for the team though....but I hear you.
it is frustrating if you care about it...I wish we could keep mm as an assistant recruiter....he seems creative and good at getting players to come to cruces....but my gosh, as a head coach, in my estimation, he is lacking...
It took KC to get injured for the aggies to start using Terrell and then they started winning....I have a little theory that Terrell is not an MM kind of guy...he is heady. But I LIKE that he is heady...but I bet that intimidates MM. Don't know...just a feeling....
And I really wonder how you can have an actual giant on your team with decent hands and free throw shooting chops and you don't get him the ball down low at least 5 times in the first 5 minutes...I just don't get that....but hey...
let's celebrate the moment!
As I understand it, the Aggies won by 18. I agree with anon 9:12 on the point guard situation and that the offense slows down when KC is in the game. I do believe DeRouen has shown he is the best option at PG but he did play last night even though he was sick. Anon 9:12, you raise some points about 3 other players and their time. The last time I looked, you can only have 5 players at atime on the floor. How did the Aggies on the floor do and who would you have taken out? I think Dixon has been tremendous all year and he is the one that has been impacted the most by this rotation. This is a very deep Aggie team. I understand you don't like the coach but what do you do with this kind of depth?. The point about Weir pressuring Menzies to go to a zone, that's what an assistant coach is supposed to do. It's left up to the head coach to make the final decision. That's my opinion and the aggies did win by 18.
What do you do with this kind of depth? You substitute more often and keep the other team off balance. You reward players like Dixon who have worked their tails off and been successful. You allow the bench to stay in longer than 2 minutes before pulling them out. As for Weir doing what he's supposed to do, your right. But a head coach should be able to see the results of changing the defense without having to be convinced by an assistant. Just because we won doesn't mean we should ignore the coaching lapses. That's my opinion.
You're opinion is worthless 2:42. 2 NCAA appearances and another 20 win season. That's good coaching. I don't know what you're smoking, but frankly, given your "opinions", I don't think I want to find out.
hey anon 1:09, no one's opinions are worthless, just relative...
relative as in a 20 win season by NMSU in the Wonderful WAC is not the same accomplishment as a 20 win season by a in the Mountain West, Pac 10, Big 10, Big 12, ACC, Big East, and about a half a dozen others besides....
It used to be that NMSU played in conferences with teams that made it to the final four....how times have changed...
I am sorry, but I agree more with the point of view you were so quick to lambast.
No, not all opinions are relative. Some opinions are baseless and without merit. Case in point, your "opinion" on MM. And lets for pretend say you do have a point. Who is going to do a better job than MM at the price we are currently paying him? Any solution there? Alford makes over a million bucks. Tim Floyd in El Paso makes more than double of MM. If you want to bring in somebody else, pony up the bucks. Otherwise just keep your baseless opinions to yourself.
not keeping my opinion to myself...this is a blog, where people come to give and read opinions...you don't like that, go look at a beautiful sunrise here http://www.shaunkillenphotography.com/landscape/mull-sunrise/
Certainly, for there to be an opinion, there needs to be someone having an opinion and their ideas about how the world works to come up with their opinion.
calling someone's opinion worthless might be your opinion, and it might be true for you, but not for them...its relative....
As for MM being a good coach, that is also relative...relative to Popovitch, not so good....relative to me...yea, he's good.
I just can't help but remember days when people were excited about the team and direction it was going in and the competition it faced...none of that seems to be the case anymore...is that mm's fault? Not entirely, and he is not blameless either...
And there are inexpensive alternatives...create a plan where you hire high risk, high reward coaches, with the understanding that we are looking for one who is good, and keep them on short term contracts until you find the right one...this is just an idea, but there could be lots of ideas....
Whoever posted at 10:01 am today is smoking crack.
It's not a rational opinion. MM has done a bang up job here at NMSU at bargain basement prices. For someone to complain about him after an 18 point victory is ludicrous!
Comparing MM to an NBA HoF coach is apples and oranges. Do you not have an inkling of intellectual honesty in your under developed brain?
Just because you believe your opinion to be valid, doesn't make it a valid opinion. You have no idea what you are talking about? The students seem to be back in force and they seem to like this team, the coach, and the direction we are headed. I'm right there with them. MM has done an excellent job as his tenure with NMSU. My only worry pertaining to him is that another school and offers him more money.
High risk high reward? Are you nuts?? That's a terrible idea. One that is only asking for serious trouble for NMSU. Besides we have a great coach who cares about his players, the community, the university, and winning.
How do you ignore all the success MM has had here?
We have tried high risk high reward in the recent past. Theus got us to the NCAAs where we had the privelege of watching Kevin Durant eviscerate us. We paid for this with APR scores that threatened to ban us from postseason play and a relatively expensive coach that was never fully invested in Las Cruces.
Marvin gets us to the tournament with the same frequency with far fewer costs.
If you are waiting for a return to the McCarthy glory years, I don't know what to tell you. This is a different era and a different game. The deck is stacked against schools like ours in a way that makes a prolonged tournament run nearly impossible. 12 seeds with a chance at a big school upset (like Mich St in 2010) is essentially our ceiling until our conference situation improves.
yes, no easy answers....I didn't say high risk, high reward is ideal...and it carries clear costs...its just an idea....I for one like trying different things rather than staying with a mediocre status quo.
At the same time, outside of immature personal attack going on here, I hear people's reason on this list....and I agree to a point that its hard to argue with 20 win seasons and trips to the big dance.
Also I don't think we will do anything to change the situation....
I wish we could get into the MWC with the UNMs and UNLVs and have to become a legit team to compete for a tourney bid....I look at the teams at the bottom of the WAC bracket and see nothing of value in terms of competition.
MM has proven to be the best recruiter in the WAC. No question there. NMSU has been by far the most talented team in the league every year he has been around...and that includes the teams with Babbit and Carrol.
I wonder why he hasn't done better with the talent given.
But maybe it is just how it is these days....maybe as 3:21 says, it is 'success'....I am the first one to get excited for NMSU success. I enjoy this team too.
I don't think they are well coached though. No, I don't think so. I just think the softness of our schedule sometimes masks that.
Anon 3:13, I agree with your last 3 paragraphs. They summarize the MM years perfectly. But as far as recruiting, Paul Weir is the recruiter. MM is the closer.
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