Friday, January 17, 2014

Chicago State: Three keys unlocked

So much for the run the table talk. I am certainly among those who thought it was possible. I even wrote a column about it. But for the record, I predicted a 14-2 conference record at the outset of the season with both of those losses coming on the road, but I certainly didn't expect one of them to be at Chicago State. Probably the worse game the Aggies have played to date, on both ends of the court. NMSU needs Sim Bhullar back, just park him on the defensive end until he feels ready to return, something I expect him to be able to do next week.

Limit turnovers: This didn't happen. If the Aggies let the other team shoot 3s (which Chicago State did), if the Aggies have a horrible night at the foul line (which they did), and if the Aggies turn the ball over (which they did 19 times leading to 19 CSU points) If two of these things happen, the game will be close. If all three happen, NMSU will lose every time. Kind of concerning was the nature of a lot of the turnovers. There were some lazy cross court passes (once which Pippen scored off of) and the inbounds pass from DK Eldridge to nobody in particular eliminated the Aggies final comeback attempt. Daniel Mullings had to assert himself, which he did for 26 points, but he also turned the ball over 8 times, mostly when he drove and had the ball knocked away from him in traffic. Chili Nephawe had to be a force, and he had a decent game, but he had four turnovers in the post. What's also telling is the fact that Chicago State didn't do too much full court pressure, trapping mostly in the half court.

Attack the interior: Nephawe (12 points) and Mullings (26 points) were able to get to the basket or foul line, but that was about it. NMSU settled for the 3, shooting 23 times and Renaldo Dixon was limited to 15 minutes, going instead with Eldridge and Buovac to match up with Chicago State's quickness. NMSU is a better jump shooting team than ever before, but it's not going to win them many games.

Stay out of foul trouble: Wasn't much of a factor. Nephawe finished the game with four fouls but played 35 minutes. Aronis fouled out of the game in the late stages.


Anonymous said...


Chicago State?

Well, there you are, all those talking about what a great team this is and how people unfairly criticize MM.

What is the rationalization at this point?

Off night, maybe? What do you say?


Anonymous said...

In a one bid league, you should only be concerned about being undefeated in the conference tournament. All that talk about running the table in the regular season was meaningless. It provides a better seed in the NCAA Tourney, but you have to get there first. Rather they lose, shake off the undefeated talk, and refocus.


Max said...

Dumb loss. They must've been reading the articles about running the table in conference play. It should definitely serve as a wake up call and teach them to show up ready to play and not take these sad WAC opponents lightly. I guess we'll find out tonight if they learned anything.

Anonymous said...

I don't think they are a great team and as I said before conference play started, I expect them to lose 2 or 3 games on the road in conference play. It was an off night and nothing more than that. If it happens again tonight against UMKC then expectations for this team were way out of line. The absence of Sim is a huge factor right now. It is interesting that when the Aggies win it is because of talent or who we're playing and when we lose, it is poor coaching. Is that fair? Maybe you think that but I don't think so. I think we're the best team in a weak conference and our focus should be to win the conference, have a 3 game winning streak in the WAC tourney and have the opportunity to advance in the NCAAs. I don't think that is unrealistic.

Anonymous said...

Ok everybody notice carefully what Jesus and anon 9:32 just did...they are now saying that success is getting into the dance.

THIS IS NOT THE CASE. Our league is a misery!

I feel bad for us. We are sinking in mediocrity and because we have a chance to win a jv tourney, people are still holding out hope.

When oh when will you hold your coach and AD responsible?

denial is NOT A RIVER EGYPT.....Drink the coffee and wake up!


Anonymous said...

Alan, read my post again. I did not say success is getting to the dance. I said winning the WAC having a 3 game winning streak in the WAC tourney and having an opportunity to advance in the NCAAs is not an unrealistic goal. You can't win the lottery unless you buy a ticket. You can't advance in the NCAAs unless you get into the tournament. All along I have accepted the WAC being a one bid league. These blogs are good as they allow people to express their opinions. I would suggest that you don't use snippets of other people's opinions, especially taken out of context, and try to bolster your position.

Anonymous said...

The idea that getting to the tourney is indicative of success is embedded in your message as far as I can tell.

Advancing in the tourney is tantamount to winning the lottery so very good analogy. Those are the odds, I would say of advancement.